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One of the lasting impressions of the West in American memory and history is the sheer volume of conflict and violence. (Watch the video in Modules on the opening scene in “Gunsmoke,” the longest running prime time TV show in the 20th century.) As we study and think about western history we have to account for violence. What do you think the issues that pitted individuals and groups against each other in a manner that resorted to violent exchanges, in some cases lethal violence? How might a struggle to control critical and valuable natural resources (land, water, minerals including ores and oil, trees, range land for cattle, sheep, buffalo, etc.) have contributed to and generated conflict and violence? Finally, an epic source of western violence saw Native American groups resort to armed struggle in an attempt to control territory and resources need to sustain their way of life. Was there any way these native peoples could have preserved their traditional way of life or were they the inevitable victims of an aggressive age of capitalist expansion?