Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
ReFocus: The Films of Delmer Daves$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

Matthew Carter and Andrew Nelson

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9781474403016

Published to Edinburgh Scholarship Online: September 2017

DOI: 10.3366/edinburgh/9781474403016.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM EDINBURGH SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.edinburgh.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Edinburgh University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in ESO for personal use.date: 08 March 2021

Home and the Range: Spencer’s Mountain as Revisionist Family Melodrama

Home and the Range: Spencer’s Mountain as Revisionist Family Melodrama

(p.135) Chapter 6 Home and the Range: Spencer’s Mountain as Revisionist Family Melodrama
ReFocus: The Films of Delmer Daves

Joseph Pomp

Edinburgh University Press

Joseph Pomp offers an analysis of Spencer’s Mountain, a film Daves’ adapted from the novel by Earl Hamner Jr. He observes that Daves’ lack of recognition by auteur theorists was that he often delved into melodramatic themes in his Westerns, themes out of favour with those who preferred the course masculinity of a John Ford or a Raoul Walsh, and who associated the melodrama with a female audience. Pomp suggests that Spencer’s Mountain provides a key window into Daves’ views on American family values, education, and class, arguing that Daves deconstructed melodrama’s ‘classic realist’ paradigm by considering a nascent feminist agenda that undermines the patriarchal underpinnings of the source novel. This, argues Pomp, creates an unusual mix – rendering Spencer’s Mountain different from most other Westerns of the period but also different from most melodramas. Ultimately, Pomp argues, Spencer’s Mountain suggests that fierce, heroic individualism has no place in Daves’ cinematic universe.

Keywords:   Melodrama, Western, American Family, Class, Patriarchy, 1960s

Edinburgh Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs, and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us.