Analyzing Mad Men: Critical Essays on the Television Series by Scott F. Stoddart

By Scott F. Stoddart

AMC's episodic drama Mad males has turn into a cultural phenomenon, detailing America's preoccupation with commercialism and photo within the Camelot of Sixties Kennedy-era the USA, whereas self-consciously exploring present preoccupations. The 12 serious essays during this assortment supply a extensive, interdisciplinary method of this hugely appropriate tv exhibit, studying Mad males as a cultural barometer for modern matters with consumerism, capitalism and sexism. issues contain New Historicist parallels among the Nineteen Sixties and the current day, psychoanalytical methods to the convey, the self as commodity, and the "Age of Camelot" as an "Age of Anxiety," between others. a close solid record and episode advisor are incorporated.

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Metaphorically speaking, Pete recognizes that although the Western frontier is closed, there are lands and markets abroad to be dominated. 40 The Contexts of Mad Men The End of Innocence and the Failure of the Archetypes Although these classic literary archetypes — both masculine and feminine — are present throughout the entire series, their presence in the first season is both clearer and more prevalent; the later seasons, however, begin to reveal the breakdown and, ultimately, the failure of these formulations.

But just as Betty’s needs are far more complicated than Don is able to recognize, so, too, are Don’s needs. Betty fits his feminine ideal — the type of girl you marry — but in his mind, she is a wife, not a partner, hence, his continual attraction to complicated, independent and powerful women such as Midge Daniels, Rachel Menken, and Bobbie Barrett. Compared to Betty, Midge appears to have none of the trappings of the middle class: the house in the suburbs, the social legitimacy sanctified by a wedding license, children, or wealth.

Furthermore, Cooper’s romances, The Last of the Mohicans (1826) in particular, deploy adventure plots that portray the American hero as knight errant, rescuing damsels in distress — a solution to the threat presented in the popular captivity narrative and gothic genres — through a sort of glorified, unreal violence that takes a back seat to Bumppo’s “natural” moral integrity and chivalry. This idealized world only existed in frontier romance. In truth, the reality behind Natty Bumppo as a frontier hero means that he is “a man with a gun ...

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