By Leigh Clemons
Ask an individual to call an archetypal Texan, and you are prone to get a larger-than-life personality from movie or tv (say John Wayne's Davy Crockett or J. R. Ewing of TV's Dallas) or a political candidate with that definite swagger (think LBJ or George W. Bush). that every one of those figures are white and male and bursting with self-confidence isn't any twist of fate, asserts Leigh Clemons. during this considerate research of what makes a ''Texan,'' she finds how Texan id grew out of the history--and, much more, the myth--of the heroic deeds played by means of Anglo males in the course of the Texas Revolution and the years of the Republic and the way this id is developed and maintained via theatre and different representational practices. Clemons seems to be at a variety of venues during which ''Texanness'' is played, together with old websites similar to the Alamo, the battlefield at Goliad, and the San Jacinto Monument; museums equivalent to the Bob Bullock Texas nation historical past Museum; seasonal open air dramas akin to Texas! at Palo Duro Canyon; movies corresponding to John Wayne's The Alamo and the IMAX's Alamo: the cost of Freedom; performs and television indicates akin to the Tuna trilogy, Dallas, and King of the Hill; and the Cavalcade of Texas functionality on the 1936 Texas Centennial. She persuasively demonstrates that those performances have created a Texan id that has develop into a model, a commodity that may be offered to the general public or even manipulated for political reasons.
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Extra info for Branding Texas: Performing Culture in the Lone Star State
The theatrical nature of its representation contains an implicit critique of the Texan cultural identity. ” Quanah Parker will no longer introduce his father, Nocona, in a pivotal party scene; the old chief was long dead when Parker made peace with the Panhandle settlers. Now, he introduces three of his seven wives, breaking apart the heretofore stereotypical musical theatre depiction of male-female relationships and inserting a transgressive, if imperialistically depicted, gender dynamic into this Texan landscape.
The road to the amphitheater takes one down into the heart of the canyon and its resident ﬂora and fauna (cars often share the parking lot with a diamondback or two, which are wrangled into sacks by stagehands and released in lesstraﬃcked areas). The back wall of the stage is a three hundred–foot cliﬀ face, which serves as backdrop and delimiter of the stage space itself. The forestage area gradually merges backward into a section of natural landscape which slopes toward the wall of the canyon.
The chapel). If a visitor ignores or is ignorant of these rules, one of the helpful docents—most of them members of the DRT—is quick to remind him or her to be reverent. The completion of the Alamo Cenotaph in 1939 (a project begun during the Texas Centennial Celebration) capped the grandeur of this space of representation. An epic memorial/tomb for the dead defenders, it renders the images of the major players and the names of all Texans who perished here while performing their sacred duty in perpetuity.