Class Notes (806,637)
Canada (492,371)
York University (33,489)
Humanities (1,633)
HUMA 1970 (53)
Lecture 5

Worlds of Childhood - Week 5.docx

7 Pages
Unlock Document

York University
HUMA 1970
Krys Verrall

Historic Heteroessentialism and Other Orderings in Early America By: Jennifer Manion • Influence of historical narrative is most apparent concerning the period of the nation’s founding, and this is often demonstrated by those who seek to maintain structures of racist and sexist oppression • These studies are sophisticated in their attempt to integrate analysis of gender as well as of women, the experiences of women of different races as well as how the race functions, and sexuality in terms of desire and intimacy, as well as how the power frames and gives meaning to sexuality o History Matters: Patriarchy and the Challenge of Feminism by: Judith Bennett  She finds two problems with the state of women’s and gender history: • Depoliticization of recent scholarship • Neglect of female scholars, including women’s historians, of the pre-modern past and the lessons it holds for us  Three explanations for this presentist read: • The loss of the belief that women experienced a golden age in the pre-modern era • A lack of interest in historical perspective among feminist scholars in other disciplines • Shifting attention toward a study of women’s history beyond the West  Aim of this essay is to highlight recent trends in the field of women’s and gender history in early North America and to demonstrate why it holds value for feminist academics and activists alike  Lucy Kerber showed that women were indeed valued members of the new republic and were held to be important political agents despite not having access to formal political authority or power. • Instead, women were important because in their role as mothers they shaped the next generation of republican citizens o In Good Wives, Nasty Wenches, and Anxious Patriarchs by: Kathleen Brown  Analysis of how intersections of gender and race shaped several important developments in the history of slavery in Virginia, including how cultural differences in gender roles informed the conflicts between Native Americans and English colonists and how racial slavery was given legitimacy and meaning through gender differences  The instability of identities by showing how those in pursuit of social, political, and economic power constructed and manipulated social differences  Feminists activists have been arguing that race and gender are inseparable in analysis of identity, experience, and systems of power and oppression  Two major themes will be focused on: • The impact of the American Revolution and its role in shaping women’s educational, political and sexual opportunities and decisions • The arrival of sexual studies o The essay will focus on finding things in relation to feminist theoretical/methodological issues (agency, oppression) intersecting identities (impact of gender studies on women’s studies) and the value of theories of power o Rape and Sexual Power in Early America by: Sharon Block  Many of the dominant social attitudes towards rape victims and likely perpetrators have remained quite consistent throughout American history: • A woman’s sexual past, social standing, a verifiable effort to resist, and willingness to report the attack would all determine her believability as a victim  Male family members of the victim determined whether or not a public accusation would be made – and how seriously it would be taken  The social status of the accused and his relationship with the victim determined the likelihood that a man would be found guilty but nothing weighed as heavily as race  Men of African descent, regardless of class or accuser, were always regarded as the suspect when rape was alleged  Gender roles, and the perception of a woman’s ability to exercise control of her sexual desire or willingly consent, were also rooted in dominant perceptions of racial difference o Sex among the Rabble: An Intimate History of Gender and Power in the Age of Revolution by: Clare Lyons  The impact of the American Revolution on women’s lives and the role of sexuality in this process  Talks about sexual practices in Philadelphia  The American Revolution led to a tightening of sexual norms  Lyons traces this development through popular culture, social custom, and increasingly enforced laws  Middle and upper class white men still maintained a wide range of sexual privileges but their female counterparts were held to a more rigorous standards of virtue and sexual repression o Learning to Stand and Speak: Women, Education, and Public Life in America’s Republic by: Mary Kelly  Despite the power afforded them by their increasing access to education and opportunities to express their ideas in print, even this group of women experienced domesticity as the defining aspect of their lives  Class status is the most significant marker that shaped the experience of interracial couples • Interracial relationships among lower class (North Carolina) were viewed as threatening because of their potential to blur the lines of racial difference through mixed-race children and to facilitate other cross-racial social and political alliances  Women used their access to reading, writing, and oratory skills to speak their minds, to engage in political discussions, and occasionally to challenge their subordinate position to men. o Not All Wives: Women of Colonial Philadelphia by: Karin Wulf  Expands our understanding of women’s lives by showing how single women navigated the colonial city with autonomy and authority, shaping the economic, cultural, and social landscape as much as it shaped them  Viewing marriage as a small part of women’s lives rather than as the central defining moment gives new weight to the significance of other areas of women’s lives  By looking at a broader view of women’s economic, familial, political, and social relationships, we can see the systems that shaped the parameters of their sexual and relational freedom o Sex and the Eighteenth-Century Man: Massachusetts and the History of Sexuality in America by: Thomas Foster  Examines the range of institutions that gave meaning to and set the limits for male sexual expression  Men of African descent were more likely to be convicted of rape o Ye Heart of a Man: The Domestic Life of Men in Colonial New England by: Lisa Wilson & A Republic of Men: The American Founders, Gendered Language, and Patriarchal Politics by: Mark Kann  Developments in the field of men’s studies, however, have exacerbated the concerns of feminists whose decades of efforts led to the institutional space for gender studies in the first place o Peace Came in the Form of Woman: Indians and Spaniards in the Texas Borderlands by: Juliana Barr  Analyzes gender and power while maintaining women as the central figures of the study  Shows the important roles women played within male-dominated political, economic and diplomatic systems in spite of the fact that her archival sources privilege the perspectives and experiences of men  Marriage to a Native woman signalled a white man’s stability and trustworthiness by virtue of his entering her family’s kin system • To truly build and inspire a broad-based social movement to end sex
More Less

Related notes for HUMA 1970

Log In


Don't have an account?

Join OneClass

Access over 10 million pages of study
documents for 1.3 million courses.

Sign up

Join to view


By registering, I agree to the Terms and Privacy Policies
Already have an account?
Just a few more details

So we can recommend you notes for your school.

Reset Password

Please enter below the email address you registered with and we will send you a link to reset your password.

Add your courses

Get notes from the top students in your class.