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The Overflowing of Friendship (review)

The Overflowing of Friendship (review) REVIEWS The Overflowing of Friendship. By Richard Godbeer (Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 2009. Pp. 254. Cloth: $35.00.) Reviewed by Jennifer Manion The central argument of Richard Godbeer's path-breaking new book is that intimate friendships between men--strengthened by frequent expressions of love and adoration for each other--were not only personally meaningful for individuals but also socially foundational to the creation of the American republic. Those versed in the literature on founding fathers will be taken aback by the suggestion that emotional intimacy rather than political theory may have been just the tie to bind men together through the tumultuous period of our nation's founding. But Godbeer pulls together a diverse array of convincing evidence demonstrating that from the colonial period through the early republic, men openly showered each other with declarations of desire, admiration, love, longing, despair, and affection. Such statements were not made in secret or with shame but rather appeared openly in the private and public writings of influential and socially respectable men. Godbeer argues that such romantic references did not necessarily signify sexual desire, attraction, or intimacies between the men, since a direct correlation between emotional intimacy and sexual desire did not become fixed in http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Journal of the Early Republic University of Pennsylvania Press

The Overflowing of Friendship (review)

Journal of the Early Republic , Volume 30 (2) – Apr 28, 2010

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

REVIEWS The Overflowing of Friendship. By Richard Godbeer (Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 2009. Pp. 254. Cloth: $35.00.) Reviewed by Jennifer Manion The central argument of Richard Godbeer's path-breaking new book is that intimate friendships between men--strengthened by frequent expressions of love and adoration for each other--were not only personally meaningful for individuals but also socially foundational to the creation of the American republic. Those versed in the literature on founding fathers will be taken aback by the suggestion that emotional intimacy rather than political theory may have been just the tie to bind men together through the tumultuous period of our nation's founding. But Godbeer pulls together a diverse array of convincing evidence demonstrating that from the colonial period through the early republic, men openly showered each other with declarations of desire, admiration, love, longing, despair, and affection. Such statements were not made in secret or with shame but rather appeared openly in the private and public writings of influential and socially respectable men. Godbeer argues that such romantic references did not necessarily signify sexual desire, attraction, or intimacies between the men, since a direct correlation between emotional intimacy and sexual desire did not become fixed in

Journal

Journal of the Early RepublicUniversity of Pennsylvania Press

Published: Apr 28, 2010

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