Christina said this in a comment in the new beginning thread, and I’m bringing it out here for discussion since it’s not really part of that subject.
“By the time I could remember friends/family were doing PDAs here in KY. Perhaps the South was not as rigid on that score. I really don’t know, but that was why it surprised me so much especially that barn scene right after Ann backhanded Rob. I could not wrap my mind around Cord not even wanting Marty to see him embracing his own wife.
“I am not familiar with the treatment of the Apaches. Being part Cherokee myself I do know the story of The Trail of Tears quite well. It was disgraceful.”
First of all, for anyone who wants some insight into the whole sorry saga with Native Americans, I recommend Dee Brown’s (non-fiction) book, “Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee.” It’s a real eye opener, and I still go back to it for reference sometimes and it can still give me a lump in the throat.
As to the specifics of public displays of affection, I grew up in the north, but I don’t know if that matters so much. Remember that we are talking about a time in which men and women wore gloves at dances so that there would be no accidental touching of flesh to flesh. I’m sure the frontier west was a lot less uptight than civilized places, but those were in general pretty uptight times.
Specifically as to Cord’s behavior in Eyes. I didn’t see the scene Christina is asking about as having anything to do with race or with the conventions of the times. What happened in that scene for me had to do with Cord and his own hang ups and determination not to let anyone glimpse emotion in him – at least any vaguely soft emotion.