Are you a hero or a villain? For many lifetimes, authors and poets have used heroes and villains to tell us about human struggle and triumph. Sometimes, characters are complex, and can have both heroic and villainous characteristics. Can we learn something about ourselves from these characters? In this class, we will delve into the archetypes of the hero and villain across time periods and cultures. We will map the structure of the hero’s journey and consider the reasoning behind using superhuman characters. By close reading, group discussions, and writers’ workshops, we will analyze and create stories that explore heroes’ faults, and villains’ unexpected virtues.