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TEXAS - "Everything is bigger in Texas"Dont Mess With Texas...

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“Everything is bigger in Texas”, “Don’t Mess With Texas”, and “God Blessed Texas” are three phrases that extremely well known in the United States and world. Many Texans would argue that “Everything is bigger (and better) in Texas”, because of their Texan pride. Texas is so important to its residents and the rest of the world. While some will point to the shear size of the state, the idea of the cowboy, or its influence on country western music, it can be argued that the attention that follows Texas stems from a certain Mystique that surrounds the state. The Texas Mystique is something unique to the State of Texas. Mystique may be defined as “an aura of heightened value, interest, or meaning surrounding something, arising from attitudes and beliefs that impute special power or mystery to it.” 1 The Texas mystique is a constellation of ideas that come from the creation of the Republic of Texas. The Texas mystique is a belief in the persona and the character of Texas. It is made up of stereotypes that have been formulated over time and have created a sense of nationalism for the residents of Texas. The main values of Texas developed during the time of the Texas Revolution were freedom, justice, and sacrifice, which are still integral parts of what it means to be Texan and how Texas is viewed today. A way that Texas is understood today is due to a heightened historical awareness of the Texas Revolution and Republic, which has created symbolism in a social memory that in turn has created the self-identity of a group. 2 Social memory is the popular knowledge about the past, which is formed by a group of individuals. 3 These individuals need the connection of a common or shared history. If people can be apart of something or at least feel common relation to the history, certain sentiments are formed. The Texas 1 "Mystique.” The American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language . 4th ed. 2000. 2 Tosh, John. The Pursuit of History . 4 th ed. London: Pearson Education Limited, 2006, page 3. 3 Ibid. 1
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Mystique has created a bonding sentiment for people all over the world. For example when traveling throughout the world or even the United States people’s interests become heightened when Texas is mentioned. They will focus on recent media and cultural developments like the hit TV program Dallas, or America’s Team, the Dallas Cowboys, or perhaps Texans’ influence in national politics. These ideas about Texas have been formed because of common social memory and a heightened historical awareness. According to John Tosh, author of The Pursuit of History , historical awareness is important “because our species depends more on experience than on instinct, life can not be lived without the consciousness of a personal past.” 4 For Texas, the transformation of the symbolism within and from outside Texas is important to investigate academically because of the misconceptions in the social memory. According to Texas historian William R. Hogan,
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