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Macmillan Higher Education Palgrave Higher Education

Making Men: The Formation of Elite Male Identities in England, c.1660-1900

A Sourcebook

ISBN 9780230243071
Publication Date July 2012
Formats Hardcover Ebook Paperback 
Publisher Palgrave

The power and status of English male elites were not merely inherited at birth but developed through everyday interactions with family, peers and guardians. Much of these conversations were conducted through correspondence. In this fascinating Sourcebook, Mark Rothery and Henry French present a unique collection of letters which together trace this construction of gender and social identities.

The Formation of Male Elite Identities in England, c.1660-1900:

• reveals the lifelong process of shaping and managing manliness via a range of social agents
• illustrates continuities and changes in the values associated with the landed gentry over the course of the period, and within the male lifecycle
• charts the process from school and university, through to experiences of travel, courtship, marriage and work
• provides a detailed Introduction to the letters, editorial guidance throughout, questions to stimulate discussion, and helpful suggestions for further reading.

MARK ROTHERY Lecturer in History at the University of Northampton, UK.
HENRY FRENCH Professor of Social History at the University of Exeter, UK.

Acknowledgements Preface
Biographies of Principal Correspondents
Courtship and Marriage
Working Life
Concluding Remarks
Appendix: The Landed Gentry Families and their Estates
Bibliography of Primary Sources


This important volume assembles - in an accessible, expertly organized, and well-contextualized format - a collection of personal documents that shed considerable light on both the masculine lifecycle and the ways in which masculine identity formation occurred at the level of the everyday and the mundane in the early modern and modern periods. The focus on the gentry represents a welcome, and much needed, addition to the field of British masculinity studies. Furthermore, in assembling documents across three centuries, the editors remind readers that, while much changed between the years 1660 and 1914, continuities in masculine experiences also remained. This is an invaluable resource for scholars and students interested in the history of the gentry, the early modern and modern family, and British masculine identities.' - Paul R. Deslandes, University of Vermont, USA
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