West of What?! as in, What the Hell Was That?
The Western genre did more than any other to promote the myths of westward expansion, define a narrow traditional view of masculinity, present absurd gender stereotypes for women, and normalize genocide. Rather than lock them up as politically incorrect images of our shared past, West of What?! wades into this complicated vision, from casting Rock Hudson as Young Bull in Winchester ’73, to more complex yet still questionable treatments of race and ethnicity in Little Big Man. If we peel back a layer or two, we can find trailblazing directors like Nicholas Ray, more recently Kelly Reichardt, and many in-between, who question those assumptions and present more problematic views of the West. A quartet of educators, writers and programmers will be presenting different visions of the West throughout the rest of 2017 and well into 2018. We hope you’ll join us for a fascinating journey, into the West.
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