Tramp in America / Edition 1

Tramp in America / Edition 1

by Tim Cresswell
     
 

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ISBN-10: 1861890699

ISBN-13: 9781861890696

Pub. Date: 06/01/2001

Publisher: Reaktion Books, Limited

This book provides the first account of the invention of the tramp as a social type in the United States from the 1870s through the 1930s. Tim Cresswell considers the ways in which the figure of the tramp was imagined and described and how, by the Second World War, it was being reclassified, renamed and rendered invisible. He describes the 'tramp scare' of the late

Overview

This book provides the first account of the invention of the tramp as a social type in the United States from the 1870s through the 1930s. Tim Cresswell considers the ways in which the figure of the tramp was imagined and described and how, by the Second World War, it was being reclassified, renamed and rendered invisible. He describes the 'tramp scare' of the late nineteenth century in terms of the major factors that influenced the tramp's existence: the political and economic climate, the technology of the railroad and the after-effects of the Civil War. He then explores various stereotypes associated with tramps -- for example, the assumption that they were invariably male and therefore a threat to women in domestic environments. Another stereotype prevalent in medical discourse saw tramps as untrustworthy, diseased and of unsound heredity, thus suggesting reasons for their exclusion from democratic processes. Cresswell also examines tramps as comic figures and looks at the work of a number of prominent American photographers, among them Dorothea Lange, which signalled a sympathetic portrayal of this often-despised group. Perhaps most significantly, The Tramp in America calls into question the common assumption that mobility played a central role in the production of American identity.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781861890696
Publisher:
Reaktion Books, Limited
Publication date:
06/01/2001
Series:
BL - Treasures from the Bodleian Library
Edition description:
New Edition
Pages:
256
Product dimensions:
6.34(w) x 9.46(h) x 0.86(d)

Table of Contents

Acknowledgements7
1Tramps, Knowledge and Mobility9
2The Tramp in Context23
3Knowing the Tramp48
4Gendering the Tramp87
5Pathologizing the Tramp110
6Laughter and the Tramp130
7Picturing the Tramp171
Afterword: The Subject Strikes Back219
References222
Select Bibliography242
List of Illustrations249
Index252

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