Savagery and Civilization in John Ford
This chapter discusses how the Cold War consensus was in crisis by the early 1960s because it no longer served as an adequate narrative model to explain and contain its own contradiction. This crisis can be seen in the series of works published between 1961 and 1964 that explicitly ridiculed Cold War paranoia, the military-industrial complex, McCarthyism, sexual and gender conformity, and the politics of Red-baiting. This period also saw the emergence of a new wave of philosophically inclined science-fiction writers in the United States and Britain whose writings deploy sustained metaphorical analyses of the costs and consequences of the Cold War. Television and Hollywood also indicated the collapse of the consensus, with the Hollywood western providing the most compelling narrative of American power during the Cold War.
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