Tarzan as a cultural prism: Ideological Associations in Edgar Rice Burroughs's Tarzan of the Apes

Nora Hadi Q. Alseed
2013 International Journal of Applied Linguistics and English Literature  
More than any other of Burroughs' many creations, Tarzan has become a staple of popular culture. The character functions as a cultural prism, in which the concerns, anxieties, desires, and tastes of particular times and places are encapsulated in such a way to make us look at that context in a different perspective. Burroughs' original Tarzan embodies several of the aspirations, tensions, and failings of the early twentieth-century Unites States. On one hand, the novel refracts a national
more » ... ts a national longing for an unspoiled nature, on another hand, the novel echoes the racism and violence directed at African Americans at this time. Among the creations of Edgar Rice Burroughs' Tarzan was considered to be the most promoted cultural aspect. In 1918, the first version of the novel was developed into motion pictures was estimated to be the first film in popular cinema that had a profit of over one million dollars. In 1930, apart from being made into a film Tarzan was also considered to be a radio show. It was also initiated as the first serial dramatic show along with "Buck Rogers in 25 th Century". Both the shows were introduced on the same day in January 1929. With the development of twentieth century, Tarzan was determined to present better attraction through television, comic books, cartoons, songs, and lunchboxes and even in certain maps. Burroughs bought a ranch and named it after his invention, Tarzan. This was later developed into a town of Tarzan, California. Twenty six books regarding Tarzan have been published by Burroughs whose trend was then followed and published by both authorized and unauthorized authors.
doi:10.7575/aiac.ijalel.v.2n.3p.120 fatcat:ke2oxfomuzac5d4l7rqnxbmkte