Introduction The United States is highly known competitive country with highly diversified culture. According to Hofstede, a country having a culture like this has high level of masculinity impact (Soonthornsawad 22). Indeed, America is known to be male-dominated society, the very proof is its consistent reliance on the power of man to lead and even to be relied on as the one worthy to be given with the highest authority in the state…
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Today, they come to life in many high-calibrated movie films. However, they do not just come alive in these movie films, but they are perfect portrayal of the American way of viewing masculinity. Such vision of masculinity can also be viewed within the cowboy culture. This paper tries to discuss how American perceptions of an ideal hero relate to our common ideas of masculinity, and how this vision is portrayed in the fiction “Cowboy” written by Thomas McGuane. Cowboy The cowboy culture is known for being able to outlaw violence, possess physical prowess, and self-made success (Flood 114). These all reveal the classic views of American masculinity which correspondingly are depicted in movie films that try to emphasize the supernatural powers of superheroes. In fact, the main themes of these films significantly show substantial level of information on the main characters’ way of outlawing violence, and obtaining physical prowess and self-made success. The violence for instance is a perfect portrayal of an evil act and overcoming it is such a good gesture which is highly commendable by the society. Outlawing of violence requires substantial amount of power, energy and something to that effect in the same way with obtaining physical prowess and self-made success. All these characteristics are viewed to be a “must possess” by men in a society where there is strong importance given to competitiveness which is one of the indicators of masculinity based on Hofstede’s theory of cultural dimension. This scenario is perfectly portrayed in the fiction “Cowboy” by Thomas McGuane. “…and they had it positioned by the door of the barn so it’d be convenient for the hired man to stagger out at all hours and fight breech births and scours and any other disorder sent us by cow gods. We had some doozies. One heifer got pregnant and her calf was near as big as she was. Had to reach in with a saw and take it out in pieces” (McGuane 2). This entirely depicts the picture of how the cowboys invest their time in trying to save life and stand on their ground when a need for their strength and time arises. When push comes to shove, they are to maximize their strength, come up with initiative and understand that everything counts within a specified time. This is one of the common scenarios found in ranches by an animal herder such as the cowboys in the story. They also are normally not distracted by various mishaps in life, rather their ultimate vision is about moving on. “Only mishap was when the manure spreader threw a rock and knocked me senseless and I drove the rig into an irrigation ditch. The old sumbitch never said a word but chained up and pulled us out with his Ford” (2). This scene in the story depicts the remarkable attitude possessed by the old lady’s brother, a cowboy, towards moving on. Without a word, he did what he believed is appropriate and no amount of words for blames was uttered. It depicts how man is expected to prove himself in the midst of situations where what is only required is his physical strength and strong conviction to face certain situation in order to move on. There was no turning back, but the ultimate way is to move forward, go find for solution, look out for the best move and implement it, “…never said a word
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