Oral History as Political Resitance:

                                                    Posse and Once Upon a Time in Mexico

   In his essay “Post-modernism and the Western,” Jim Kitses points to a

  resurgence of films from the 1990's that have functioned to redefine the codes

  of the traditional Western, bringing to life the postmodern Western. He

  observes that films like Jim Jarmusch's Dead Man, in its de-stabilization of

  civilized Western values, and Maggie Greenwald's The Ballad of Little Jo, with

  its discourse of empowerment, are illustrations of a progressive genre whose

  frontier is no longer defined by the iconic cowboy hero, but instead by a

  plurality of racial, cultural, and gender-specific terms. Accompanying these

  films in their break from the codes of traditional Western mythology are the

  bold discourses of Mario Van Peebles's Posse and Robert Rodriguez's Once Upon

   a Time in Mexico. As postmodern appropriations of one of cinema's oldest

  genres, each film functions as a reactionary response to totalizing Western

  narratives (embodied in films like Stagecoach and My Darling Clementine),

  destroying dominant existing historical identities, and establishing a unique  

  cultural voice that is aimed specifically at members of their respective

  oppressed groups. A link to the .pdf file can be found here.