Zorro's Shadow: How a Mexican Legend Became America's First Superhero

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Andes, Stephen J. C.

This history of Zorro brings together the character's origins and demonstrates his impact on pop culture, not only revealing that Zorro was the inspiration for the most iconic superheroes we know today but also delving into the Latinx origins of the masked crusader

“SADDLE UP! Andes takes us on an exhilarating, dust-kicking ride through the actual origins and history of the first hemispheric Latinx superhero: Zorro.” —Frederick Luis Aldama, editor of Tales from la Vida: A Latinx 

Zorro’s Shadow explores the masked character's Latinx origins and his impact on pop culture—the inspiration for the most iconic superheroes we know today.

Long before Superman or Batman made their first appearances, there was Zorro. Born on the pages of the pulps in 1919, Zorro fenced his way through the American popular imagination, carving his signature letter Z into the flesh of evildoers in Old Spanish California. 

Zorro is the original caped crusader, the first masked avenger, and the character who laid the blueprint for the modern American superhero. 

Historian and Latin American studies expert Stephen J. C. Andes unmasks the legends behind Zorro, showing that the origins of America’s first superhero lie in Latinx history and experience. 

Revealing the length of Zorro’s shadow over the superhero genre is a reclamation of the legend of Zorro for a multiethnic and multicultural America.