Rachel Kadish has some interesting observations on the nature of heroes in children’s books of the past versus today in “Childhood Heroes: Once Self-Made, Now to the Manner Born.” She feels that heroes of the past were often suffering from PTSD (really!)
With a few notable exceptions, the formula is identical: Trauma is the mechanism through which superpower is acquired. It’s the very act of surviving hardship (often cataclysmic in scale) that shapes those gloriously intimidating figures into something they never were before.
Whereas she posits,
Today’s new heroes are to the manner born, and while they may spend a few scenes living in obscurity, they’re soon unveiled as members of the elect.
I think it is an interesting observation. What do you all think? (BTW, there are some good points made in the comments, e.g. Katniss being self-made.)