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Foul Bodies: Cleanliness in Early America (review)

Foul Bodies: Cleanliness in Early America (review) JOURNAL OF THE EARLY REPUBLIC (Spring 2011) have done well to address what, if any, relevance the British occupation of 1768­70 bore on these subsequent events. Ti m oth y J. Sha nnon is professor of history at Gettysburg College. His most recent book is Iroquois Diplomacy on the Early American Frontier (New York, 2008). He is currently working on a biography of eighteenth-century Indian captive Peter Williamson. Foul Bodies: Cleanliness in Early America. By Kathleen M. Brown. (New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 2009. Pp. 450. Cloth, $45.00.) Reviewed by Ellen Hartigan-O'Connor Kathleen M. Brown's Foul Bodies: Cleanliness in Early America defines a new subject of historical inquiry--the ``civilized body''--and examines its development from the sixteenth to the nineteenth century. A product of Atlantic contact, changing ideas about women, and shifting standards of cleanliness, this new, modern body was both an organic object to be cared for and a vital rhetorical trope used to define racial, class, and political boundaries. Most significantly, it resulted from unending female labor. Through analysis of medical texts, religious treatises, domestic manuals, personal correspondence, household artifacts, and art, Brown presents the history of ``body work,'' those ``cleaning, healing, and caring labors'' (5) http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Journal of the Early Republic University of Pennsylvania Press

Foul Bodies: Cleanliness in Early America (review)

Journal of the Early Republic , Volume 31 (1) – Feb 11, 2011

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Publisher
University of Pennsylvania Press
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Copyright © University of Pennsylvania Press
ISSN
1553-0620
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Abstract

JOURNAL OF THE EARLY REPUBLIC (Spring 2011) have done well to address what, if any, relevance the British occupation of 1768­70 bore on these subsequent events. Ti m oth y J. Sha nnon is professor of history at Gettysburg College. His most recent book is Iroquois Diplomacy on the Early American Frontier (New York, 2008). He is currently working on a biography of eighteenth-century Indian captive Peter Williamson. Foul Bodies: Cleanliness in Early America. By Kathleen M. Brown. (New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 2009. Pp. 450. Cloth, $45.00.) Reviewed by Ellen Hartigan-O'Connor Kathleen M. Brown's Foul Bodies: Cleanliness in Early America defines a new subject of historical inquiry--the ``civilized body''--and examines its development from the sixteenth to the nineteenth century. A product of Atlantic contact, changing ideas about women, and shifting standards of cleanliness, this new, modern body was both an organic object to be cared for and a vital rhetorical trope used to define racial, class, and political boundaries. Most significantly, it resulted from unending female labor. Through analysis of medical texts, religious treatises, domestic manuals, personal correspondence, household artifacts, and art, Brown presents the history of ``body work,'' those ``cleaning, healing, and caring labors'' (5)

Journal

Journal of the Early RepublicUniversity of Pennsylvania Press

Published: Feb 11, 2011

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