Men, women and the bottle: gender relations and alcohol in nineteenth-century American temperance drama

Holmberg, Elsa Julia (2015). Men, women and the bottle: gender relations and alcohol in nineteenth-century American temperance drama. University of Birmingham. M.Phil.

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This work forms an analysis of temperance dramas published between 1832 and 1892 from a standpoint of gender and gendered spaces, to gain a perspective on how alcohol changes these factors. It references a range of nineteenth-century texts of which the majority are American dramas from 1860 and onwards, with the inclusion of other materials such as newspaper articles and reviews. Articles and similar materials mostly cover the New York City area, and plays by George M. Baker, Dion Boucicault, S.N. Cook, Anna Cora Mowatt, T.S. Arthur and William Henry Smith are referenced among others. The drunkard narrative present in temperance drama appears in a range of materials quoted in this study, and so these can be considered to contain theatrical elements of their own. Most of the literature which has already been published on this subject have either studied the content of temperance drama itself without a focus on gender, or described the drunkard narrative across culture and society with no major focus on theatre. The aim is subsequently to combine these two elements, demonstrate the problems that drinking causes for nineteenth-century gender dynamics and family structures, and how these are addressed or resolved.

Type of Work: Thesis (Masters by Research > M.Phil.)
Award Type: Masters by Research > M.Phil.
College/Faculty: Colleges (2008 onwards) > College of Arts & Law
School or Department: School of English, Drama and American & Canadian Studies, Department of Drama and Theatre Arts
Funders: None/not applicable
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HN Social history and conditions. Social problems. Social reform
H Social Sciences > HQ The family. Marriage. Woman
P Language and Literature > PN Literature (General) > PN2000 Dramatic representation. The Theater
P Language and Literature > PS American literature


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