Political Manhood

Political Manhood

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In a 1907 lecture to Harvard undergraduates, Theodore Roosevelt warned against becoming qtoo fastidious, too sensitive to take part in the rough hurly-burly of the actual work of the world.q Roosevelt asserted that colleges should never qturn out mollycoddles instead of vigorous men, q and cautioned that qthe weakling and the coward are out of place in a strong and free community.q A paradigm of ineffectuality and weakness, the mollycoddle was qall inner life, q whereas his opposite, the qred blood, q was a man of action. Kevin P. Murphy reveals how the popular ideals of American masculinity coalesced around these two distinct categories. Because of its similarity to the emergent qhomosexualq type, the mollycoddle became a powerful rhetorical figure, often used to marginalize and stigmatize certain political actors. Issues of masculinity not only penetrated the realm of the elite, however. Murphy's history follows the redefinition of manhood across a variety of classes, especially in the work of late nineteenth-century reformers, who trumpeted the virility of the laboring classes. By highlighting this cross-class appropriation, Murphy challenges the oppositional model commonly used to characterize the relationship between political qmachinesq and social and municipal reformers at the turn of the twentieth century. He also revolutionizes our understanding of the gendered and sexual meanings attached to political and ideological positions of the Progressive Era.... Cartoon Attacks on Harpera#39;s Weekly Editor George William Curtis and the Mugwumps in the Presidential Campaign of 1884 ... On the periodical press and this perceived feminization, see Ann Douglas, The Feminization of American Cultureanbsp;...

Title:Political Manhood
Author:Kevin P. Murphy
Publisher:Columbia University Press - 2013-08-13


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