Lives lived ‘at such a distance’: How distance shaped masculinity and femininity in the British Atlantic, c.1660-1760

Brennan, Harry A.J. (2022) Lives lived ‘at such a distance’: How distance shaped masculinity and femininity in the British Atlantic, c.1660-1760. PhD thesis, University of Glasgow.

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This thesis explores the role distance played in shaping British masculinity and femininity in the early modern British Atlantic world. Focusing on gender as a foundation of individual identity, this research outlines the powerful effects of Atlantic crossings, maritime trade networks, and encounters with new landscapes and nations. It covers a century of colonial expansion across North America and the Caribbean, from the Restoration to the Seven Years’ War. Building on an earlier study of Anglo-Virginian planter William Byrd II (1674-1744), this thesis uses a series of interconnected individuals as case studies. It explores these individuals’ experiences through five key dynamics: credit, seafaring, communication and emotions, settler-Indigenous encounters, and race. This approach builds on prosopography, the ‘serial microhistory’ approach developed by Kristen Block, and Atlantic history more widely. Responding to historiographical questions posed by Susan Amussen, Allyson Poska, and Julie Hardwick, it draws on diverse fields of study. These include geography, maritime history, the spatial turn, studies of emotion, intersectional analysis, Indigenous scholarship, and gender studies. This thesis explores how distance and interaction created ‘Atlantic masculinities’ in Britain and its colonies. Furthermore, it asks if complementary or divergent ‘Atlantic femininities’ can be found in this period. In summary, this research shows how the ‘New World’ produced new identities over a century of British imperial expansion.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Qualification Level: Doctoral
Subjects: D History General and Old World > D History (General)
Colleges/Schools: College of Arts > School of Humanities > History
Supervisor's Name: Mackillop, Dr. Andrew and Paton, Dr. Diana
Date of Award: 2022
Depositing User: Theses Team
Unique ID: glathesis:2022-83256
Copyright: Copyright of this thesis is held by the author.
Date Deposited: 11 Nov 2022 09:10
Last Modified: 11 Nov 2022 09:14
Thesis DOI: 10.5525/gla.thesis.83256

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