A Republic of Men: The American Founders, Gendered Language, and Patriarchal Politics

A Republic of Men: The American Founders, Gendered Language, and Patriarchal Politics

by Mark E. Kann
     
 

What role did manhood play in early American Politics? In A Republic of Men, Mark E. Kann argues that the American founders aspired to create a "republic of men" but feared that "disorderly men" threatened its birth, health, and longevity. Kann demonstrates how hegemonic norms of manhood-exemplified by "the Family Man," for instance--were deployed as a means

…  See more details below

Overview

What role did manhood play in early American Politics? In A Republic of Men, Mark E. Kann argues that the American founders aspired to create a "republic of men" but feared that "disorderly men" threatened its birth, health, and longevity. Kann demonstrates how hegemonic norms of manhood-exemplified by "the Family Man," for instance--were deployed as a means of stigmatizing unworthy men, rewarding responsible men with citizenship, and empowering exceptional men with positions of leadership and authority, while excluding women from public life.

Kann suggests that the founders committed themselves in theory to the democratic proposition that all men were created free and equal and could not be governed without their own consent, but that they in no way believed that "all men" could be trusted with equal liberty, equal citizenship, or equal authority. The founders developed a "grammar of manhood" to address some difficult questions about public order. Were America's disorderly men qualified for citizenship? Were they likely to recognize manly leaders, consent to their authority, and defer to their wisdom? A Republic of Men compellingly analyzes the ways in which the founders used a rhetoric of manhood to stabilize American politics.

Read More

Editorial Reviews

Booknews
An analysis of the writings and speeches of the American founders. Kann (political science, U. of Southern Calif.) looks at how the founders deployed a "grammar of manhood" that provided informal rules for stigmatizing disorderly men, justifying citizenship for deserving men, and elevating exceptional men to positions of leadership and political authority. He also points out how this grammar precluded women from participating in what became a republic of men, and the legacy of the founders' gendered language in later American history. Annotation c. by Book News, Inc., Portland, Or.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780814747131
Publisher:
New York University Press
Publication date:
04/01/1998
Pages:
248
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x (d)

Meet the Author

Mark E. Kann, Professor Emeritus of Political Science and History, held the USC Associates Chair in Social Science at the University of Southern California. He is the author of Republic of Men (NYU Press, 1998) and Punishment, Prisons, and Patriarchy (NYU Press, 2005).

Customer Reviews

Average Review:

Write a Review

and post it to your social network

     

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See all customer reviews >