Essay On Western Archetypes

301 Words2 Pages
Western archetypes undeniably played a major role in shaping literature and the American film industry. The genre has specific archetypes and themes, yet is not strict when it comes to the standards that consider a film or a book to be Western. Westerns can have a wide array of plots, yet still contain the characteristics of a standard Western. Most have simple plots: Good guys vs. Bad guys, Cowboys vs. Indians, Outlaw vs. Sheriff, and other simplistic schemes which never vary too much from one another. Throughout the 80s and the events that occurred during this time period, the cowboy archetype changed and evolved which can be seen in many books and films. However, there is not a strict interpretation of what constitutes a Western. Even with its flexibility, it remains a very unique category of literature and films.…show more content…
Most Westerns demographically take place in the West, hence the name. The setting usually consists of flat and open dry lands with plenty sagebrush in the backdrop, a small town that includes and emphasizes the sheriff’s office, the saloon, the jails, and sometimes the brothel. Additionally, essential elements that are evident in Westerns include one-on-one gun showdowns, covered wagons, cowboys and their easily distinguishable apparel, such as cowboy hats, boots and spurs, and denim. Horses, noose hangings, tumbleweed, and guns are also iconic elements. Because of its sui generis features, seeing these elements elsewhere are automatically coined to make us think of Westerns. Objects are not the only things that grew to represent the Western classification. Westerns cultivated its own distinguishable lingo, such as “Yeehaw”, “Giddyup”, “Howdy partner”, and the most common, “Y’all”. These are examples of the stereotypical phrases that exclusively give off a Western
Open Document