>Is the Western simply any story whose setting is the American frontier
>between the Mississippi and the coast of California? Or is it any story
>whose setting is a "frontier", i.e. any geographically remote and
>climatically harsh environment (not necessarily American), and whose plot
>concerns the efforts to "civilize" that environment?

I understand that the scene sequence in Taxi Driver, where Travis is getting
all gunned up, is a direct reference to the more traditional Western. A
modern outsider in an uncivilised environment? Plenty of irony...

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