Dichotomy in American Western Mythology

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Description

The fundamental dichotomy between savage and civilized man is examined within the archetypal Western myth of American culture. The roots of the dichotomy are explored through images produced between 1888 and 1909 by artists Frederic Remington and Charles Russell. Four John Ford films are then used as a basis for the "dichotomous archetype" approach to understanding Western myth in film. Next, twenty-nine "historical" and "contemporary" Western movies are discussed chronologically, from The Virginian (1929) to Dances with Wolves (1990), in terms of the savage/civilized schema as it is personified by the roles of archetypal characters. The conclusion proposes a potential ... continued below

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vi, 129 leaves : ill. ; 28 cm.

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Robinson, Scott E. May 1991.

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This thesis is part of the collection entitled: UNT Theses and Dissertations and was provided by UNT Libraries to Digital Library, a digital repository hosted by the UNT Libraries. It has been viewed 38 times , with 6 in the last month . More information about this thesis can be viewed below.

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  • Robinson, Scott E.

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The fundamental dichotomy between savage and civilized man is examined within the archetypal Western myth of American culture. The roots of the dichotomy are explored through images produced between 1888 and 1909 by artists Frederic Remington and Charles Russell. Four John Ford films are then used as a basis for the "dichotomous archetype" approach to understanding Western myth in film. Next, twenty-nine "historical" and "contemporary" Western movies are discussed chronologically, from The Virginian (1929) to Dances with Wolves (1990), in terms of the savage/civilized schema as it is personified by the roles of archetypal characters. The conclusion proposes a potential resolution of the savage/civilized conflict through an ecumenical mythology that recognizes a universal reverence for nature.

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vi, 129 leaves : ill. ; 28 cm.

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UNT Theses and Dissertations

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  • May 1991

Added to The UNT Digital Library

  • March 9, 2015, 8:15 a.m.

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  • Oct. 4, 2017, 6:28 p.m.

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Citations, Rights, Re-Use

Robinson, Scott E. Dichotomy in American Western Mythology, thesis, May 1991; Denton, Texas. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc500528/: accessed October 18, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; .