GPP Coffee Break – John McCurdy

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Date(s) - 21/01/2022
3:30 pm - 4:30 pm

On January 21, 2022, at 3:30 pm GST (10:30 am EST) a presentation by John McCurdy (Eastern Michigan University) as he outlines the connections between manhood and military service in Georgian Britain and colonial America in a talk titled “Martial Manhood in the Anglo Atlantic.”

McCurdy states, “We know that warfare is critical to constructions of gender, but we have not considered how changes in the military and masculinity coincided. In the eighteenth century, European armies went through unprecedented technological and organizational transformations as small armies of pikemen fighting for aristocrats were replaced by professional soldiers who warred for empire with muskets and cannons. At the same time, manhood was altered by Enlightenment ideals, shifting from a generative identity based on patriarchal hierarchy to a Lockean notion which presumed an equality of manhood regardless of familial status. I want to see how these two intersected. To date, my research has primarily focused on British regiments in the American colonies on the eve of the American Revolution. Specifically, I have unearthed trial transcripts of British officers accused of sexual crimes. In my talk, I will discuss these early findings and how I am using them to think about martial manhood. I am particularly interested advice on how to expand my research using the Georgian Papers as I have not yet been able to travel to the Royal Archives at Windsor Castle.”

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