Cowboy Subculture Paper

Topics: Cowboy, Saddle, Western riding Pages: 4 (1634 words) Published: March 12, 2012
Cowboy Culture

The word cowboy brings to mind images of the old west, mostly movies. Ten gallon hats, boots, spurs, horses, revolvers and of course cows. In todays society the term cowboy or cowgirl isn’t always a favorable one. It can mean ignorant, country, reckless, or just refer to boots and hats. Are Cowboys even still around? Not the “wanna be” hat on the weekend’s type of person, the genuine article. The answer may surprise you. In today’s modern world, cowboys aren’t just still around; they have developed into the subculture in which I belong. The cowboy subculture can be found all across the United States and Hawaii. What is the Cowboy Culture and who belongs in it? The cowboy culture is made up of many different types of people from many different backgrounds. The cowboy culture is made up of working cowboys, professional rodeo cowboys, arena cowboys and cowgirls, Cattle people, horse people, and cowboy mentality people. The word cowboy originated from earlier terms translated from vaquero, a Spanish word for an individual who managed cattle while mounted on horseback. Originally Cowboy was a literal term, to describe a job like lawyer or Doctor. Cowboys started their profession at an early age, it took years to be able to handle both horse and cattle with some skill, so cowboys were hired on as young as 12 or 13.These boys could look forward to handling cattle and horses for the larger outfits the rest of his adult life if he was lucky enough to avoid serious injury. At that time quite a few women also took on the tasks of ranching and learned the necessary skills, though the "cowgirl didn’t come into being until the 19th century and only then in the wild west shows. On western ranches today, even though the working cowboy is a grown man, the subculture of the cowboy is a lot of times one you are born into. Children of today, both boys and girls that are raised on a ranch are expected to learn to ride and understand how to care for...
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