With your peers, write down as many characteristics as you can of the American "cowboy" as he is portrayed in American popular culture. See what our class generated below (thanks to the typing talents of Christy!):
After reading E. Martin Pedersen's "The Dreary Life of the Cowboy: Memoir and Myth in Cowboy Ballads", use it as a source and please post comments that you believe contradict the myth of the cowboy. What most surprised you about the "reality" of cowboy life?