“From time to time we receive letters from readers who wonder why there’s so much moralizing in our mags. They take great pains to point out that comics are supposed to be escapist reading and nothing more. But somehow, I can’t see it that way. It seems to me that a story without a message, however subliminal, is like a man without a soul. In fact, even the most escapist literature of all – old time fairy tales and heroic legends – contained moral and philosophical points of view. At every college campus where I may speak, there’s as much discussion of war and peace, civil rights, and the so-called youth rebellion as there is of our Marvel mags per se. None of us lives in a vacuum – none of us is untouched by the everyday events around us – events which shape our stories just as they shape our lives. Sure our tales can be called escapist – but just because something’s for fun, doesn’t mean we have to blanket our brains as we read it!
— Stan Lee
Storytelling is one of the, if not the, thing that makes us human. It is one of our greatest gifts. A good story can excite us, can move us, can inspire us, can make us feel all manner of feels. Stories can touch us deeply. And, most importantly, it is through stories, both heard and our own, that we come to know ourselves and our world. Our very identity and relation to the world is codified through story. This conflux of narratives is what gives us our experience of life.
Storytelling is something that is to be honoured, cherished, nurtured, supported. The stories we tell are just as important as the equations and knowledge and skills we teach. Entertainment is fabulous! And entertainment is never in opposition to great and intentful storytelling.