The Western Frontier

Decent Essays
The subject of the effects of the western frontier on the life of men, women and children was present in many of the movies and readings of this semester. The settling of the western frontier brought on many issues that affected men, women and children. Many of those issues prevented families from thriving. Some of the most common things to do on the frontier were mining, farming and ranching and shooting. Life was hard and family life was affected; mainly marriage and rearing of children. Oh Pioneers, Brokeback Mountain, and True Grit have great examples of how the frontier affected families.
The life of most women was very difficult due to the hardships they had to undergo; most of the time in trying to make ends meet for their families.
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People did not have time to develop meaningful romantic relationships that could lead to the creation of strong families. Not only was time a factor but also the fact that various types of work led to isolation and separation. As a result, many men and women lived single lives. In the case where they managed to have children, they were brought up in the absence of parental care and this exposed them to difficulties that adversely affected their life. Consequently, they were unable to forge romantic relations as they could not fully forget the old memories, and it was common that they could not trust people of opposite gender. For example, in the novel True Grit by Portis, Mattie Ross in unable to lead a normal life as she is mentally disturbed by her father's death. Her father was killed by a gang led by Tom Chaney when she was 14 years old. Despite her tender age, she embarked on a brave mission to avenge her father’s death. As a result, she lures Marshal Reuben and La Boeuf. In the process of fighting for the death of her father, she led a lonely life and by the near age of forty she was still unmarried. Although Mattie’s character was intelligent, brave and determined, the lack of family in her life sets her back. Therefore, the movie vividly shows how life on the western frontier also affected the life of
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