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Degeneration of Settler Colonialism in Contemporary Cinematic Depictions of the U.S. West: Introduction

Marubbio, M Elise and Parez, Marek and Carter, Matthew (2020) Degeneration of Settler Colonialism in Contemporary Cinematic Depictions of the U.S. West: Introduction. Zeitschrift fuer Anglistik und Amerikanistik: a quarterly of language, literature and culture, 68 (1). pp. 3-5. ISSN 0044-2305

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Abstract

The settler’s situation is underpinned by the fear of having been caught in a process of endless transition, hence the determination to define the parameters of collective sovereignty and to establish a satisfactory existential basis. The sense of uncertainty that underlies the settler’s situation accounts for the necessity of developing power structures that sustain the settler collective’s striving to complete its design, and this triggers a range of conflicts. Repeatedly addressing the eponymous region’s legacy of settler colonialism, film depictions of the American West re-inscribe oppression of racial minorities, sexual abuse, and class exploitation in order to validate the foundational settler-nation myth that consolidates hegemonic forms of racial, economic, cultural, and political power.

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