The Guardian

Black America saddles up to own its cowboy heritage

African American artists are taking wild west style from the fringes to the cultural mainstream
A Compton cowboy: the horses protect members of the posse from police harassment. Photograph: Richard Vogel/AP

America is never far from the frontier mentality and 2019 is proving no exception, with an African American cultural boom in all things cowboy, known colloquially as “the yee-haw agenda”. Surprised? You should not be. African American cowboys have largely been erased from the record by Hollywood narratives starring John Wayne and Robert Redford, but were estimated to amount to one in four in the wild west. Now artists and musicians seem determined to put a stop to the exclusion with figures including Beyoncé, her sister Solange Knowles and Cardi B adopting western style.

One reason is the increased awareness of the part African Americans played on the western ranges at the end

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