The Western Landscape in Cormac McCarthy and Wallace Stegner

The Western Landscape in Cormac McCarthy and Wallace Stegner

Thomas, John L. A Country in the Mind: Wallace Stegner, Bernard DeVoto, History and the American Land. New York: Routledge, 2000. Tompkins, Jane. West of Everything: The Inner Life of Westerns. New York: Oxford University Press, 1992.

Author: Megan Riley McGilchrist

Publisher: Routledge

ISBN: 9781136604010

Category: Literary Criticism

Page: 266

View: 471

The western American landscape has always had great significance in American thinking, requiring an unlikely union between frontier mythology and the reality of a fragile western environment. Additionally it has borne the burden of being a gendered space, seen by some as the traditional "virgin land" of the explorers and pioneers, subject to masculine desires, and by others as a masculine space in which the feminine is neither desired nor appreciated. Both Wallace Stegner and Cormac McCarthy focus on this landscape and environment; its spiritual, narrative, symbolic, imaginative, and ideological force is central to their work. In this study, McGilchrist shows how their various treatments of these issues relate to the social climates (pre- and post-Vietnam era) in which they were written, and how despite historical discontinuities, both Stegner and McCarthy reveal a similar unease about the effects of the myth of the frontier on American thought and life. The gendering of the landscape is revealed as indicative of the attempts to deny the failure of the myth, and to force the often numinous western landscape into parameters which will never contain it. Stegner's pre-Vietnam sensibility allows the natural world to emerge tentatively triumphant from the ruins of frontier mythology, whereas McCarthy's conclusions suggest a darker future for the West in particular and America in general. However, McGilchrist suggests that the conclusion of McCarthy's Border Trilogy, upon which her arguments regarding McCarthy are largely based, offers a gleam of hope in its final conclusion of acceptance of the feminine.
Categories: Literary Criticism

Cormac McCarthy s Borders and Landscapes

Cormac McCarthy   s Borders and Landscapes

From Shane to Kill Bill: Rethinking the Western. Oxford: Blackwell, 2007. McGilchrist, Megan Riley. The Western Landscape in Cormac McCarthy and Wallace Stegner: Myth of the Frontier. New York and London: Routledge, 2010.

Author: Louise Jillett

Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing USA

ISBN: 9781501319129

Category: Literary Criticism

Page: 240

View: 563

Cormac McCarthy's work is attracting an increasing number of scholars and critics from a range of disciplines within the humanities and beyond, from political philosophy to linguistics and from musicology to various branches of the sciences. Cormac McCarthy's Borders and Landscapes contributes to this developing field of research, investigating the way McCarthy's writings speak to other works within the broader fields of American literature, international literature, border literature, and other forms of comparative literature. It also explores McCarthy's literary antecedents and the movements out of which his work has emerged, such as modernism, romanticism, naturalism, eco-criticism, genre-based literature (western, southern gothic), folkloric traditions and mythology.
Categories: Literary Criticism

Lost in the New West

Lost in the New West

Sacred Violence: A Reader's Companion to Cormac McCarthy (El Paso: Texas Western Press, 1995), 49–60 (p. 50). 14 Quoted in McGilchrist, The Western Landscape in Cormac McCarthy and Wallace Stegner: Myths of the Frontier (New York and ...

Author: Mark Asquith

Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing USA

ISBN: 9781501349546

Category: Literary Criticism

Page: 256

View: 350

Lost in the New West investigates a group of writers – John Williams, Cormac McCarthy, Annie Proulx and Thomas McGuane – who have sought to explore the tensions inherent to the Western, where the distinctions between old and new, myth and reality, authenticity and sentimentality are frequently blurred. Collectively these authors demonstrate a deep-seated attachment to the landscape, people and values of the West and offer a critical appraisal of the dialogue between the contemporary West and its legacy. Mark Asquith draws attention to the idealistic young men at the center of such works as Williams's Butcher's Crossing (1960), McCarthy's Blood Meridian (1985) and Border Trilogy, Proulx's Wyoming stories and McGuane's Deadrock novels. For each writer, these characters struggle to come to terms with the difference between the suspect mythology of the West that shapes their identity and the reality that surrounds them. They are, in short, lost in the new West.
Categories: Literary Criticism

Religion in Cormac McCarthy s Fiction

Religion in Cormac McCarthy s Fiction

El Paso: Texas Western Press, 2002. McGilchrist, Megan R. The Western Landscape in Cormac McCarthy and Wallace Stegner: Myth of the Frontier. New York: Routledge, 2010. McMurtry, Kim. “'Some Improvident God': Metaphysical Explorations ...

Author: Manuel Broncano

Publisher: Routledge

ISBN: 9781317915317

Category: Literary Criticism

Page: 195

View: 798

This book addresses the religious scope of Cormac McCarthy’s fiction, one of the most controversial issues in studies of his work. Current criticism is divided between those who find a theological dimension in his works, and those who reject such an approach on the grounds that the nihilist discourse characteristic of his narrative is incompatible with any religious message. McCarthy’s tendencies toward religious themes have become increasingly more acute, revealing that McCarthy has adopted the biblical language and rhetoric to compose an "apocryphal" narrative of the American Southwest while exploring the human innate tendency to evil in the line of Herman Melville and William Faulkner, both literary progenitors of the writer. Broncano argues that this apocryphal narrative is written against the background of the Bible, a peculiar Pentateuch in which Blood Meridian functions as the Book of Genesis, the Border Trilogy functions as the Gospels, and No Country for Old Men as the Book of Revelation, while The Road is the post-apocalyptic sequel. This book analyzes the novels included in what Broncano defines as the South-Western cycle (from Blood Meridian to The Road) in search of the religious foundations that support the narrative architecture of the texts.
Categories: Literary Criticism

Philosophical Approaches to Cormac McCarthy

Philosophical Approaches to Cormac McCarthy

Character Flight in the Novels of Cormac McCarthy (New York: Routledge, 2006), 1. ... and Megan McGilchrist's comparative project The Western Landscape in Cormac McCarthy and Wallace Stegner: Myths of the Frontier (2010).

Author: Christopher Eagle

Publisher: Routledge

ISBN: 9781317435297

Category: Literary Criticism

Page: 224

View: 482

This book is the first edited collection to explore the role of philosophy in the works of Cormac McCarthy, significantly expanding the scope of philosophical inquiry into McCarthy’s writings. There is a strong and growing interest amongst philosophers in the relevance of McCarthy’s writings to key debates in contemporary philosophy, for example, debates on trauma and violence, on the relationship between language and world, and the place of the subject within history, temporality, and borders. To this end, the contributors to this collection focus on how McCarthy’s writings speak to various philosophical themes, including violence, war, nature, history, materiality, and the environment. Emphasizing the form of McCarthy’s texts, the chapters attend to the myriad ways in which his language effects a philosophy of its own, beyond the thematic content of his narratives. Bringing together scholars in contemporary philosophy and McCarthy Studies, and informed by the release of the Cormac McCarthy Papers, the volume reflects on the theoretical relationship between philosophical thinking and literary form. This book will appeal to all scholars working in the rapidly-growing field of McCarthy Studies, Philosophy and Literature, and to philosophers working on a wide range of problems in ethics, aesthetics, epistemology, Philosophy of Nature, and Philosophy of Film across ancient, modern, and contemporary philosophy.
Categories: Literary Criticism

Approaches to Teaching the Works of Cormac McCarthy

Approaches to Teaching the Works of Cormac McCarthy

Stacey Peebles, Benjamin West ... Cormac McCarthy Papers, box 97, folder 5, Southwestern Writers Collection, Wittliff Collections, ... The Western Landscape in Cormac McCarthy and Wallace Stegner: Myths of the Frontier. Routledge, 2010.

Author: Stacey Peebles

Publisher: Modern Language Association

ISBN: 9781603294836

Category: Language Arts & Disciplines

Page: 230

View: 485

In the decades since his 1992 breakout novel, All the Pretty Horses, Cormac McCarthy has gained a reputation as one of the greatest contemporary American authors. Experimenting with genres such as the crime thriller, the post-apocalyptic novel, and the western, his work also engages with the aesthetics of cinema, and several of his novels have been adapted for the screen. While timely and relevant, his works' idiosyncratic language and intense, troubling portrayals of racism, sexism, and violence can pose challenges for students. This volume offers strategies for guiding students through McCarthy's oeuvre, addressing all his novels as well as his published plays and screenplays. Part 1, "Materials," provides sources of biographical information and key scholarship on McCarthy. Essays in part 2, "Approaches," discuss subjects such as landscape and ecology, mythologies of the American West, film adaptations, and literary contexts, and describe assignments that encourage students to write creatively and to examine their personal values.
Categories: Language Arts & Disciplines

Morality in Cormac McCarthy s Fiction

Morality in Cormac McCarthy s Fiction

Blood Meridian; or, The Evening Redness in the West. ... The Western Landscape in Cormac McCarthy and Wallace Stegner: Myths of the Frontier. ... “'Some Improvident God': Metaphysical Explorations in McCarthy's Border Trilogy.

Author: Russell M. Hillier

Publisher: Springer

ISBN: 9783319469577

Category: Literary Criticism

Page: 317

View: 189

This book argues that McCarthy’s works convey a profound moral vision, and use intertextuality, moral philosophy, and questions of genre to advance that vision. It focuses upon the ways in which McCarthy’s fiction is in ceaseless conversation with literary and philosophical tradition, examining McCarthy’s investment in influential thinkers from Marcus Aurelius to Hannah Arendt, and poets, playwrights, and novelists from Dante and Shakespeare to Fyodor Dostoevsky and Antonio Machado. The book shows how McCarthy’s fiction grapples with abiding moral and metaphysical issues: the nature and problem of evil; the idea of God or the transcendent; the credibility of heroism in the modern age; the question of moral choice and action; the possibility of faith, hope, love, and goodness; the meaning and limits of civilization; and the definition of what it is to be human. This study will appeal alike to readers, teachers, and scholars of Cormac McCarthy.
Categories: Literary Criticism

Intertextual and Interdisciplinary Approaches to Cormac McCarthy

Intertextual and Interdisciplinary Approaches to Cormac McCarthy

The Western Landscape in Cormac McCarthy and Wallace Stegner: Myths of the Frontier. London: Routledge, 2010. Moskowitz, Jennifer. “The Cultural Myth of the Cowboy, or, How the West Was Won.” Americana: The Journal of American Popular ...

Author: Nicholas Monk

Publisher: Routledge

ISBN: 9781136636066

Category: Literary Criticism

Page: 209

View: 739

This collection offers a fresh approach to the work of Cormac McCarthy, one of the most important contemporary American authors. Essays focus on his work across the genres and/or in constellation with other writers and artists, presenting not only a different "angle" on the work, but setting him within a broader literary and artistic context. Such an approach offers a view of McCarthy that is strikingly different to previous collections that have dealt with the work in an almost exclusively "single author" and/or "single genre" mode. McCarthy’s novels are increasingly regarded as amongst the most rich, the most complex, and the most insightful of all recent literary responses to prevailing conditions in both the USA and beyond, and this collection recognizes the intertextual and interdisciplinary nature of his work. Contributors draw back the curtain on some of McCarthy’s literary ancestors, revealing and analyzing some of the fiction’s key contemporary intertexts, and showing a complex and previously underestimated hinterland of influence. In addition, they look beyond the novel both to other genres in McCarthy’s oeuvre, and to the way these genres have influenced McCarthy’s writing.
Categories: Literary Criticism

Frontier Justice in the Novels of James Fenimore Cooper and Cormac McCarthy

Frontier Justice in the Novels of James Fenimore Cooper and Cormac McCarthy

McCarthy, Cormac. All the Pretty Horses. 1992. ... Blood Meridian, or The Evening Redness in the West. 1985. London: Picador, 2002. —. ... The Western Landscape in Cormac McCarthy and Wallace Stegner: Myths of the Frontier.

Author: Daniel Davis Wood

Publisher: Cambridge Scholars Publishing

ISBN: 9781443896542

Category: Literary Criticism

Page: 265

View: 771

James Fenimore Cooper and Cormac McCarthy are two of the most celebrated and influential writers of the American West. Both have written powerful narratives that focus on the disappearance of the nineteenth century frontier, and both show an interest in the dramatic ways in which the frontier gave shape to American culture. But is it possible that the kinship between these two writers extends beyond simply sharing an interest in this subject? Teasing out the implications of the recurrent allusions to Cooper’s Leatherstocking Tales in the pages of McCarthy’s Southwestern novels, this book finds Cooper and McCarthy engaged in a complex legal and ethical dialogue despite the centuries that separate their lives and their work. The result of their dialogue is a provocative, nuanced analysis of the effects of the frontier on the American justice system – and, for both writers, an expression of alarm at the violation of the principles upon which the system was established.
Categories: Literary Criticism

Literary Geography An Encyclopedia of Real and Imagined Settings

Literary Geography  An Encyclopedia of Real and Imagined Settings

“Mapping Cormac McCarthy's No Country for Old Men.” The Midwest Quarterly 58, no. 4 (2017): 433. McGilchrist, Megan Riley. The Western Landscape in Cormac McCarthy and Wallace Stegner: Myths of the Frontier.

Author: Lynn M. Houston

Publisher: ABC-CLIO

ISBN: 9781440842559

Category: Social Science

Page: 381

View: 266

This reference investigates the role of landscape in popular works and in doing so explores the time in which they were written. • Discusses books and poems covered on the AP English Literature and Composition exam, the most-assigned pieces of literature on high school reading lists, and well-loved contemporary books • Examines specific pieces of literature in the geographical and historical context in which they were written, making this book especially relevant to core curriculum standards • Provides comprehensive content that is unique in the library market • Includes recommendations of complimentary works • Features organization alphabetical by work, making it easy to navigate • Maintains an accessible style useful for high school and general education college courses
Categories: Social Science