Classics and the American Western: Making Film, History, and Myth

A Double-Barreled Presentation

This double panel will explore aspects of the mythology of the American Western film and its use of classical themes and motifs. The panel will be in two parts, with four papers in each session: the first half, “Tantae molis erat: Frontiers and Foundations” will examine examples from the classic Western to the 1960s, while the second half, “Kleos Aphthiton: Frontiers Extended” will investigate the contemporary resurrection of the genre in more recent productions. Individual papers will consider social, political, historical, and mythical issues and will address the usefulness of cinematic portrayals of ancient themes in Western guise for our teaching of the Classical Tradition.

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