Catalogue


Seduced, abandoned, and reborn : visions of youth in bourgeois America, 1780-1850 /
Rodney Hessinger.
imprint
Philadelphia : University of Pennsylvania Press, c2005.
description
255 p.
ISBN
0812238796 (cloth : alk. paper)
format(s)
Book
Holdings
More Details
series title
imprint
Philadelphia : University of Pennsylvania Press, c2005.
isbn
0812238796 (cloth : alk. paper)
catalogue key
5443767
 
Includes bibliographical references and index.
A Look Inside
About the Author
Author Affiliation
Rodney Hessinger teaches history at Hiram College
Full Text Reviews
Appeared in Choice on 2006-05-01:
In the decades following the American Revolution, many Americans worried about the morals of young people in an age when strict patriarchal control was eroding. Hessinger (Hiram College) examines the middle-class authors, educators, and reformers who served as self-proclaimed moral guardians, and traces their efforts to influence and shape young people, particularly those in the urban Northeast. The author surveys a variety of efforts, from writing didactic novels and advice manuals to building reform institutions and reshaping colleges. The book effectively advances two main arguments. First, it highlights the dilemmas facing conservative-minded reformers: in order to convince young people to behave a certain way, they had to interest and persuade their audience, not order them. Whatever the genre, these reformers tended to create works that titillated, scandalized, or entertained an audience in ways that seemed to be at cross-purposes with their ostensible goals. Second, the book argues that these efforts were instrumental in shaping middle-class notions of chastity, domesticity, and piety, while at the same time clarifying differences between classes. ^BSumming Up: Recommended. Collections specializing in 19th-century and cultural history, upper-division undergraduate and above. S. Condon Merrimack College
Reviews
Review Quotes
"Politicians, preachers, and pundits prattle about family values, but this lovely little book engages our actual experience of the family as those self-appointed moralists never manage to do. Rodney Hessinger is a gifted historian who catches compellingly the dilemmas with which those who meant to regulate the young had to deal and the strategies they developed to deal with them.Seduced, Abandoned, and Rebornis the real deal. It will reorient our understanding of family life in the early American republic."--Michael Zuckerman, University of Pennsylvania
"Seduced, Abandoned, and Rebornis an important new study of the cultural history of the early republic; it makes significant contributions to the historical literatures on gender, sexuality, reform, popular culture, and the middle-class in early America. It is built upon a solid base of original archival research, and it offers new perspectives on a wide ranging set of historical questions. Hessinger's book will have a broad appeal for students and scholars across a variety of disciplines."--Bruce Dorsey, author ofReforming Men and Women: Gender in the Antebellum City
"An important contribution to our understanding of antebellum bourgeois culture and the dialectical power plays enacted by its youth and their elders."- Pennsylvania Magazine of History and Biography
" Seduced, Abandoned, and Rebornis an important new study of the cultural history of the early republic; it makes significant contributions to the historical literatures on gender, sexuality, reform, popular culture, and the middle-class in early America. It is built upon a solid base of original archival research, and it offers new perspectives on a wide ranging set of historical questions. Hessinger's book will have a broad appeal for students and scholars across a variety of disciplines."-Bruce Dorsey, author of Reforming Men and Women: Gender in the Antebellum City
"Politicians, preachers, and pundits prattle about family values, but this lovely little book engages our actual experience of the family as those self-appointed moralists never manage to do. Rodney Hessinger is a gifted historian who catches compellingly the dilemmas with which those who meant to regulate the young had to deal and the strategies they developed to deal with them. Seduced, Abandoned, and Rebornis the real deal. It will reorient our understanding of family life in the early American republic."-Michael Zuckerman, University of Pennsylvania
"Offering keen insight derived from a wide range of sources, from eighteenth-century literature to institutional records, Seduced, Abandoned, and Rebornis important reading for scholars of gender, youth, and class in the early republic."- Journal of the Early Republic
"Offering keen insight derived from a wide range of sources, from eighteenth-century literature to institutional records,Seduced, Abandoned, and Rebornis important reading for scholars of gender, youth, and class in the early republic."--Journal of the Early Republic
"An important contribution to our understanding of antebellum bourgeois culture and the dialectical power plays enacted by its youth and their elders."--Pennsylvania Magazine of History and Biography
This item was reviewed in:
Choice, May 2006
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Summaries
Bowker Data Service Summary
Benefiting from new insights in cultural history, this work looks at the way the categories of gender, age, and class took rhetorical shape in the early republic.
Main Description
Seduced, Abandoned, and Rebornexposes the fears expressed by elders about young people in the early American republic. Those authors, educators, and moral reformers who aspired to guide youth into respectable stations perceived new dangers in the decades following independence. Battling a range of seducers in the burgeoning marketplace of early America, from corrupt peers to licentious prostitutes, from pornographic authors to firebrand preachers, these self-proclaimed moral guardians crafted advice and institutions for youth, hoping to guide them safely away from harm and toward success. By penning didactic novels and advice books while building reform institutions and colleges, they sought to lead youth into dutiful behavior. But, thrust into the market themselves, these moral guides were forced to compromise their messages to find a popular audience. Nonetheless, their calls for order did have lasting impact. In urban centers in the Northeast, middle-class Americans became increasingly committed to their notions of chastity, piety, and hard work. Focusing on popular publications and large urban centers, Hessinger draws a portrait of deeply troubled reformers, men and women, who worried incessantly about the vulnerability of youth to the perils of prostitution, promiscuity, misbehavior, and revolt. Benefiting from new insights in cultural history,Seduced, Abandoned, and Rebornlooks at the way the categories of gender, age, and class took rhetorical shape in the early republic. In trying to steer young adults away from danger, these advisors created values that came to define the emerging middle class of urban America.
Main Description
Seduced, Abandoned, and Rebornexposes the fears expressed by elders about young people in the early American republic. Those authors, educators, and moral reformers who aspired to guide youth into respectable stations perceived new dangers in the decades following independence. Battling a range of seducers in the burgeoning marketplace of early America, from corrupt peers to licentious prostitutes, from pornographic authors to firebrand preachers, these self-proclaimed moral guardians crafted advice and institutions for youth, hoping to guide them safely away from harm and toward success. By penning didactic novels and advice books while building reform institutions and colleges, they sought to lead youth into dutiful behavior. But, thrust into the market themselves, these moral guides were forced to compromise their messages to find a popular audience. Nonetheless, their calls for order did have lasting impact. In urban centers in the Northeast, middle-class Americans became increasingly committed to their notions of chastity, piety, and hard work. Focusing on popular publications and large urban centers, Hessinger draws a portrait of deeply troubled reformers, men and women, who worried incessantly about the vulnerability of youth to the perils of prostitution, promiscuity, misbehavior, and revolt. Benefiting from new insights in cultural history, Seduced, Abandoned, and Rebornlooks at the way the categories of gender, age, and class took rhetorical shape in the early republic. In trying to steer young adults away from danger, these advisors created values that came to define the emerging middle class of urban America.
Main Description
Seduced, Abandoned, and Reborn exposes the fears expressed by elders about young people in the early American republic. Those authors, educators, and moral reformers who aspired to guide youth into respectable stations perceived new dangers in the decades following independence. Battling a range of seducers in the burgeoning marketplace of early America, from corrupt peers to licentious prostitutes, from pornographic authors to firebrand preachers, these self-proclaimed moral guardians crafted advice and institutions for youth, hoping to guide them safely away from harm and toward success. By penning didactic novels and advice books while building reform institutions and colleges, they sought to lead youth into dutiful behavior. But, thrust into the market themselves, these moral guides were forced to compromise their messages to find a popular audience. Nonetheless, their calls for order did have lasting impact. In urban centers in the Northeast, middle-class Americans became increasingly committed to their notions of chastity, piety, and hard work.
Table of Contents
Introductionp. 1
"Victims at the Shrine of Libertinism": Gender in the Seduction Tales of the Late Eighteenth Centuryp. 23
Victim of Seduction or Vicious Woman? Conceptions of the Prostitute at the Philadelphia Magdalen Society and Beyondp. 44
"The Most Powerful Instrument of College Discipline": The University of Pennsylvania and the Advent of Meritocracy in the Early Republicp. 69
Harvesting Youth: The Competition for Souls in Early Nineteenth-Century Philadelphia and Beyondp. 96
"The Young Man's Friend": Advice Manuals and the Dangerous Journey to Self-Made Manhoodp. 125
Private Libertines: Emergent Strategies for the Control of Male Youth in Bourgeois Americap. 148
Conclusionp. 177
Notesp. 183
Bibliographyp. 233
Indexp. 249
Acknowledgmentsp. 253
Table of Contents provided by Ingram. All Rights Reserved.

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