STRUCTURALISM

   Structuralism is a critical theory that became dominant for a short time in the 1970s and 1980s. Because it was partly a reaction to New Criticism, it reevaluated forms of literature and art previously considered non-art, such as Westerns. By the 1980s, makers of cinema Westerns were reevaluating their own genre, and thus structuralist critics were able to decontextualize the films from their associations with low culture and bad taste and to examine the multiple structures of narrative in relation to archetypes, myths, and symbolism. The problem with structuralism as with New Criticism was that it ignored cultural contexts and thus had no way of dealing with such pressing issues as women and Native Americans in Westerns, or with early century American imperialism and colonialism in Westerns. While structuralist critics such as Will Wright in Six Guns and Society (1974) and John G. Cawelti in his original SixGun Mystique (1984) gave Westerns critical respectability, it remained for the cultural critics of the 1990s, such as Richard Slotkin and Jane Tompkins, to open the way for postmodern critical acceptance of cinema Westerns.

Historical Dictionary of Westerns in Cinema. . 2012.

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  • structuralism — STRUCTURALÍSM s.n. Teorie lingvistică contemporană care susţine că limba este un sistem autonom, că alcătuieşte o structură în care diversele părţi se află în relaţii şi se condiţionează reciproc. ♦ p. gener. Teorie şi metodă aplicată în domeniul …   Dicționar Român

  • structuralism —    Structuralism has made an impact in several disciplines, particularly linguistics, anthropology, psychology and literature. The key initial theorist was the Swiss linguist Ferdinand de Saussure (1857–1913). Saussure argued that language was a… …   Encyclopedia of contemporary British culture

  • structuralism — (n.) 1907, originally in psychology; see STRUCTURAL (Cf. structural) + ISM (Cf. ism) …   Etymology dictionary

  • structuralism — [struk′chər əliz΄əm] n. 1. a movement for determining and analyzing the basic, relatively stable structural elements of a system, esp. in the behavioral sciences 2. STRUCTURAL LINGUISTICS …   English World dictionary

  • Structuralism — For the use of structuralism in biology, see Structuralism (biology) Structuralism is an approach to the human sciences that attempts to analyze a specific field (for instance, mythology) as a complex system of interrelated parts. It began in… …   Wikipedia

  • structuralism — structuralist, n., adj. structuralistic, adj. /struk cheuhr euh liz euhm/, n. 1. any theory that embodies structural principles. 2. See structural anthropology. 3. See structural linguistics. 4. See …   Universalium

  • structuralism — At the most general level the term is used loosely in sociology to refer to any approach which regards social structure (apparent or otherwise) as having priority over social action. More specifically, however, it refers to a particular… …   Dictionary of sociology

  • structuralism — A general intellectual movement whose headquarters have been in France, and whose heyday was in the 1960s. The common feature of structuralist positions is the belief that phenomena of human life are not intelligible except through their… …   Philosophy dictionary

  • Structuralism — an approach or theory that studies underlying structural relationships between concepts. • Post structuralism a varied reaction to structuralism that views the signifier and signified as inseparable, but not united …   Mini philosophy glossary

  • structuralism — noun a) A theory of sociology that views elements of society as part of a cohesive self supporting structure. b) A school of biological thought that deals with the law like behaviour of the structure of organisms and how it can change,… …   Wiktionary

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