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Weird Westerns. Race, Gender, Genre

Weird Westerns is an exploration of the hybrid western genre—an increasingly popular and visible form that mixes western themes, iconography, settings, and conventions with elements drawn from other genres, such as science fiction, horror, and fantasy.

Despite frequent declarations of the western’s death, the genre is now defined in part by its zombie-like ability to survive in American popular culture in weird, reanimated, and reassembled forms.

The essays in Weird Westerns analyze a wide range of texts, including those by Native American authors Stephen Graham Jones (Blackfeet) and William Sanders (Cherokee); the cult television series Firefly and The Walking Dead; the mainstream feature films Suicide Squad and Django Unchained; the avant-garde and bizarre fiction of Joe R. Lansdale; the tabletop roleplaying game Deadlands: The Weird West; and the comic book series Wynonna Earp.

The essays explore how these weird westerns challenge conventional representations by destabilizing or subverting the centrality of the heterosexual, white, male hero but also often surprisingly reinforce existing paradigms in their inability to imagine an existence outside of colonial frameworks.

Author Bio:
Kerry Fine is an instructor in the Department of English at Arizona State University. Michael K. Johnson is a professor of English at the University of Maine–Farmington. Rebecca M. Lush is an associate professor at California State University, San Marcos. Sara L. Spurgeon is a professor of American literature at Texas Tech University.

Postwestern Horizons:
Postwestern Horizons encourages scholarship which rethinks and reimagines traditional western scholarship by challenging predominant paradigms, including revisionist ones, and dislocating our sense of region. By moving past the West as a national place, process, and idea to more methodologically innovative, transnationally daring, and theoretically fertile horizons of scholarship, this series encourages new ways of conceiving cultural production and reception. Postwestern Horizons encompasses studies of visual culture, environmental studies, literature, history, film studies, and much more.

Weird Westerns
Race, Gender, Genre
Edited by Kerry Fine, Michael K. Johnson, Rebecca M. Lush, and Sara L. Spurgeon
Postwestern Horizons Series
468 pages
Index

Paperback
August 2020
978-1-4962-2178-0
$35.00

Hardcover
August 2020
978-1-4962-2116-2
$70.00

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Weird Westerns.
Race, Gender, Genre

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