Gender, Sex, And Subordination In England, 1500-1800 / Edition 1

Gender, Sex, And Subordination In England, 1500-1800 / Edition 1

by Anthony Fletcher
     
 

ISBN-10: 0300076509

ISBN-13: 9780300076509

Pub. Date: 03/01/1999

Publisher: Yale University Press

Men and women in early modern England lived their lives within a social and gender framework inherited from biblical times. Patriarchy-the social and cultural dominance of the male-has long been a fundamental feature of western civilization yet has only recently begun to be systematically investigated by historians. This book is the first attempt to provide a rounded…  See more details below

Overview

Men and women in early modern England lived their lives within a social and gender framework inherited from biblical times. Patriarchy-the social and cultural dominance of the male-has long been a fundamental feature of western civilization yet has only recently begun to be systematically investigated by historians. This book is the first attempt to provide a rounded portrait of its workings over a long stretch of the English past.

Anthony Fletcher's account draws from a vast range of sources-literary, medical, religious, and historical-to investigate the mechanisms through which men and women interpreted and understood their social worlds. He explores the early modern view of the body, of sexual desire and appetites, and of gender difference. He looks at the nature of marital relationships and shows how subordination was implemented and consolidated through church, school, home, and community. And in a text that is poignant, humane, and beautifully written, he exposes patriarchy's tragic consequences: smothered opportunity, crushed sexuality, and a pall across many women's lives.

Yet, over these three centuries, the conventional foundations of male superiority came under acute pressure. Fletcher reveals the depth of male anxiety in the face of women's volatility, verbal assertiveness, and alleged vibrant sexuality, and he shows how the gender system began to be transformed as men sought to detach it from its biblical foundations and inculcate gender identities on something like their modern ideological basis. This revolution in the entire premise upon which gender was grounded is fundamental to an understanding of the structure of English society today.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780300076509
Publisher:
Yale University Press
Publication date:
03/01/1999
Edition description:
New Edition
Pages:
490
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 1.09(d)

Table of Contents

List of Plates
Preface and Acknowledgements
Abbreviations
Introduction
Pt. IBefore the Gendered Body1
1Prologue: Men's Dilemmas3
2Functional Anatomies30
3Fungible Fluids, Heat and Concoction44
4The Weaker Vessel60
5Effeminacy and Manhood83
Pt. IIThe Working of Patriarchy99
6Prologue: Prescription and Honour Codes101
7The Gentry and Honour126
8Husbands and Wives: Case Studies154
9Living Together173
10Marital Violence192
11Household Order204
12Men's Work, Women's Work223
13Beyond the Household256
Pt. IIITowards Modern Gender281
14Prologue: New Thinking, New Knowledge283
15Educating Boys297
16The Construction of Masculinity322
17Women and Religion347
18Educating Girls364
19The Construction of Femininity376
20Gender, Patriarchy and Early Modern Society401
Bibliography414
Index434

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