A new book has been released that takes a look at the mythology and continued resonance of the Western cowboy. Even Cowboys Carry Cell Phones (2013) is a literary anthology that draws on the history and symbolism of the cowboy in a collection of works from some 35 contributors, ranging from short story to poem.

Cowboys & Cell Phones

Published by Western Press Books in association with the University Press of Colorado, Even Cowboys Carry Cell Phones is described by the publishers as covering a wide variety of cowboy figures from rancher to movie cowboy to the wrangler of today wearing a hoodie while working in a feedlot.

There has been a strong public attachment to the cowboy figure from the late 19th century onward. The literary and cinematic figure of a lone individual, travelling unencumbered across an open West and bringing a strong moral code to bear against those who seek to take advantage, has been a powerful symbol for those who have felt oppressed in their own lives. In the 19th century, that audience included non-unionized factory workers trapped in company-owned tenement housing in eastern North America. Today, the publishers argue, that audience includes those who feel confined by the e-world of urban office work. That said, this collection does acknowledge that today’s cowboy is also connected and he or she does often carry a cell phone travelling across the West.

For further information about Even Cowboys Carry Cell Phones, please visit this link: Cowboys & Cell Phones.

(Copyright – Chad Beharriell) 


      1. The poor cowboys were free for such a short period of time. The soldiers were never really free, I guess, but as a novelist the tension between the soldiers, settlers, Indians and Mexicans gives me so much to think about. It’s fun to see how few soldiers in the West actually stuck to their uniforms–most of them ended up looking like cowboys. The Indians who became cowboys once the buffaloes were hunted down interest me also. How do any of us attain freedom without infringing on other’s freedom–I always ask myself without coming up with a real answer.

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