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From: Tony Williams
English
SIUC
 I think the level of this debate is verging on banality and not getting the
serious attention it deserves. The Western can be both an artistic and
cultural format worthy of close study and appreciation as any other genre.
Many critics (Bazin, Slotkin, etc) have written insightful studies on the
genre.
  Of course, due to the western's tarnished association with the Viet Nam
debacle there has been a tendency to dismiss it as a conservative, war-
mongering, Manifest Destiny structure. But the genre is not entirely the
province of John Wayne wannabees. Despite its decline, the western has seen
many complex interpretations not all of them status-quo. Some historical and
cultural work on this area is needed in future debate, particularly now.