Electronic Theses and Dissertations

Identifier

871

Date

2013

Date of Award

4-25-2013

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy

Major

English

Concentration

Textual Studies

Committee Chair

Verner Mitchell

Committee Member

Sonja Livingston

Committee Member

Jeffrey Scraba

Committee Member

John Miles

Abstract

By following 160 years of horses and horsemen in literature, I look to the realistic and mythic movements of horses and horsemen as they respond to historical and cultural tensions. In order to accomplish this task, I lean heavily on Richard Slotkin's Gunfighter Nation. Slotkin claims that myth "is not only something given but something made, a product of human labor, one of the tools with which human beings do the work of making culture and society," and it is with his definition for myth that I evaluate the impact of horses on masculine identity (659). My trajectory is historical; I follow the experience of the horse and the symbolic importance of its power, or, as Gina Dorr states, its "unpower" (6). The role of the horse is problematized, and complicated. As the horse gains and loses power, so too do groups of men relying on horses for identity.

Comments

Data is provided by the student.

Library Comment

dissertation or thesis originally submitted to the local University of Memphis Electronic Theses & dissertation (ETD) Repository.

Share

COinS