Andrew Robards

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Andrew will be preparing a paper that examines how Australian artists and filmmakers interrogate cultural myths through the appropriation of the Classic Western’s aesthetic and structural qualities. Taking two prominent Australian ‘Westerns’ as case studies, Shame (1988) directed by Steve Jodrell and Sweet Country (2018) directed by Warwick Thornton, the paper traces how the the Classic Western’s generic formation is leveraged to question popular undercurrents in Australian cultural myth. Ultimately the films and works explored serve as examples of how the appropriation of Classical Western's structural and aesthetic formations transcend the genre’s original context (telling stories rooted in American history). The cinematic form becomes a valuable framework to revise and re-imagine contemporary relationships with popular myths and accepted social structures.