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Publisher Description

The voluminous records of the Pierce and Poor families weave a story that runs from the late eighteenth century until World War I. The extent and qual-ity of their source materials, and their positions as representative middle-class to upper-middle-class New England families, make these subjects of Yankee Family particularly well suited for analyzing processes of continuity and change. McGovern reviews the life-styles of the Pierce and,Poor families both on the frontier and in the Boston area, and focuses on the cross-generational changes in these styles.

The study begins with John Pierce at Harvard in the 1790s and follows through to the first decade of the twen-tieth century. The author shows how the "Yankee" mentality, an outgrowth of New England Puritanism, contributed to the family's rise to success, but con-cludes that by the early twentieth cen-tury the Yankee life-style was ending, a victim of social and economic changes in American society that were rendering it irrelevant.

Until recently historical scholarship on the American family has been static. Apart from long-standing predilections of historians for political history, there were also theoretical and meth-odological problems deterring schol-arship on the American family. But McGovern's approach holds great promise; it is more sensitive than quan-tification studies to the impact of change on a wider range of human expe-riences because it is inevitably more personal. While this type of family his-tory rewards students of social change, it also affords important insights on con-tinuity. It reveals the existence of a family style which adapts to change with a special corpus of family wisdom, al-ways finding a way to exercise its "known" amidst constant flux thus mitigating some of the effects of change.

GENRE
History
RELEASED
2017
September 29
LANGUAGE
EN
English
LENGTH
191
Pages
PUBLISHER
Taylor and Francis
SELLER
Taylor & Francis Group
SIZE
5.8
MB

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