The third part of the study will cover GUNMAN'S RHAPSODY, Parker's historical novel on the legend of Wyatt Earp. In the final part of the study devoted to Earp I will argue that, contrary to popular understanding, the myth of the western, and the legend of Wyatt Earp in particular, calls into question the legitimacy of the rule of law instituted by the American constitutional framework as an expression of the social contract theory of sociopolitical organization, that is to say, “rights” politics. To this end, I have already begun correlating specific instances of the justification of the vendetta ride with theoretical refutations of the premises of the US Constitution. I touched upon this in the first part of the Parker study, but in the final installment I will engage in a wide ranging discussion of the nature of the American version of the rule of law, which will necessarily take the form of a critical commentary on the Constitution.
I have also been working on a series of commentaries on western films (THE PROFESSIONALS, THE GOOD, THE BAD AND THE UGLY, ONCE UPON A TIME IN THE WEST, HOMBRE, LAWMAN, ULZANA'S RAID, JEREMIAH JOHNSON, HIGH PLAINS DRIFTER, PALE RIDER, and the newest 3:10 TO YUMA) which will begin appearing at the end of the summer/early fall.
I have not tried to make such a sophiscated analysis of the Wyatt Earp legend as this since arguing unsuccessfully with historians who saw the Earps as hired guns of the Capitalist establishment, but ... more
Interesting review. McMurtry is an odd case. He has spent the last twenty years trying to renounce his greatest book, LONESOME DOVE. Apparently he wants to gain entry into some misguided club that he ... more
As a major fan of Parker, I think I'm going to have to put this on my reading list. I am impressed that you went to the trouble of reading Parker's dissertation. I've often wondered myself what he... more
I would not say I quote Parker's dissertation extensively, but I do rely on it a good bit for justification of the theoretical framework of my interpretation, especially the first three chapters and... more
You provide us much to think about, at a level that requires readers to know their history and contemporary culture well before they can put it all together. We agree on Slotkin. Below is a review I... more