A Cultural History of Childhood and Family in the Age of Enlightenment 9781350049635, 9781847887979, 9781472554703

The collection of ideas, values, and beliefs known as the Enlightenment fundamentally altered the ways in which the fami

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illustrations

CHAPTER 1 Figure 1.1: A Family Group, attributed to Michiel Nouts.

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Figure 1.2: Sir William Pepperrell and his Family, John Singleton Copley. 23 Figure 1.3: Paternal Love, Etienne Aubry.

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CHAPTER 3 Figure 3.1: William Hogarth, The Fellow Apprentices at their Looms.

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Figure 3.2: Franklin’s Youthful, Industrious Habits.

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Figure 3.3: A Little Pretty Pocket-Book, title page.

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Figure 3.4: A Little Pretty Pocket-Book.

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CHAPTER 4 Figure 4.1: Gregory King’s family budget.

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Figure 4.2: William Hogarth, “The distressed poet.”

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Figure 4.3: Portrait of Abel Tasman, His Wife and Daughter, attributed to Jacob Gerritsz Cuyp.

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ILLUSTRATIONS

Figure 4.4: Interior with Ladies by a Linen Cupboard by Pieter de Hooch (1663).

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Figure 4.5: The domestic space as an area of production, consumption and meaning.

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Figure 4.6: Cobbler’s Hall (ca. 1800).

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Figure 4.7: A Family of Three at Tea, attributed to Richard Collins.

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Figure 4.8: Work box (ca. 1790–1800).

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CHAPTER 5 Figure 5.1: Page from The Young Clerks Assistant, or Penmanship Made Easy, Instructive and Entertaining.

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Figure 5.2: Game of draughts from An Introduction to the Game of Draughts, Containing Fifty Select Games . . .

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Figure 5.3: Jean-Siméon Chardin’s The Young Schoolmistress (ca. 1735–1736)

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Figure 5.4: Page from Abrégé de l’art des accouchements [Summary of the art of childbirth] (1773).

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CHAPTER 6 Figure 6.1: Dégrés des Ages [“The Ages of Man”].

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Figure 6.2: The Prodigal Son Feasted on His Return (1794).

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Figure 6.3: John and Betty.

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Figure 6.4: Thomas Rowlandson, The English Dance of Death.

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Figure 6.5: Key to the Coke monuments, St. Mary Church, Tittleshall, Norfolk.

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CHAPTER 7 Figure 7.1: Reading of will, anonymous engraving.

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Figure 7.2: “The Sailor’s Progress,” engraving by G. Cruickshank (1818).

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ILLUSTRATIONS

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Figure 7.3: Gypsy family, engraving by Franco Pedro.

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Figure 7.4: Peasant family in Italian farm house, engraving by F. Bartolozzi.

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Figure 7.5: Church and tavern, engraving by T. Cook after W. Hogarth (1797).

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CHAPTER 8 Figure 8.1: William Hogarth, Beer Street.

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Figure 8.2: William Hogarth, Gin Lane.

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Figure 8.3: Jean-Baptiste Greuze, The Beloved Mother.

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CHAPTER 9 Figure 9.1: Nicolas Andry de Boisrgard, nurse and baby.

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Figure 9.2: Bernhard Christoph Faust, woodcut of a child modeling proper clothing.

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Figure 9.3: Leg pieces for the treatment of rickets.

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CHAPTER 10 Figure 10.1: Louis-Armand de Lom d’Arce, New Voyages to North-America (1703).

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Figure 10.2: Mexican casta painting attributed to José de Alcíbar (ca. 1750).

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Figures 10.3–10.4: Casta paintings by José Joaquín Magón (ca. 1770).

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Figure 10.5: William Redmore Bigg, A Lady and Her Children Relieving a Cottager (1781).

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general editors’ preface

The literature on the histories of children and the family has reached a critical mass. The proliferation of encyclopedia, conferences, and professional associations reflects the vitality of these closely related but independent fields. The two subjects are naturally linked; Western conceptions of the family have virtually always included children, and children and youth are irrevocably shaped by their time growing up in families. A Cultural History of Childhood and Family aims to bring order to these sometimes disparate histories and historiographical traditions with original material written especially for these volumes. More than six dozen editors and authors from five continents and thirteen countries were commissioned to take a comprehensive look at the subject from a Western perspective with more than casual glances at the world beyond. Based on deep readings of the secondary literature and on representative primary sources, each of the chapters is an original work of synthesis and interpretation. It is our hope that imposing a standard table of contents on a project covering literally thousands of years and hundreds of ethnicities, religious faiths, and communities will help us find otherwise hidden patterns and rich contrasts in the experiences of children and families and in humankind’s attitudes about them. There is inevitably a bit of overlap; issues related to children and the family do not form and develop according to convenient beginning and ending dates. But there is also a variety of viewpoints, even on similar topics. Indeed, as general editors we embrace the divergence of interpretations, emphases, and even writing and organizational styles that emerge from these five dozen chapters. Some of the diversity follows naturally from the vastly different conditions

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facing children and their families in different eras, while in other cases it is inspired by the authors’ expertise and personal approaches to the field. There have always been many childhoods and many families in the West. The purpose of these volumes is not only to look at the constructions of childhood and the family, particularly as they reflect evolving ethnic, gender, religious, national, and class assumptions, but also the lived experiences of children and of the families in which they spend so much of their lives. The symbiotic relationship between child and parent, between brother and sister, and between the individual and the family to which he or she belongs is reflected in the intertwined historical literature on children and families. By studying both, we can learn more about each. Elizabeth Foyster Clare College, University of Cambridge James Marten Marquette University

Introduction elizabeth foyster and james marten

The eighteenth century has long been identified as a period of change in family life. But by attempting to find evidence of change in terms of levels of affection within families, historians have become blind to other possibilities. The assumptions that the eighteenth century saw a new identification of childhood as a distinct period of life, that children were cherished and valued as never before, and that marriages were subsequently happier and more loving because kin and lineage concerns played less of a part in courtship and spousal choice have been shown to be false.1 Instead, relationships between parents and children, and husbands and wives, were infinitely variable, and the full spectrum of family relationships from affectionate, close, and intimate to violent, brutal, and distant could be found in the eighteenth century, as in any period. Rather than the emotional content, it was the cultural context in which family life was conducted that marked the eighteenth century as different from the preceding centuries. The collection of ideas, values, and beliefs known as the Enlightenment fundamentally altered the ways in which the family was understood. Enlightenment thought challenged people to rethink traditional family roles. It made what had long been taken for granted—such as the innate nature of children—open to debate, but it also reinforced long-held notions of difference concerning gender and race through the application of new ideas and theories. Moreover, much of the terminology and many of the models for middle-class family life and protected childhood originated in the eighteenth century. Certain constructions of family and childhood became powerful

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metaphors and symbols as well as goals. Although these archetypal family structures and forms of childhood perhaps never came to represent the actual experience of the majority of Western families, they nevertheless became standards against which parents, children, commentators, policy makers, and many others measured the success or failure of families. The histories of childhood and the family rarely provide clear transitions or linear story lines. Perhaps more than in other fields of study, imposing a span of years creates an artificial chronology and a false sense of the tidiness of this particular past. Many of the forces affecting the family and children examined in this volume actually began long before 1650 and certainly continued into the nineteenth century. The histories of childhood and the family are less a matter of passing from one clearly articulated phase to the next and more a process of adding layers of experience and understanding to traditional ways of forming families and rearing children. As a result, this volume, like the others in the series, captures the lives and social constructions of families in a series of snapshots that would be familiar, if changed in important ways, to people living in earlier or later eras. For instance, in 1650 the effects of the Renaissance still echoed through the cultures of Western Europe. The religious struggles of the previous era were still playing out in Europe and America. Europeans had been exploring and colonizing the New World for well over a century, but, especially in British and French North America, the process of empire building had really just begun. Order can be brought to this material by focusing on the body of ideas that became known as the Enlightenment, which historians have assigned almost entirely to the period between 1650 and 1800. Although the chapters, of course, provide deep descriptions of the facts and forms of family and child life during this period, the authors seek to place this information in the context of the intellectual and cultural movement that would deeply affect the ways westerners thought about and, to a lesser extent, acted in virtually every facet of their lives. The Enlightenment provided the potential for both change and continuity in family life. Indeed, concepts of childhood and the family in the eighteenth century embodied all that the Enlightenment has come to represent. The family home, after all, was the site where reason and knowledge were first nurtured, where the individual developed, and where relationships were formed and tested. The family’s place in a world that was changing politically, socially, and economically filled the pages of eighteenth-century periodicals and newspapers, animated discussions at public lectures and debates, and inspired conversation in salons and in the coffeehouses of new and expanding urban centers. These

INTRODUCTION

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formal and informal institutions in the emerging public sphere were actively engaged in defining, questioning, and exchanging ideas about the family. Increased letter and diary writing, resulting from enlightenment interest in developing individual self-awareness, also frequently focused on familial concerns. Yet historians’ eager consideration of gender roles and, in particular, the place of women, has meant that the family has been largely neglected by scholars of the Enlightenment. Equally, although historians of childhood have recognized the importance of key enlightenment thinkers, most notably John Locke and Jean-Jacques Rousseau, there has been little consideration of the impact of this cultural movement upon the family as a whole. Indeed, compared to the volume of work conducted on the seventeenth- and nineteenth-century family, the eighteenth remains the neglected century for historians of the Western family.2 Children and families were part of a number of major cultural enterprises during this period, from educational reform to colonization and from religious diversification to the first hints of the Industrial Revolution; this volume aims to fill an important gap in our historical knowledge.

IDEAS ABOUT CHILDREN AND FAMILIES, 1650–1800 What was the impact of the Enlightenment upon childhood and family life? An obvious starting point would be to consider the works of Locke and Rousseau. Locke’s Essay Concerning Human Understanding (1690), his Some Thoughts Concerning Education (1693), and Rousseau’s Émile (1762) revolutionized thinking about children and their place in families. Their work was translated and had a readership all across the Western world, and their ideas were popularized in novels by Samuel Richardson, Daniel Defoe, and Henry Fielding. For Locke and Rousseau, the primary goal of parenting was to instill love, not just discipline, and the focus of child rearing shifted from breaking the will of a child via physical means to molding his or her mind. The enlightenment recognition that every child was an individual was a key turning point because it meant that childhood began to be seen as a special period in life when children had particular needs. As Hugh Cunningham put it, “Some people began to see childhood not as a preparation for something else, whether adulthood or heaven, but as a stage of life to be valued in its own right.”3 Children were not miniature adults, and they were naturally inclined to good, not evil. Rousseau’s confidence in children’s innate goodness led him to believe that childhood should be a period when children learned by doing rather than being told how to behave. The forces of nature, he thought, should shape children more than the influence of adults. According to Rousseau, it was through the

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INTRODUCTION

freedom to play that children would develop. For most parents, this was a license to family mayhem, and Locke’s formula for bringing children up seemed far more attractive. In contrast to Rousseau, Locke believed a child’s time should be structured and adult directed. For Locke, a child’s mind was a tabula rasa, or “blank slate,” and it was the parent’s duty to help the child learn to submit his or her will to reason. Hence it was during the so-called age of reason that childhood was identified as the stage of life when this vital characteristic of civilized man should be acquired. The responsibility on parents was a heavy one; if children behaved badly, blame was directed to parental failure, not children’s wicked nature. In practice, it was mothers who faced the most criticism when things went wrong. Science and medicine during the Enlightenment marked women as utterly different from, not just inferior versions of, men. Their minds and bodies were naturally suited not only to childbearing but also to child rearing. Motherhood in this period became a status to achieve, a full-time occupation, and an ideal to which to aspire. Over the long-term, such ideas about women’s roles in family life would be crucial to notions of middle-class identity and the domestic ideal of gender relations conducted within separate spheres.4 During the eighteenth century, these ideas meant that breast-feeding by mothers was increasingly seen as important; there was a decline of wet-nursing (except, notably, in France), a reaction against swaddling (the physical freedom of the child could be promoted if mothers were to pay more attention to their safety), a determination to lower rates of maternal and infant mortality, and male intervention in midwifery. Parenthood, particularly motherhood from conception onward, came under medical and scientific scrutiny. The impact of these new ways of thinking about the parent-child relationship was two-way. The role of parents in educating their children grew more important during the Enlightenment, but the rewards of being a parent also emerged in a new light. Children came to be viewed as a “source of pleasure and diversion.”5 As many of the paintings in this volume illustrate, relationships with children brought opportunities for intimacy and love, and children were cherished and valued by their parents. Instead of stressing only what adults should teach children, enlightenment writers began to consider what children could offer adults. It is “the child who teaches man to know himself,” wrote Alphonse Leroy, French physician and professor of medicine, in 1803.6 This reformulation of childhood raised children to a new and important place in family life. A wide range of cultural forms, from novels to paintings to poetry, celebrated the sheer happiness that having a child and becoming a family could bring.

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The works of Locke and Rousseau were also notable because neither were clergymen. Indeed, Rousseau was the figurehead of a new secular religion of sensibility that sparked a shift from the belief that children were sinful creatures to one in which children were viewed far more positively, even as angels who could offer redemptive opportunities for their parents. Rousseau’s ideas about children’s innocence were further developed by the romantics at the end of the century. Yet these enlightenment ideas did not replace older, religiously inspired ideas about childhood. For example, Evangelicals in England at the end of the eighteenth century, such as Hannah More, continued to claim children were born with original sin.7 However, contrary to the assumptions of early historians, the Enlightenment did not bring a rise of modern paganism. That religion continued to have social relevance can be seen in religion’s place in many of the rituals of family life as well as the deeply held beliefs of individuals. Indeed, the inculcation of religious beliefs remained a central part of the schooling of young children. In the absence of families, charitable institutions in both Catholic and Protestant states assumed responsibility for the welfare and education of orphans. When family life broke down, religious organizations were there to pick up the pieces as seen in the founding of refuges for battered wives and asylums for single mothers and prostitutes. For some minority religious groups, such as the Jews, religion could provide families with a vital source of community support and a sense of belonging as well as sometimes unwelcome surveillance. One of the most radical religious and cultural movements in the West during this time was Puritanism, which also provided fairly coherent approaches to family structure and child rearing that would have both immediate and long-term effects. In 1970, the American historian John Demos famously referred to the Puritan family as “a little commonwealth,” and although that metaphor has been modified over the years, no one has challenged the idea that Puritans were among the first groups in the West to place children at the center of their conceptions of family and community. In America, the Puritans had by 1650 established the Plymouth, Massachusetts Bay, Rhode Island, and Connecticut colonies. Although internal tensions and demographic changes eventually led to the failure of their attempt to establish a “city on a hill” (although Americans have ever since adapted that phrase to various national projects and values), one of their lasting legacies was a focus on the family and its role in raising children. New England villages were models of faith- and family-based communities, and the centrality of Puritan thinking about family structure and children’s salvation led them to emphasize education, order, mutual responsibility, and gender relations in ways that would last many generations after Puritanism’s predominance in New England faded.

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One example of the Puritan emphasis on children is the mental gymnastics they went through to fit their theological constructs within their devotion to children. As Calvinists, Puritans believed in infant depravity and damnation, although over the generations they softened their stance and practices to ease the process of baptism and church membership, which they undertook at least partly to ease the terror of believing their children might be doomed. This process would not be complete until at least the Second Great Awakening in the first third of the nineteenth century, but it does soften the severe reputation of the Puritans.8 The eighteenth century also saw the politicization of ideas about the family, which came to play an important part in emerging concepts of nationalism. Families represented the economic and political strength of nations. A 1697 census indicating the population of France was static or even decreasing marked the beginning of an enduring anxiety in France about population. It inspired a wide range of state initiatives to encourage women to have children and more of them. Elsewhere, a recognition that the poor tended to have the largest numbers of children contributed to state support for foundling and lying-in hospitals as well as orphanages. The notion that children were the future citizens of states shaped school curricula, particularly in post-revolutionary France and America, where educators emphasized civic and patriotic values. Mothers were also believed to be crucial in teaching their children how to be good citizens. For European nations expanding their overseas colonies, motherhood was thought to be vital for imperial power. Enlightenment thinkers believed investing in children recognized the importance of planning for a nation’s future. John Locke’s thoughts on education and child rearing have rightly been highlighted by historians; they directly influenced constructions of childhood and the family during the Enlightenment and beyond. But his philosophy of natural rights, which helped inspire American colonies to revolt against Britain and provided one of the intellectual bases for the development of the United States government, also had an indirect impact on family and children. The American Revolution unleashed ideas about education and citizenship that would have a huge effect on childhood in the nineteenth century and beyond as Americans came to believe that a functioning democracy required an engaged, literate populace. In addition, the destruction of the patriarchal bond between Britain and the United States helped spark the decline of patriarchal authority in the family, a precondition to the development of the affectionate nuclear family that would come to dominate middle-class ideals.9

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FAMILY LIVES, 1650–1800 A book with Enlightenment in its title might be thought to explore only ideas about childhood and the family. But the contributors to this volume have each been careful to consider the cultural history of children and the family by providing glimpses into the lived experiences of families. On occasion, this approach highlights significant differences between ideals and realities. One striking observation is the harsh reality of everyday life for most families in which the struggle to overcome illness and delay death began the moment life began. Demographic patterns varied considerably across the Western world, but the rates of infant mortality are shocking to modern eyes. In England, only three out of four children reached the age of ten in the eighteenth century, but this was better than in France, where half of children died before this age. Within nations, there could be marked regional differences: families in southern Germany, for example, experienced higher rates of infant mortality than those in the north. Life expectancy remained much shorter for families living in the southern than the northern American colonies during the eighteenth century. Being orphaned at an early age must also have been a common experience for children in this period. Whereas plague was eradicated in Europe after 1721, wars periodically dealt a devastating blow to families. The War of Spanish Succession (1701–1713), for example, cost the lives of six hundred thousand French soldiers. About twenty-five thousand American soldiers died during the American Revolution from combat or disease. Yet in Europe, particularly in the second half of the eighteenth century, populations increased. In England, this was due to increased fertility rather than declining mortality. Women had, on average, 7.5 children between 1725 and 1800 compared to 6.78 children between 1650 and 1674. In Sweden, by contrast, increased population during the same period was due to declining rates of mortality.10 Children and their physical and mental well-being may have received increased attention during the Enlightenment, but medicine offered few child-specific remedies when illness struck. The most notable exception, much celebrated at the time as a scientific breakthrough, was the smallpox inoculation and vaccination. That innovation, alongside a shift in attitudes that led to more mothers breast-feeding their babies, contributed most to declining mortality rates in the eighteenth century. Migration could also affect population levels, sometimes dramatically. It has been estimated that during the eighteenth century some 5.5 million Africans were taken to America as slaves.11 The rapid growth of slavery affected millions of children between the sixteenth and nineteenth centuries. Despite

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daunting obstacles to forming anything remotely like a normal family, as soon as gender ratios began to stabilize in the late seventeenth century, slave men and women formed families, often encouraged by masters who sought the stability such relationships would provide as well as the new slaves a successful marriage would produce. Although as many as forty percent of slaves living in parts of Maryland lived outside of any family structure at all, slaves nevertheless constantly sought some sort of family connection. Colonial and, later, state slave codes did not recognize slave marriages, although masters frequently allowed slaves to celebrate their unions with a formal ceremony. Many couples lived on separate farms and plantations in “away” marriages. Despite the instability of slave families, which could be broken up by sale or death at any time, children were raised by family members—sometimes by both parents but more often by a parent and an extended family of aunts, uncles, cousins, and neighbors who, following African tradition, took on familial responsibilities in the absence of blood relatives. Although we know much more about slave families in the better-documented nineteenth century, it is clear that slave parents fought to influence their children, protect them as long as possible from exploitation by white masters, and inculcate in them a sense of self and cultural identity independent of their status as slaves. Slave children, it is also clear, did enjoy a short childhood—limited, of course, by their degraded living conditions, unstable family structure, and absolute dependence on white owners—in which play and work were often integrated. By age twelve, most slave children were considered “full hands.”12 White children who emigrated with their families or were born in American frontier communities paid the price of expansion. Throughout the period, the settlement and development of the New World showed the challenge of maintaining families as migrants struggled to build farms and towns, endured new diseases and starving times, and encountered and determined to remove native tribes. Characteristically, Europeans who encountered indigenous peoples often remarked on their seemingly chaotic and undisciplined family structure and child-rearing practices, which actually reflected different educational needs and family dynamics. But contact with Europeans did throw native communities into a kind of chaos as warfare and disease devastated communities and families, trade relationships altered traditional economic practices, and Christianization influenced multiple changes in natives’ beliefs, family structure, and relationships with Europeans. But the lives of child pioneers were also plagued by insecurity and were vulnerable to disruption. During the first two generations of settlement in Virginia and Maryland, for instance, mortality rates sometimes reached thirty percent,

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which meant that huge numbers of children failed to reach adulthood, while many more lived at least part of their childhood with only one or neither of their parents. The children of the Pilgrims who moved from England to the Netherlands in the 1610s and to Plymouth in 1619 suffered even more than their parents; few survived the first winter.13 Whether to start new lives as pioneers, find work, escape from religious or political persecution, or as part of the life cycle when leaving the parental home or getting married, movement was a common feature of family life in this period. The migration of families, alongside the expansion of print media, meant enlightenment ideas about the family could be exchanged and spread over a much wider geographical area than ever before. Family relationships and businesses were conducted across continents as many European states engaged in colonial expansion and international trading links developed. Attempts to impose Western ideas of family life on indigenous peoples continued in the eighteenth century as seen in the Jesuit communities of South America. At the same time, travel literature that described encounters with native peoples challenged westerners to define and defend their values and beliefs about the family. The increasing numbers of people who could read and, in this period, write also meant ideas could be communicated and exchanged with greater ease. The reading revolution of the eighteenth century made reading a popular leisure activity for all family members. Publishers like John Newbery, Elizabeth Newbery, and John Marshall in England marketed books specifically for children, many of which were also reprinted in America. What the historian J. H. Plumb described as a “new world for eighteenth-century children” in England was seen across the West as toys, clothes, furniture, and books were produced for children. Children themselves entered the marketplace for the first time as consumers. The increased affluence of many families, and the availability of new household goods (including furniture, soft furnishings, cooking utensils, clocks, and mirrors), meant the material lives of families were transformed. Families could express affection and emotion through material goods and invest in comforts for the family home.14 However, this volume also reveals that enlightenment ideas were not limitless in their extent or reach. Chapters in this book highlight that if and when enlightenment ideas brought about change, it did not occur in any uniform pattern. New institutions of the Enlightenment, such as coffee houses, debating societies, lending libraries, pleasure gardens, assembly rooms, art exhibitions, and opera and theater performances, were available only to urban residents with a certain degree of leisure and affluence. But most Europeans and Americans still lived in the country at end of the eighteenth century. As a result, the

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culture of the bourgeois public sphere was not accessible to the majority of families during this time. Furthermore, giving a child a school-based education, especially beyond the primary level, and enabling women to be stay-at-home, full-time mothers, required wealth. For most families, home remained a place of work as well as consumption. Far from experiencing childhood as a time of play, as Rousseau had imagined, many children worked long hours engaged in hard, physical labor and mundane, repetitive activities. In contrast to the enlightenment ideal that childhood should be valued in its own right, educators, state officials, employers, and many parents found it difficult not to regard childhood as a stage to prepare individuals for adult life. As a result, playtime could be viewed suspiciously and instead regarded negatively as idle time. Class, gender, and age affected the nature of work for different family members, as always, but the commercialization of agriculture, and the growth of domestic or protoindustries, produced new economic opportunities and challenges for families. Household budgets and priorities could be reassessed and realigned.15 The economic well-being of working families at this time depended upon the contributions of all family members and for most this meant the labor of children and women. In addition, while the Enlightenment saw the development of the idea that there was an intermediary phase between childhood and adulthood, it was viewed as a time that needed to be structured and ordered. Agricultural, indentured, and domestic service, as well as apprenticeship, provided vocational training for future life and the means to control the lives of many eighteenth-century teenagers. Perhaps, then, affording an enlightenment family lifestyle was only a middle-class, white luxury. Locke, after all, was writing for a gentleman’s son, and his “educational programme was a self-consciously snobbish one.”16 Even middle-class and elite women, for whom motherhood had become an occupation, could find their roles restricted because of dominant ideas about feminine nature. In many cultures, once children reached the age of seven (when reason was thought to develop), mothers lost their place as the primary caregivers. This was particularly true in the case of mothers and sons. Fears that spending too much time with mothers would lead to effeminacy meant that boys would be separated from maternal influence, usually to be replaced by male tutors. While men continued to predominate as the authors of advice literature about the upbringing of children, their own role as parents, beyond being heads of households, remained underdeveloped. This may explain why historians have yet to explore seriously the role of fathers during the Enlightenment.

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Any increased enlightenment emphasis upon the value of companionate marriage did not imply equal relations between men and women. Marriage remained a patriarchal institution with profound inequalities for women as seen in the laws governing property and divorce in many Western states. Although patriarchy continued to be redefined, male authority remained in place. For some eighteenth-century women, no doubt, romantic love remained a fictional ideal—to be read about in novels but not directly experienced. Women were conceptualized as less capable of reason and governed by their reproductive bodies. Secondary and university education remained male preserves, and when women were educated it was because it was believed it would make them better mothers rather than because education would be an enriching experience for women themselves. Of course, the Enlightenment saw the publication of feminist writings, most notably by Mary Wollstonecraft. But it is clear that for most contemporaries, although enlightenment polemic championed the rights of the individual, this did not mean all individuals had rights. Ironically, the same philosophy of natural rights that inspired Americans to form the first independent republic in Western history—and to shape, largely for the good, the lives of free children throughout the United States—also helped cement the contours of slavery in the new republic. Although the New England states, which had never relied heavily on slave labor, abolished slavery as part of their revolution against Great Britain, and although states like New York, Pennsylvania, and New Jersey, with far larger slave populations, would begin gradual emancipation programs in the aftermath of the Revolution, slavery emerged in the 1790s and early 1800s stronger than ever in the Chesapeake region and points south, including the Caribbean (except for Saint-Domingue, where slaves successfully rose up against their French masters). This was partly due, of course, to the chronic shortage of labor in the slave states and to the invention of the cotton gin, which led to a stunning expansion of the cotton economy in the southern and southwestern regions of the country. But the republican fervor that led to America’s separation from Britain also led Americans to seek broad and lasting definitions of liberty and freedom. In the slave states, a person’s race (and gender, of course) determined one’s status as free or not free, as a citizen or a noncitizen. Despite extraordinary differences in wealth and power, all white men were equal in this system. As a result, although no more than a quarter of whites actually owned slaves in the United States even during the peak of slave ownership in the nineteenth century, most white residents of slave states were committed to the institution because it guaranteed at least theoretical equality for free men. In this way, even as the Enlightenment set into motion processes and established

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assumptions about children and childhood that would develop into modern ideas about education and child rearing, it also helped doom to short, brutal lives in captivity countless African American children in the United States.

CONCLUSION The Enlightenment introduced novel ideas about the family and childhood. Philosophical, scientific, and medical thinking during the Enlightenment took a more positive view of human nature and viewed relationships with children, and childhood itself, as vital to the development of individuals and even humankind. Because of the information revolution during this period, Western ideas about the family were circulated across the world, revealing the potential of the Enlightenment to mark the first steps toward globalization.17 But the Enlightenment was not a cohesive movement with a unified message or ideal for family life. Hence, the chapters in this volume show that family experiences continued to be varied and shaped by class, gender, location, religion, and race. It is clear that enlightenment thinking about children and families brought costs as well as benefits for individuals. This period was not the first of a series of progressive steps toward some modern ideal of family life as a number of early historians of the family believed. The Enlightenment fostered the politics of exclusion through the assumption of white superiority. It could highlight the differences between the privileged and the poor within white populations, and it could restrict the opportunities for girls and women. It also held the potential to marginalize other groups. If childhood was increasingly valued, and the Western world was becoming a more “child-orientated society,” then where did this leave childless couples?18 With the enlightenment stress on rationality and its increasingly positive view of youth, the elderly—with their fragile minds and bodies—must have found themselves in an unenviable position. Despite recent work on old age in the eighteenth century, the impact of enlightenment thought upon ideas about the end of the life cycle, as well as its beginning, remains a topic deserving of more historical investigation.19 Nevertheless, contributors to this volume demonstrate that family life, and all it represented, was hugely important for eighteenth-century contemporaries. The family loomed so large in their cultural mind-set that they used metaphors of childhood and parenthood in political debate, most notably during the American and French revolutions. The eighteenth century was a period of rapid, often deeply unsettling change. Family life could be disrupted, abruptly ended, and uprooted because of war, urbanization, migration, and emigration.

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But time and again, individuals returned to family life to find solace and some stability in this changing world. Family life-cycle rituals continued to be practiced. People without families—orphans, abandoned children, slave children, unmarried mothers, battered wives, prostitutes, and poor widows—found families in orphanages, foundling hospitals, foster parents, asylums, and religious and charitable foundations because life outside the family structure was unimaginable. The individualistic ideal fostered by the Enlightenment could not consider an individual independent from family ties.

CHAPTER ONE

Family Relationships joanne bailey

The age of enlightenment encompassed both long-standing continuities and ideological change in family relationships in Western society. Continuity is evident in several areas of familial interaction, although expectations and experiences differed according to economic circumstances and levels of wealth and literacy. In preindustrial economies, working spousal partnerships prevailed across the period, with expectations of mutuality, shared labor, and the pooling of resources. Consistent, too, was the household-family’s role in socializing children, transmitting social and cultural values, and forming gender, though this again varied according to socioeconomic specificities. Throughout, there was a broad consensus that love was the foundation of successful marriages and parent-child relationships. For all this, cultural change was marked, due in no small part to the new ways of thinking embodied in the Enlightenment. This was no unified intellectual program since there were variations in chronology and form and according to nation, region, and confession; nonetheless, enlightenments across Europe posed questions that prompted the reimaginings of family ties. From the late seventeenth century, new systems of rearing and educating children redefined aspects of the parent-child relationship. Moral philosophy located a virtuous, benevolent society in the natural affections and human sympathy, and it elevated the family as a primary location for its development. The concept of government as a contractual relationship between ruler and ruled encouraged a rethinking of all patriarchal relationships. These developments had two broad

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repercussions for family relationships. First, as seen in visual and print culture, there was an increased emphasis upon openly demonstrative affection between husband and wife and parent and child, with a celebration of emotional over instrumental bonds. Second, patriarchy (defined here as men’s authority over household and family) was in transition from an overt, authoritarian form to a covert version that brought out companionship and tenderness. The latter did not, however, diminish male authority. These shifts in the representations of family relationships do not indicate transformations in behavior or the depth of attachment from distant to intimate. Indeed, there is often disjunction between prescriptive ideals of family life and reality, and studies have revealed fundamental continuities in emotional ties between family members over time. Yet there was an undeniable link between cultural fashions and individual and collective conduct. This was a change in emotional style, not substance, but one that influenced the way people chose to define their own identities to judge themselves and others. Nor do these developments illustrate a shift from traditional to modern family relationships, with a rise of enlightenment individualism leading families to favor the individual needs and desires of family members over collective family concerns. In fact, new emphases in imagining family relationships coexisted with pre-existing models. For example, elite families in the later eighteenth century remained concerned about ancestry and primogeniture and the transmission of property and status while simultaneously adopting newer fashions for sentimental, even swooning, affection. Finally, though it disrupts a tidy account of family relationships over the century and a half, there is no escaping the infinite variety of experience due to variations in economic, demographic, and cultural conditions of Western society and differences of wealth, status, gender, and age therein. This chapter first explores the material features influencing family relationships by examining household structure, family form, and the marital economy. Next, it turns to the emotional life of families, considering changing ideals about marital and parent-child relationships in their cultural context. Finally, it shows how the remarkable political upheavals of the last quarter of the eighteenth century interacted with the ideals of family relationships.

THE MATERIAL LIFE OF FAMILY RELATIONSHIPS Household structure, marriage patterns, and spatial conceptualizations of the family offer only partial insights into family relationships. The European family form was heterogeneous, with household structure and marriage habits

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governed by specific socioeconomic, institutional, administrative, and legal conditions rather than geography or national character. Consequently, it is not possible to relate different typologies of household to general patterns of emotion and authority.1 Inferring the nature of family relationships from household structure is problematic for other reasons. Demographic evidence that a simple household form prevailed in a region or country does not mean it was inhabited only by parents and children. Naomi Tadmor coined the term “household-family” to illustrate how middling-sort English individuals understood family as dependent upon coresidence and deference to a head of household rather than ties of blood or marriage—a meaning that included servants and apprentices. Jean-Simeon Chardin’s renderings of peaceful mid-eighteenth-century French middle-class domestic scenes typify this conceptualization, peopled as they are by servants quietly undertaking household tasks. David Sabean’s work on peasant families in Neckarhausen, in southern Germany, reveals similarly complex meanings of family. Amoeba-like households varied over their own life course, expanding or reducing as children were born, died, grew up, and left; as relatives came to reside temporarily; and as widowed grandparents joined for the last years of their lives. Death’s scythe reconfigured families and households, most obviously when a spouse’s death was followed by remarriage creating, in modern sociological terms, a blended family, which might include a stepparent, children from one or both previous unions, and potentially the coresidence of step- and half-siblings. As Sylvie Perrier’s study of ancien régime northern France reveals, the blended family was transitory. It split up when one of the remarried spouses died since offspring tended to live thereafter with the guardian of their wealth, who could be a member of their dead biological parent’s family or their surviving parent. Inherently mutable and unstable, family relationships were always in flux and likely to experience both conflict and harmony between spouses, parents and offspring, siblings, and paid household members. Similarly, although coresidence of the wider family was temporary or infrequent, kinship relations remained vital. Aristocratic and genteel families relied upon kin networks to further their business, political, and familial interests as did middling or bourgeois families in financing and sustaining commercial and business ventures. Single men and women, for example, offered vital financial, professional, practical, and emotional support to their family members, whether as sisters and brothers or aunts and uncles, even if not permanently coresident with them. Nor did laboring family kin ties disintegrate under high mobility due to migration, urbanization, changing employment opportunities,

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nascent industrialization, and expansion in varieties of welfare support. If there were fewer kin members in one’s locality, the support of extended family could be crucial in facilitating family members’ navigation of new economic opportunities. There is some evidence that the age of enlightenment witnessed a privatization of family relationships. Families in the sixteenth and early seventeenth centuries were arguably more public thanks to their economic functions and therefore subject to scrutiny from community and authority. Eighteenthcentury elite families, however, rebuilt their homes to enable privacy and uncoupled productivity from domestic life, just as urbanization cast anonymity across family life in lower social ranks. Much of Western Europe also shared a so-called cult of domesticity that emerged from the later eighteenth century—though it took until the nineteenth century to reach its zenith—in which the family was imagined as an enclosed world separated from that of work. This has been seen as hardening separate gendered spheres by circumscribing women’s socioeconomic activities. Some historians even suggest it drove wife beating behind closed doors in the eighteenth century: not wanting to disrupt a harmonious family idyll left wives to the mercy of their husbands. Yet it is a mistake to assume that the quality and experience of family relationships can be crudely mapped onto gendered space and activities. Labeling women’s activities in the domestic sphere as private but men’s activities outside the home as public is inadequate. Throughout Western Europe and North America, wives’ lives extended beyond the boundaries of their homes to include buying and selling at market and undertaking paid labor, while their higher-ranking counterparts participated in the public sphere of social politics, patronage, and creating public products such as print. Married men participated in more domains than women, to be sure, but their status also depended in part upon their marital and household roles. In rural and urban environments, for poor and wealthy, household boundaries remained permeable throughout the period. Paid labor was carried out in parts of the house, apprentices and/or domestic servants and lodgers came and went, and shops and inns doubled up with residential space. As a result, family relationships were often as visible at the end of the eighteenth century as the start thanks to shared housing, the flimsy built environment, and the proximity of family, neighbors, and servants. It is clear, nonetheless, that the everyday material life of the household shaped family relationships. At marriage, husbands gained formal authority over their wives based upon scriptural, legal, and cultural conventions that saw men as dominant and women as subordinate. This theoretical inequity

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prevailed across the period, regardless of enlightenment views about common humanity and individual rights and despite questioning by male and female intellectuals at the end of the century. Yet popular metaphors for marriage, such as “yoked oxen” in Britain and the North American colonies and “he is the sun and she is the moon” in Germany, indicate a shared relationship of mutual interests rather than an oppositional or hierarchical one. Published advice for spouses was also more palatable in its description of the marital relationship as unequal but complementary, predominantly reciprocal, with each owing the other specific rights and duties. It also reminded husbands to consider their wives’ wishes and advice. Love blunted the edge of patriarchal authority, according to these authors; indeed, advice literature cautioned English elite wives to choose a husband well so that his good character facilitated obedience.2 Numerous studies show that interdependency was a feature of many European marriages.3 Much of Europe in this period was pre- or protoindustrial, and, thus, marriages formed a household in which aspects of production, consumption, and reproduction were combined. Yet as advice literature on marriage recognized, though the marital economy bound spouses together in common objectives of achieving and sustaining a livelihood, tasks were not necessarily shared. Married men were primarily defined as family providers. Prevailing normative ideals of masculinity required them to demonstrate their ability to work and support dependents, and economic fecklessness such as drunkenness or wastefulness was condemned by wives as well as community, church, and state. Married women were praised for thrift and efficient household management or government as emblematized across Europe and North America by their status as keeper of the household keys. As Laurel Thatcher Ulrich observes about early New England, a wife “was simultaneously a housewife, a deputy husband, a consort, a mother, a mistress, a neighbor and a Christian.”4 Local variations altered the specificities, and status and wealth transformed participation in household labor to the supervision of an estate, but this combination of roles conveys the scope of most married women’s lives. Marital partnership extended beyond obtaining a livelihood to rearing children. While mothers had greater care of their children during infancy, and though the gendered nature of child rearing meant that boys spent more time with fathers and girls with mothers, parents shared anxieties, childbirth, nursing, and plans for the future. It must not be assumed that because men had greater economic and legal privileges that the marital economy embodied female dependence. Men were dependent upon their wives for essential tasks that facilitated the smooth running of their household as well as the more abstract qualities of status, credit

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worthiness, and reputation. Wives also had profound economic value within the marital economy. Indeed, although there were variations in the laws relating to marriage and inheritance that limited married women’s legal capacity to enter economic contracts and own property, practices necessarily converged so that married women under different legal systems had similar economic capabilities, whether through de jure or de facto rights. All in all, wives contributed invaluable goods, cash, or property at marriage; provisioned the household as consumers, contracting both to purchase household necessities and undertake business activities; and, dependent upon childbearing and rearing, carried out paid labor. The consequences for the spousal relationship are less easily concluded, though there is evidence that wives saw such economic activities as affording them personal value, status, basic marital rights, and respect from their husbands.5 Marriage was so central to social and economic order that spouses were liable to community condemnation and presentation before ecclesiastical or civil jurisdictions for correction or the termination of the marriage if they departed from their marital roles, neglected them, or performed them badly. Divorce was rare even though some Protestant states such as Scotland, Prussia, the Nordic countries, and American states such as Vermont allowed it on the grounds of female adultery and male desertion. Also available, though still fairly uncommon, was separation without remarriage approved by secular and ecclesiastical courts. For the most part, the importance of the marital economy to individual and community livelihoods meant reconciliation was the preferred resolution to conflict. Significantly, while the primary causes of marital breakdown stated in divorce and separation cases were female adultery, male desertion, and male cruelty and adultery, underlying most was the domestic economy—its management and the ownership and distribution of its resources and goods. Accordingly, husbands frequently accused wives of economic insubordination, and wives complained of economic deprivation. Similar issues of labor and property stood at the heart of parent-child tensions. In seventeenth- and eighteenth-century Zurich and seventeenth-century Holland, for example, conflict between parents and adult offspring arose over the point at which children left home to work, the economic prospects of potential sons-in-law, and care of aged parents, with the transmission of property an ever-present bone of contention. The family relationships of impoverished and marginalized families, such as single, widowed, and deserted mothers, could be precarious. While necessity was no respecter of family ties, these family relationships should not be written off as emotionally barren, strategic, indifferent, or even exploitative.6 Families

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in hardship might split up in difficult times but hoped to reform when conditions improved. English correspondence penned by or on behalf of eighteenthcentury paupers attests to intense family love (expressed as being unable to bear watching a loved one suffer), and settlement examinations record indigent wives and husbands trekking across Britain to find each other.7 Poor or unmarried mothers might abandon babies, though this was a last gasp of maternal love rather than neglect. The marital relationships of the poor were inevitably more fluid than those dictated by law thanks to economic insecurity, and some ended in male desertion under the economic pressures of numerous dependent children. But this callous act was popularly condemned; for example, English ballads depicted men with unstable, irregular employment, such as mariners, as poor marriage material. Even so, work on London-based eighteenth-century soldiers’ and sailors’ marriages suggests that while such unions might be prey to economic vicissitudes, they were as likely to be made for affection as survival.8

THE EMOTIONAL LIFE OF FAMILY RELATIONSHIPS A far more intangible measure of family relationships is their emotional content. The age of enlightenment has been seen as the key moment when cool sixteenth- and early seventeenth-century family relationships became more recognizably modern, warm ones. This might be the modern viewer’s first response when comparing Michiel Nouts’s Family Group, 1655, alongside John Singleton Copley’s Sir William Pepperrell and His Family, 1778. To us, the former conveys emotional detachment in its emphasis upon order, harmony, discipline, and instruction. This posed pious family looks directly out at the viewer rather than each other. In the latter, the viewer catches the family members unawares, bound up in each other and displaying naturalized moments of tenderness. Yet our reception says more about our cultural inheritance than these families’ feelings, and, while emotions should be historicized, broad brushstrokes that blacken one era’s familial bonds and rose tint another’s will simply not do. For one thing, temporal models stubbornly refuse to conform in the face of artistic genres. Frans Hals’s Family Group of 1647 animatedly interact far more than Nouts’s, and, in composition and natural setting, the painting bears a striking resemblance to portraits a century later. Equally, Arthur Devis’s formal doll-like families of mid-eighteenth-century England look more like Nouts’s family a century earlier. The question is not whether families suddenly fell in love with each other but why they chose to portray themselves in a particular way. Such decisions were influenced by enlightenment thought.

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FIGURE 1.1: A Family Group, attributed to Michiel Nouts, National Gallery Picture

Library.

Images of married couples in French, British, and American art echoed prevailing ideas about ideal marital unions. For example, paired portraits of English and American married couples (husband and wife separately portrayed but intended to be hung together) evoked companionate ideals, capturing in their gendered tone the complementary nature of enlightenment unions. By the later eighteenth century, couples in double portraits, such as Thomas Gainsborough’s Mr. and Mrs. Hallet: “The Morning Walk,” 1785, touched, gazed at each other, or leaned together, highlighting the delights of a marriage of two well-suited souls: intimacy, compatibility, friendship, and “restrained masculine authority.”9 The increasing idealization of love between spouses is evident in print culture from the mid-eighteenth century. Prescription aimed at genteel married couples in England was far more effusive in praising emotional intimacy than its early modern counterpart. Eighteenth-century American newspapers and periodicals lauded marriage as a symmetrical union fusing “passion and intellect, head and heart,” often described as “the most perfect state of friendship.”10 Moral commentators in Britain, North America, and

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FIGURE 1.2: Sir William Pepperrell and his Family, John Singleton Copley, North Carolina Museum of Art Foundation, Inc.

France attacked marriages made purely to further financial interests. Popular sentimental fiction effused over perfect matches forged through friendship, heart-racing emotions, and joint benevolence for others. Differences in timing are noticeable as this sentimentalized image only fully flourished after 1800 in countries such as Germany, Sweden, and Norway. Without diagnosing it as a generational change in family behavior, it is evident that individuals adopted the sentimental vocabulary of a union of hearts. Nicole Eustace shows that American men’s courtship letters deployed romantic rhetoric despite the public nature of their correspondence, sent as it was to family and friends of their prospective match. Those who commissioned portraits clearly positioned their marriage at the forefront of new fashions. Nevertheless, their relationship might depart substantially from the intimate or harmonious version on display and by no means replaced previous concepts of marital union. Love was not necessarily ruled out even in marriages founded

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on economic necessity or forged to promote family interests, since love might be expected to develop and flourish after the ceremony based as it was on ideas of parity rather than passion. Commissioned family portraits in the second half of the eighteenth century similarly naturalized loving family relationships. There was a shift from multifigure groups centered on an aloof principal male figure and inanimate children to parents cuddling or playing with spontaneous children and exchanging rapt gazes. Genre paintings projected these ideals onto laboring families for higher-ranking delectation by depicting devoted rustic parents. Etienne Aubry’s L’Amour Paternal is a particularly sensitive example. It is by no means the case that images of enamored familial love were new. For example, Peter Paul Rubens’s portrait of the family of Jan Breughel the Elder (1612–1613) conveys close-knit hearts through an entwined chain of hands. Dutch golden age art frequently located both parents in the midst of family. But there were shifts in form. Allegory and symbolism gave way to greater characterization of adults and, especially, children. With the focus on children, mothers moved to center stage and fathers lightened up. While still moralizing, these images were also innovative in that they depicted ecstatically happy mothers, fathers, and children.11 Perhaps also novel was the different role of the child vis-à-vis the parents’ relationship. In these later eighteenth-century imaginings of the family, effusive affection bound father-mother-child into a loving triad. This sacralized the marital bond as well as the parental one, with the latter evidence of the former. In Catholic countries, particularly those with populationist concerns, numerous children were depicted, such as Jean-Baptiste Greuze’s La mere beinaimee, 1765. Again, this was not a shift from traditional to modern family relationships. While seventeenth-century family portraits were explicitly structured around the father as patriarchal head and placed emphasis upon dynastic lineage, neither element disappeared in the later eighteenth century; they were simply coded differently. The father’s dominance was signified by his placement in the composition. Concerns about primogeniture are also detectable in the painting’s intended location, which conveyed the sense of an unbroken succession. These shifts permeated other cultural forms. Central to the Enlightenment was the effort to define women. Older justifications for women’s position in society, based in religion, were joined by new medical explanations that collapsed gender into sex. Consequently, women were increasingly seen as natural mothers. A cult of maternity, in which motherhood was venerated as a natural state that extended past childbearing to child rearing and beyond, swept through the Western world from the later seventeenth century. It was conceptualized

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FIGURE 1.3: Paternal Love, Etienne Aubry, The Barber Institute of Fine Arts, University

of Birmingham.

as tenderness, physical and emotional ministering to children, moral guidance of offspring, and personal self-sacrifice. Joshua Reynolds’s glowing portrait of Lady Cockburn and her sons (1773) captures this trend. The impact of this trend was extensive through Europe and North America despite differences in practice; in France, it coincided with the persistence of wet-nursing urban-born babies in the countryside. As Colin Heywood points out, children brought up in these conditions of extended separation from their mothers described in their memoirs transferring their love to surrogate mothers—perhaps a grandmother, an unrelated woman paid to care for them, or, if they were lucky, a good wet nurse. Clearly, the elevation of maternity also conferred status upon such female substitutes. Like maternity, paternity had long held a valued status in society. It was one of the badges of mature manhood, a sign of fertility and a conveyor of authority so powerful that childless men acted as surrogate fathers to children or assumed symbolic versions of fatherhood as philanthropists and godfathers. The ideal seventeenth-century patriarchal father was a procreator,

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disciplinarian, and all-around family magistrate, but the age of enlightenment’s paternal ideal emphasized different characteristics. The generations following Locke were advised to recognize their children’s particular abilities and characters; to discipline them through reason rather than right; and, though the father’s role as discipliner did not disappear, to be a friend more than a master. Simon Schama suggests that one novelty of seventeenth-century family scenes in Dutch art was the “domestication of the father and his absorption within the home circle.”12 Still, these fathers, busy at the center of their home and children, are somehow less emotionally enthralled than their counterparts a century later—for example, Jean-Honore Fragonard’s spellbound father in La Visite a la nourrice, c. 1775. Furthermore, with the reign of the age of feeling, a new ideal took hold in Britain, France, and North America in which fathers were also expected to take on more physical caregiving and hands-on affection. Paternal emotional responsiveness was demanded beyond infancy into an offspring’s maturity. This model of sentimental fatherhood even extended into state expectations. The French state offered tax relief to fathers with ten and more children between 1760 and 1790. Lesley Tuttle shows that while this imperative was driven by populationist concerns, royal officials also sought evidence of a petitioning father’s conformity to the sentimentalized ideal of the good pere de famille when deciding whether to grant him a tax reduction. These cultural shifts emerged out of several strands of enlightenment thinking. Broadly speaking, the images of family life served as a safety net for society. Enlightenment ideas were perceived to potentially threaten the cohesiveness of society. Sarah Maza observes that in France, ideas about social contracts and the uniqueness of human individuality raised the specter of social atomization, and, therefore, the sentimental family acted as a compensatory source of order for the collective imagination. For enlightenment figures deploring the moral corruption of society, the virtuous, benevolent family also allowed the imagining of a new, enlightened social order. Domestic tableaux in art, fiction, and drama stirred feeling and enabled the viewer to participate in common humanity.13 More specifically, two influential enlightenment programs for educating children had implications for parent-child relationships. John Locke’s educational tract Some Thoughts Concerning Education (1693), which was translated into several European languages, including French, German, Italian, Dutch, and Swedish, identified childhood as the period when careful education was necessary to develop the reason and self-control required of the male citizen. The second, arising out of the culture of sensibility, is best represented by Jean Jacques Rousseau’s Emile, ou de l’education (1762), which gave prominence

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to the notion of childhood innocence. Like Locke, Rousseau envisaged childhood as a distinctive phase requiring specialized treatment. But in his recommendation of an unforced upbringing among natural surroundings, which protected the maturing child from the hazards of sophisticated civilization and adult authority, he parted company from the Lockean inculcation of reason for those under age twelve. Education should be a form of play, learning from activities rather than people. Romanticism, gathering force across Europe at the turn of the eighteenth century, gave further depth to this conceptualization of childhood by associating it with divinity, awarding it redemptive powers over adults, and exploring its place in forming the unique adult self. It is possible that such enlightenment values reshaped the way the broader parent-child relationship was conceived. For the most part, it was characterized by reciprocity, with each side providing emotional and material requirements according to age, gender, wealth, and employment. Hence, preindustrial societies expected parents to invest financially as well as emotionally in their children’s well-being through support during a child’s training, marriage, child rearing, widowhood, and during life crises such as sickness or poverty. In return, children offered varying degrees of material assistance to parents, particularly in their old age. While unequally weighted toward children, the instrumental elements of this relationship were not viewed as problematic or incompatible with care and affection. Sometimes the mutual benefits of relationships were openly acknowledged by both sides. In Neckarhausen, in southern Germany, obligation could extend beyond the immediate family and was related to the exchange of land and wealth. Therefore, family members were prepared to care for each other in return for resources and property. Throughout Europe, parents envisaged their children as the comforts, consolation, and joy of their old age. There is scattered evidence, however, that a new concept of parental selfsacrifice was developing out of the enlightenment revisioning of childhood and emphasis upon the family as the source of virtuous society. Self-sacrificing mothers were praised in France and Britain, and there were similar expectations that fathers would follow suit.14 Studies of Germany and the southern American state of Virginia at the turn of the eighteenth century show that a new idealization of disinterested parenting emerged in middle-class and gentry families whereby the parents’ relationship to their children was characterized as devoid of needs and unselfishly loving and giving. Daily activities performed on behalf of children were sacralized and seen less as part of a parent’s everyday routine and more as an expression of love. The scales of parental investment were thus tipping more to emotional than material investment.

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REVOLUTIONARY FAMILY RELATIONSHIPS The early modern head of household, in theoretical if not actual form, was a married man who wielded authority over his dependents and owed them obligations including protection, religious instruction, training, food, and shelter. Responsible for their public activities and reputation, he held the right to correct them physically if they were disobedient or transgressed social and cultural norms. Some seventeenth-century political theorists perceived this ideal relationship of mastery and dependency as analogous to that of the monarch with his subjects, which assisted them in justifying absolute monarchy. Furthermore, in ancien régime France, laws and policies deliberately reinforced the authority of fathers in order to achieve social stability. Such “intimate connections between family and polity” remained a staple of eighteenth-century political rhetoric, particularly evident in the ferment of revolutionary and republican America and France.15 Although opposing political ideologies harnessed the family to their own ends, there were differences in the arguments presented. The family secured the existing social order for sixteenth- and early seventeenthcentury theorists, while for eighteenth-century republicans the newly forged family relationship would remake society. In America and France, marriage was pivotal in helping theorists redefine the individual’s relationship with the state: affectionate marriage was the glue binding citizens into a virtuous republic. As one American commentator put it, marrying and producing a family meant a “man feels a growing attachment to human nature, and love to his country.”16 In the first two years of the French revolution, various voices demanded marriage reform as part of the reinvention of the nation. Liberty within marriage represented societal liberty—both as a contract entered into out of free choice rather than arranged and as gender complementarity. Such ardor for the marital union as the means to inculcate love in society and, therefore, as the forger of republican idylls electrified the discussion of the roles of women and men as spouses and parents. As wives, women were supposed to fashion husbands into ideal republicans and patriots: moderate, virtuous, faithful, good tempered, benign governors. In both French and American rhetoric, the influence of wives was based upon a combination of their sexual appeal to men and their capacity for prudence, virtue, and refinement. They would literally seduce husbands into proving their bravery, honesty, and honor and served as exemplars to their husbands.17 Women also reared sons who would form the republican citizenry. “La mere republicaine,” for example, was the subject of drama, patriotic speeches, and women’s clubs in 1790’s France.18 Similar idealism affected notions of child

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rearing. Philadelphians in the postrevolutionary period saw an enlightenmentstyle education of children as crucial to rearing a virtuous republican citizenry since it stimulated moral good sense and gave children the capacity to distinguish between good and evil. Clearly, mothers were crucial in what the physician and educator Benjamin Rush called “nurseries of wise and good men.”19 Republican motherhood was also bound up with pronatalism in France, where the new French nation celebrated fecund maternity as a way to enlarge its population to the benefit of state and society. Under revolutionary government, festive occasions included parades of pregnant women celebrating both family values and the foundation of a strong nation.20 Men were also bearers of national strength. The French royal government rewarded fathers who had ten and more children with tax breaks, and in 1791 the new regime taxed bachelors older than thirty-six.21 Actually, preserving children was a concern of numerous eighteenth-century individuals and states partly because the improved survival of children was identified as the way to increase the nation’s population and thereby its strength and grandeur. The citizen-father was also an essential part of the reconfigured republican family. The French constitution of 1795 observed “No one is a good citizen if he is not a good son, good father, good husband.” American republicans mythologized their leaders as “fathers of the republic,” but they were envisioning the tender, guiding father rather than the distant, potentially tyrannical father against whom they rebelled.22 In fact, fatherhood was a badge of citizenship deployed across Europe by the later eighteenth century. In Germany, the citizen was the married man whose familial, rather than public, status gave him his civil freedoms. Aristocratic English men commissioned portraits of themselves as tender spouses and fathers in order to advertise their position as virtuous citizens. New ideological formulations of family relationships affected conceptions of authority. After all, if spouses were passionate friends and parents devoted to serving their children, how was authority to be exercised? The answer seems to have entailed a renegotiation of the expression of authority. Indeed, the Enlightenment saw a general shift to favoring paternalistic government over patriarchal. French visual arts, drama, and literature display tensions over patriarchal authority. Prerevolutionary art was obsessed with old men, frequently fathers, struggling to retain their authority—sometimes honored and obeyed but often challenged by rebellious sons. Lynn Hunt proposes that the evolution of images of fathers undermined royal authority and authority in general, thereby preparing the political unconscious for the execution of the king—the highest father in the land—in 1793. Jeffrey Merrick traces the same shift in ideals of fatherhood

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in successive revisions of the parable of the prodigal son by early eighteenthcentury preachers and later eighteenth-century philosophes. Such ideals were briefly put into practice. Suzanne Desan shows that the French Revolution profoundly altered intimate relationships through social reforms that elevated the rights of the family’s individual members over the interests of lineage. In the 1790s, marriage was redefined as a freely chosen secular civil contract, divorce was widely available, and inheritance laws were overhauled to be more egalitarian and to undermine patriarchal authority. The drafters of the Civil Code of 1804, however, introduced laws that reinstated patriarchal family values. Prussian legal reform in 1794 also restricted the discretionary powers of husbands and heads of households, a legal intervention that caused some backlash.23 For the most part, however, patriarchy was increasingly cloaked through the eighteenth century but the power of men as husbands and fathers was not diminished; rather, it was naturalized and therefore less discussed and less visible. This shift in thinking is well illustrated by the rejection of corporal punishment as an acceptable tool to be deployed by men against their dependents, whether wives, children, or household members. While wife beating, as opposed to the physical correction of disobedience, had long been condemned, the age of enlightenment saw an expansion in what acts by husbands were considered cruel. Where children’s discipline was concerned, the Lockean formulation was that rewards and shame were the preferred methods for disciplining children, not patriarchal beatings. Enlightenment pedagogues further discredited corporal punishment in eighteenth-century Europe, paralleling the move away from the state’s use of public corporal and capital punishment. While Protestant notions that the rod be used to save the child did not disappear, they were taken more as a general willingness to enforce discipline with only occasional use of corporal punishment. Yet, as ever, no simple modernizing process is evident. Just as some husbands continued to hit wives, the corporal punishment of children survived. Colin Heywood, for example, provides nineteenth-century examples, and Anthony Fletcher charts the consistent deployment of corporal punishment in English public schools. Long-standing psychological methods of discipline remained in use—for example, in France and Holland, where an army of bogeymen, goblins, and monsters was used to keep children under control.24 Similarly, the authority of married women over their families changed. Long acknowledged to exercise government over servants and children, an increasingly higher value was attached to their moral authority. It is still unclear how far this improved their status and whether it empowered or disempowered

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them. Both republican and liberal rhetoric defined public politics as the domain of male citizens, thereby restricting women to the domestic sphere through theories such as moral motherhood. Yet public and private were never so sharply differentiated, and the significance accorded motherhood was used to support a variety of stances, whether feminist or conservative. Nonetheless, it is clear that when idealized through the cult of domesticity, expectations of “intense mothering” shaped notions of family relationships well into the nineteenth century.25

CONCLUSION Although new visions and depictions of family relationships conquered Western Europe and America in the enlightenment era, there was no universal transformation in experience. Certainly social elites and the literate were familiar with these novel concepts. Some constructed personal identities around them and adopted their vocabulary. For example, Virginian and Maryland family correspondence evolved from emotional restraint to emotional deluge over the eighteenth century. Cultural values also framed thinking on policies and activities that extended their social impact. But numerous factors complicate the relationship between culture and lived behavior. Local economic demands that structured labor, household form, and property transmission also shaped family relationships. Similarly, even if wealth and status meant that family members were well aware of cultural demands, individuals prioritized other aspects of their lives, perhaps placing duty and piety over indulgence in their personal style of parenting. Even if families sought to advertise themselves in newly fashionable ways, their lives may still have fallen short of these ideals. Equally, love and affection could thrive in relationships that did not conform to fashionable ideals. Even after factoring in political, legal, social, economic, and cultural variations, the profoundly unpredictable element of personal dynamics in family relationships remains. Nonetheless, these new values gained influence because they were used to judge people’s behavior: by the individual, by one generation against another, and by the social elite in their dealings with their social inferiors. Accordingly, the extent to which a family presented itself in public was determined, even limited, by cultural conventions of what was acceptable, permitted, and laudable. This explains why family relationships in 1800 looked and sounded very different from their 1650 counterparts despite similar roots in love, care, commitment, and obligation.

CHAPTER TWO

Community alysa levene

Community is a wonderfully broad and fuzzy term. From Alpine upland settlements to American pioneer towns, from French villages to industrializing English cities, community forms and types differed considerably. According to an entry in the International Encyclopedia of the Social and Behavioural Sciences, “community, one of the most ubiquitous and imprecise terms in the social sciences, is usually associated with an array of positive connotations such as solidarity, familiarity, unity of purpose, interest and identity.”1 People often identify strongly with one or more communities, be they based on residence, language, religion, interests, or kin. A community, in a sense, is whatever the individual makes of it, however informal that might be, but at the heart of any community are common interests and common ground—often literally. What of the family and the child’s experience of community, however? Children left few records of their own social encounters, but there are many ways to access their families’ principal relationships. Kinship and household formation itself; work practices; religious meetings; the physical layout of settlements; facilities for education, employment, and play; and housing type all had an impact on sociability and interactions with others. Families mediated and shaped community relations for their members while children also formed their own ties and relationships via their friends, neighbors, associates, and employers. Age itself could be a marker of a separate identity, although this is harder to access in historical sources for this period. It is important to trace the primary influences on the formative socialization of children and growing

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families since these influences shaped their lasting frames of reference. It also reveals much about past attitudes and treatment of the young and is vital for understanding the cultural history of both childhood and children as well as of families more broadly. The notion of community and its impact on families’ socialization and social experience has only been incorporated into historical studies in the vaguest of senses. The term is used synonymously with kin or neighborhood or even as a catch-all word denoting all social ties with little thought to its wider meanings. Many communities were based on family or household units, and children generally received their formative experiences of those communities via their families. Fragmented families and lone children had quite different experiences of community life, however, perhaps interacting with a number of other households or support systems. Family influences could also extend far beyond parents and siblings, and households frequently included members not related by blood, such as servants and apprentices. Samuel Johnson defined the word family simply as “those who live in the same house.” The household could therefore encapsulate a whole range of social, communal, and hierarchical relationships that were transmitted to its members. Children also participated in new forms of social relations when they lived or served in other families. This overlap of family/household and community functions in socializing family members is often overlooked by historians and historical anthropologists. The proximity of wider kin depended on settlement type, migration patterns, and adult survival rates, and—as Lynch reminds us—local kin were not necessarily practical kin, nor were they always able or willing to help other family members in times of need.2 Wider kin thus served several community functions: mutual and practical support in child care, loan giving, and shared labor; a sense of self-definition and belonging based on mutual ties to a place; and a communal fellowship based on lineage and birth. Only the latter was exclusively provided by kin rather than other community relationships. The weight of each of these ties probably varied considerably from place to place, but it should be stressed that while wider kin ties could form a very significant aspect of an individual family’s community, they were generally only a part of it. Certain relationships were thus particularly relevant for families and the young beyond immediate or even wider kin. Many of these—such as neighbors and friends, charitable and informal care givers, and religious communities— remain visible in the historical record. They cover both horizontal (among equals) and vertical ties (based on deference or patriarchy). Others, such as religion, contained both: a shared spiritual fellowship combined with a community hierarchy. Many of these communities were based on common physical

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residence patterns, but others fall under what Benedict Anderson has called “imagined communities,” or shared frames of reference based on nationhood, values, or religion.3 Essentially, community and its physical and imagined structures gave people’s lives their core framework, their emotional and economic support, and their most immediate socialization outside the family. Community thus offers a novel and flexible way of examining the cultural experiences of family and wider life.

COMMUNITY AND THE ENLIGHTENMENT The Enlightenment introduced two distinctive and formative themes as far as communities are concerned: firstly, the interrelated (although not dependent) growth of urban and industrialized economies; and secondly, the impact of enlightenment thinking itself. Although Britain was the only Western country to experience large-scale urban and industrial expansion in this period, it set the form that other countries followed at an accelerated rate in the nineteenth century. Furthermore, urban specialization and regional network formation based on smaller towns was very significant over a much wider area during this period and especially after 1750. Europe’s urban population grew by forty percent in its period of most rapid expansion between 1750 and 1800, and although the majority of people continued to dwell in rural areas, many more experienced life in towns as temporary migrants and visitors.4 Finally, urbanization and industrial growth affected nonurban communities as well—for example, via protoindustry and waged manufacture—while not all towns went through a period of intensive industrialization. At an aggregate level, urban growth and links with towns intensified in this period. The relationship between urbanization and community is, however, complex. It was long assumed that urbanization brought about an atomization of community, weakening kinship ties, patriarchal authority, and bonds of peer surveillance and making strangers of neighbors and associates. The rural community, in contrast, was depicted as stable and inclusive, providing “protection in the invisible presence of fathers and forefathers resting in the village cemetery.”5 This dichotomy has now been challenged, and several studies have instead uncovered a significant presence of local kin in towns and a general vibrancy in urban communities. The assumption that both kin and wider community ties were weakened by these developments is in any case somewhat perverse since an absence of kin would likely raise the significance of other social networks. Indeed, Keith Snell suggests that English industrialization “coincided with strong and often heightened senses of place and belonging, as

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well as with an intensification of regional cultures and local pride.”6 Urbanization and industrialization undoubtedly did bring changes in the setting and intensity of family and community relationships, but (like previous movements such as the Reformation, the Counter-Reformation, and Puritanism, which were blamed for atomizing social relationships) they did not necessarily entail the disintegration of previous bonds or the likelihood of forming new ones. Indeed, Kathryn Lynch suggests that community bonds in new locations might be particularly strong for being more deliberately sought.7 Other measurable changes in the urban community landscape also deserve greater consideration, including increases in population density, exclusivity, and social and economic diversity. The idyllic stability of rural communities should not be written off, but many of its more imagined aspects were, in any case, portable. Migrants often brought a sense of community with them when they moved and sought out people from their home places in their new setting. This was particularly noticeable among North American settlers from different parts of Europe: German Protestants to Pennsylvania, the Dutch to the New Netherlands, and French Huguenots in South Carolina. This did not necessarily guarantee their acceptance by those already there since migrants could represent competition or evoke dislike because of cultural stereotypes or social and linguistic exclusivity. Maryland, for example, denied political rights to non-English or Irish settlers until 1674. In many cases, however (as will be explored further), the younger generation bridged the ground between the imagined community their parents had left and the new physical one. In other places and circumstances, the whole family might find themselves welcomed into new friendship groups, skills, and language. The urbanization and industrialization of the Enlightenment brought new reasons to migrate, but families had long dealt with the consequences of mass movement. Both permanent and temporary migration for work were longestablished aspects of the economy of makeshifts in many parts of Europe, such as the Alps and the North Atlantic coast, and had a deep impact on family life. Men from communities with poor year-round economic opportunities— like mountainous Galicia, parts of Ireland, and the North Sea coast—spent months away at work, and the children they left behind grew up for much of the year in female-dominated communities with only “the sublimated image of the absent father” providing a tie to the patriarchal model.8 Children from Austria’s Tyrol and Varalberg areas annually migrated for work themselves to earn money or relieve the burden at home, bringing a completely different set of immediate ties and influences to their own experiences and leaving a gap in

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the household they left behind. The sense of community in these cases was fluid and adaptive, although also perhaps unstable. The start of intercontinental migration also predates this period, but its pace quickened after 1650, especially to America, where it was frequently characterized by the chain migration of cohesive ethnic or religious communities such as French and German Protestants and English Puritans and Quakers. The first two boatloads of British settlers in the Delaware valley in America, for example, were both Quaker and Welsh, transporting nationality, religion, and kinship overseas. Family migration assured a degree of community continuity for its members, but assimilation required them to adopt new language and customs. The start of a larger-scale transition to urban life in this period marks out perhaps the most famous expression of opposing experiences of community: the twin concepts of Gemeinschaft and Gesellschaft. These two concepts, set out by Ferdinand Tönnies in 1887 although not devised by him, contrasted networks based on personal, emotional, or natural relationships (Gemeinschaft) from those with a commercial, formal, or rational footing (Gesellschaft). The latter was particularly associated with cities, where individualism rather than collectivity was emphasized, and is generally located in the period 1450–1750.9 The shift in relationships and mentalities from Gemeinschaft to Gesellschaft has particular relevance for a discussion of families and children since one of the defining relationships in the Gemeinschaft community is that of mother and child and, to a slightly lesser extent, father and child. Since close family ties are generally rooted in emotion rather than contract, they arguably fulfill the characteristics of the Gemeinschaft even when they are located in cities and towns. Tönnies himself did not make this link: he saw children, like women, as at risk from urban society. Like Rousseau before him, he believed cities were corrupters of children. This emphasis by contemporary thinkers and writers on the link between the environment and child development in particular formed one of the Enlightenment’s distinctive themes. Rousseau was one of several key figures who wrote about children and childhood and whose theories had resonance for the concept of wider community. Rousseau saw children as inherently innocent but subject to corruption by town life and benefiting from informal education and strengthening in nature. By stressing the significance of the way a child’s early life is directed, he implicitly raised the profile of parents, families, and community rather than formal education in shaping the child’s character. He was not alone in focusing on a child’s environment and community as the main reference point for socialization and formation. Locke pointed to the impact of a child’s formative influences in shaping his or her adult character seventy

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years before the publication of Emile, Rousseau’s best-known work on child rearing, and Hume also stressed the significance of individual experience in the mid-eighteenth century. Other writers focused on the nature of a child’s memory and early experiences (in which family life was key) in shaping personality and attempted to make scientific evaluations of character formation. More widely, another central concern of the Enlightenment was the nature of civil society and its social bonds; in other words, the nature of communities, individuals, and nations. The Enlightenment thus produced several important considerations related to childhood, family life, and community formation more generally. Urbanization gave the Enlightenment a distinctive character by the end of the eighteenth century (not least because so many of its primary exponents were based in cities), but most of the population of Western Europe and America still lived in rural settlements in this period. Experiences of everyday and community life for most children and their families were still based on a small nexus of known contacts, many of whom were wider kin. Enlightenment thought may scarcely have penetrated these communities at all, and in much of Europe and North America the Enlightenment may not have been distinctively different from the periods that had gone before. However, the move toward economic specialization and mechanization; the development of markets and communication, transport, literacy, and education; and the more rational and scientific mode of thought that characterized the Enlightenment marked this period out as one of transition in many fields of everyday and family life across a wide range of community types.

NEIGHBORS AND FRIENDS One of the markers of change in urban settings was the concentration of families and individuals in residential areas. Domestic privacy and exclusive family space became more limited for plebeian families, and most people lived their lives in the semipublic environment of their neighborhood. Indeed, in burgeoning and crowded urban alleys, courtyards, and townhouses it was hard to avoid close contact with one’s neighbors, and the care and upbringing of children was one of the most liminal areas between public and private. Neighbors formed a vibrant part of immediate community networks, and good neighborly relations were vital for personal standing, credit, loan giving, information sharing, and friendship. The Puritan minister Cotton Mather was moved partly from compassion for a neighbor’s family when he took into his home one of the girls supposedly possessed during the Salem witch trials. In a more traditional setting,

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gentry landowners like the English Verneys provided assistance and patronage for many of their tenants and neighbors both in Buckinghamshire, the site of the family seat, and in London. Neighborly relations could thus operate on either a horizontal or vertical axis, but where they were grounded in a common and confined physical space they were generally between approximate equals. These types of relationships tended to be based on a degree of common consensus about behavior norms and reciprocity, and they played an active role in reinforcing standards as well as providing more practical support. Poor relations with one’s neighbors could threaten the family’s reputation and credit, cause tension in the home, and even provoke the intervention of the authorities in the domestic unit if disputes got out of hand. Neighbors provided women with many of their principal social contacts and so were particularly influential for family life and young children at home with their mothers. Neighbors also played key roles in defining family rites of passage: as birth attendants, godparents, caregivers, and vigil attendants. They helped set up apprenticeship and employment contracts and cared for orphaned children. They were also likely candidates as stepparents when widowed parents remarried, blurring the boundary between kin and non-kin even further. Cotton Mather expressed a common experience when he wrote that child rearing was a joint matter for the family, church, and school. These ties cemented social capital and patriarchal ties and reveal much about community ties of fellowship and makeshift against future need. More broadly, neighborhood surveillance was instrumental in assuring ordered and proper social relationships, including those between children and parents and children and other adults. Capp finds that bad parenting triggered neighborhood disputes, and contemporary writings condemned the rowdiness of gangs of children and youths—for example, outside church on Sundays.10 The surveillance of children’s behavior was in part simply the result of close and public living, but it was also necessary because their conduct was one measure of the established social order of the neighborhood. Again, this need for neighborhood watchfulness has been linked to the loss of kin surveillance of family due to urbanization, migration, and secularization. Children’s own friendships leave fewer records than those of adults. Upperclass child diarists only occasionally mentioned friends of their own age, although some of the relationships they did write about were very strong. Most descriptions of play and activities instead involved siblings. Adult diarists sometimes mentioned children at play: the American estate-owner William Byrd (writing in the early eighteenth century) noted that his eleven-year-old son had been hurt throwing snowballs while the American Puritan Samuel

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Sewall described seeing children playing “trap ball.” We may suppose plebeian children mixed with their peers in the neighborhood and also at more structured locations like the church, school, and workplace. Much of the formal and informal work done by young children threw them together in streets, fields, and markets, but it is hard to be sure how far this shaped a specific culture of youth. Such a culture has been most commented on for apprentices, although one of the most comprehensive works on the topic doubts that many of their social experiences were exclusive to their age group and also points out that the mobility of youth mitigated against the construction of strong friendship ties.11 There were some social activities in which children played a particular part—notably May Day festivities, hiring fairs, and feasts of misrule, where social order was inverted and women and children reigned—but, if anything, their strength was on the wane in this period of increased secularization and attrition of rural traditions. What was new to this period was an increased emphasis on play, games, books, and activities especially for children, but their impact was probably greatest within middle-class and gentry families. This period thus saw a change in the intensity of neighborly relations because of the more packed living conditions in the largest towns and cities. Even in 1666, Samuel Pepys noted that parts of the city of London affected by the Great Fire were very densely populated, and subsequent rebuilding and suburbanization did little to ameliorate the situation. Economic specialization further concentrated solidarity by supporting pockets of settlement that shared employment types. There is also a suggestion that urbanization and migration away from kin brought a greater role for neighbors in both surveillance and assistance, although this should not be taken too far. All these factors increased the prominence of neighbors in family relations and social lives. Work on parishes and rural communities, however, reminds us of the long history of local support and should warn us against seeing change at the expense of continuity. It seems likely that the greatest change in the intensity of neighborly interactions with the family took place in poor and plebeian urban areas because of the greater levels of crowding and in-migration in these localities. Enlightenment ideas also placed greater emphasis on the theoretical perceptions of the neighborhood, like other units of solidarity. This was an especially live issue in revolutionary France and America, where new conceptions of nationhood were being articulated toward the end of this period. As already noted, changes in philosophical outlook probably had little bearing on most people’s daily lives, but changes might be effected via landlords’ and employers’ beneficence to their tenants and employees and via more centralized policies on charity or political representation, which fostered a sense of benevolence and belonging.

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While urbanization shaped neighborhoods and enlightenment writers conceptualized them in new ways, the nature of interpersonal relationships may have changed relatively little.

CHARITY AND COMMUNITIES OF CAREGIVERS Children and, to a lesser extent, poor families in general became a particular focus of charity during the Enlightenment. The growth of towns and commercial wealth produced not only densely packed living conditions for the poorer sorts but also a large body of middling- and upper-class people eager to cement their social status via public philanthropy. Poor children were particularly privileged among recipients of beneficence as they were both needy and innocent. Enlightenment-era authors contributed to this assessment as they lauded compassion for the deserving poor and also stressed the benefits of population expansion to national economies. Abandoned babies and unmarried but penitent mothers were some of the principal beneficiaries of this changing outlook. Poor families were regarded more equivocally, especially after the publication of Thomas Malthus’s 1798 Essay on Population, which articulated the propensity of the poor to reproduce beyond their capacity to support themselves. Before that, however, poverty was bound up with moral behavior in many benefactors’ minds, and poor families overburdened with children risked being characterized as feckless and unwilling to work. This is one reason for the failure of a charity to support abandoned babies in England before the early eighteenth century, and even after this date supporters worried that the London Foundling Hospital (founded in 1739) was rewarding premarital sex and discouraging marriage. In Catholic Europe, this was overridden by a concern for the souls of unbaptized babies, but high levels of provision for foundlings were accompanied by strict surveillance of unmarried mothers. Babies and children themselves were less equivocal subjects of community support than poor families and unmarried mothers. Although Malthus made the link between poverty and national productivity explicit, it had already been discussed by political economists like Adam Smith, Patrick Coulquhoun, Jeremy Bentham, and Benjamin Franklin and political arithmeticians like John Graunt, to name but some English-speaking examples. Philosophy, economics, wealth, and benevolence all combined with the more visible profile of poverty in growing towns to change the scale and form of charitable care in this period, and children were drawn into current discourses about the needy and how to improve their lot. Foundling hospitals and orphanages were among the most high-profile new charities in this period: in England,

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Germany, and France, these charities received their first lasting foundations in the eighteenth century, and in Italy, Spain, and Portugal, they experienced growing demand. This has been linked to a parallel rise in illegitimacy rates, although the causality and nature of the relationship is complex. It is clear that married as well as unmarried parents abandoned babies and even used foundling hospitals to alleviate poverty temporarily and to access free nursing for their infants. Benefactors supported these and other charities generously, partly from compassion and partly for the prestige it reflected on them. Some of this prestige was publicly delivered via processions, concerts, and charity sermons: children had become not only prime objects of community support but also providers of community prestige. As already noted, however, the allure of these children as charity objects lay partly in their removal from their natal families. The growth of foundling charities depended on another much older form of community support for families and orphaned or abandoned babies: wetnursing. Nursing another woman’s child either for money or from kindness is one of the oldest recorded forms of community support. In France and Italy, there was already a thriving and organized nursing market by the mid-seventeenth century catering to foundling hospitals and private families. Studies have shown the importance of community and kin ties in locating willing and suitable nurses, who often lived at a distance from their employer’s home or the foundling hospital (one of the motivations behind wet-nursing was the removal of babies from unhealthy urban to healthy rural settings). Thus, the nursed child received much of his or her formative social experience in another community altogether while the formal relationship between employer and nurse cemented social capital and patronage. Some nurses formed strong emotional bonds with their charges, indicating the relationship could be more than a financial one, and many foundling hospitals noted the sadness of nurses when they had to part with them. Adult writers also expressed ongoing fondness for their childhood nurses—Samuel Pepys recorded his memory of playing in the fields of Kingsland where he was nursed—and diarists sometimes dwelt on the problems of finding suitable women and of visits paid to infants at nurse. The removal of a child from the foster community and family must in some cases have been very shocking for both sides and probably changed the nature of family relationships in the natal home. Nursing also, however, provided a fashionable, and sometimes vital, service to many families. The impact of this service came under increased attack during the Enlightenment, although writers like the Puritan clergyman William Gouge had railed against it in the seventeenth century—partly because of its effects on the family bond. When the

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mother could feed her own child, many enlightenment-era writers stated that she should: it was her responsibility to raise healthy future citizens and form loving bonds with her children. The change in attitude seems to have had little response in France where private nursing was most widespread, although there is evidence of more maternal feeding among the upper classes in England and more generally in America. Another form of established community child care was the circulation of children between families. Richard Wall was one of the first historians to highlight how common this phenomenon was for accessing training and apprenticeship, acculturation, and social capital formation and relieving the pressure of poverty in the natal family.12 Some of these exchanges were based on contractual relations, but many were part of a more informal and communal approach to child rearing and family support or even an impromptu form of adoption. The need for this support was exacerbated by high levels of adult mortality: Laslett calculated that between twenty-one and thirty-six percent of children aged ten had lost at least one parent in early modern England and France, and Anderson that two percent of children were total orphans by the age of ten in England.13 Children also made up a larger proportion of the total population in this period than they do now—between one third and one half in England and a little over half in seventeenth-century New England—raising their visibility and presence in individual households.14 The age at which children left their natal homes varied considerably, and, like many other aspects of household formation and child rearing, there was some geographical variation. In Italy, for example, periods of service outside the home as part of the life cycle of young women were very unusual and regarded as demeaning while in England they were common. Children were thus one of the key foci of charitable support during the Enlightenment, indicating the importance of this time of life for the shaping of future adults and also as a period of helplessness and innocence deserving of support. Poor families did not occupy so easy a niche, and many charities supported individual members rather than maintaining the integrity of the unit. By the end of the period, economic pessimism, war, a degree of evangelical revival, and changes in economic thought had all contributed to a greater sense of general unease about the role of charity in encouraging dependency and immorality. Donations contracted to focus on immediate community ties and charities that worked toward moral improvement such as Sunday and charity schools. The young continued to benefit, but the attitude toward indiscriminate giving had changed. Physical or imagined communities were now more likely to support their own needy.

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RELIGIOUS COMMUNITIES Imagined communities were powerful providers of solidarity through shared religious, ethnic, or geographical identities. A case study of Jewish communities in the West serves to illustrate and unpick some of the ways an imagined solidarity overlaid and complemented other aspects of families’ and children’s community experiences. Migration, assimilation, and intolerance and tolerance are key here to understanding how religious, cultural, and geographical communities intersected. The role of the Enlightenment in promoting religious freedoms in some areas while increasing a sense of exclusivity in others is also significant. While Frederick the Great of Prussia and Joseph II of Austria encouraged tolerance for minority groups, for example (albeit with mixed motives), France’s Louis XIV and the Habsburgs Leopold I and Maria Theresa expelled them. These policies gave religious communities new challenges and opportunities and shaped new patterns of European and more global movement of families and individuals. Even in this era of reason and increasing secularization, religion provided a framework for daily existence and conferred a sense of fellow feeling among co-religionists. For many, membership in the majority religion was one of several aspects of community identity and family life alongside place of residence, kinship, and friends. For minority religious groups like the Jews, however, who frequently lived in restricted areas by design or edict, these different community ties might all map onto the same group of people. Jews were particularly mobile in Western society, and they tended to set up tight networks of community bodies and services wherever they settled. Religious Jews could not use local butchers, for example, because kosher slaughter followed strict religious rules, and, with few long-standing roots in particular geographical areas, these requirements often had to be built up from nothing. Residential separation was further enforced by edicts imposed by some city or state authorities and was often heightened by differences in language. At one end of the scale, therefore, Jewishness was the primary community allegiance for individual families rather than nationality, neighborhood, or socioeconomic standing. At the other end, religion was one among many aspects of self-definition, and an individual’s place on the scale depended very much on geographical location and economic standing. Jews—like other religious groups—were not a homogenous whole. Emigrants from southern Europe (Sephardim), for example, had a heritage of living among Christians and were often quick to make ties outside their own religious community. The migration of northern European Jews (Ashkenazim)

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both east- and westward was of a different character: it was larger in scale, and its participants were often poor and spoke Yiddish. Settlement restrictions played a greater role for these Jews, and expulsions and caps on marriage lent Jewish family life in cities like Prague a degree of instability. Here, the primary sense of solidarity was probably religious rather than geographical, although there was again a spectrum of experience. In London and Amsterdam, Jewish community life was relatively unconstrained although it naturally clustered in certain quarters. Elsewhere, such as Frankfurt and Prague, it was bounded by the remits of a ghetto, making the community peculiarly self-reliant and likely to provide many different functions for the family. Mobility brought some insecurity, but it also created a network of familial and cultural links that were vital to survival and success. It eased the migration of individual families, provided key support and socialization for children, and facilitated the rise to prominence of the highest economic stratum of Jewry via imagined as well as concrete community links. Religious community surveillance and control was strongest where Jews were clustered in ghettos and weaker where they were at least tacitly protected by national laws and freedoms (as in England) or (as in rural Germany) where settlements were small and dispersed. In these locations, synagogue attendance and community ritual and support were still important, but it was harder to exert pressure on individuals and families to conform. The Puritan New England colony at Plymouth illustrates the same point: in a tightly knit community bound to a common religious purpose, surveillance of the family was greater than when the community was dispersed and less distinctive. In the Quaker colony at Pennsylvania, in contrast, there was no formally established faith, and both family and religious matters were intimate and private. The former brought a more explicit sense of shared experience but perhaps also a greater degree of policing morals and behavior; the latter eased integration with other communities but simultaneously posed the risk of dispersing the original one. Some Jewish families in less tightly bounded locations did participate in wider commercial and secular cultures in this period. Richer and better-connected Jewish financiers formed an important part of court culture in German, Austrian, and Dutch cities, and links with co-religionists elsewhere assured the usefulness of Jewish families in provisioning troops in strategic areas like the Alsatian border of France. The court Jews were a tiny elite, but their social position was very elevated, and it opened up a range of social and intellectual circles to them and their families. A few Jewish women—most famously Rahel Levin in Berlin—hosted fashionable salons in mid- to late eighteenth-century

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Berlin and Weimar, and one or two members of the small Jewish Enlightenment (Haskalah) became accepted into wider circles. There were no comparable developments in the intellectual field in Dutch and English Jewry, but some families built up commercial wealth and became socially elevated enough to buy in to a largely secular and gentlemanly culture. Acculturation did not necessarily bring assimilation, however, even when accompanied by conversion to Christianity. Nonetheless, the more acculturated English Jewish families experienced a new style of leisured life, and their children were exposed to a secular education and introduction to the marriage market. In fact, the Anglicization of one’s children was a key marker of assimilation, and the second and subsequent generations of immigrant parents were increasingly less likely to speak Yiddish or wear distinctive costumes. Here, although Judaism might still be part of a family’s identity, it was social, economic, and cultural ties that provided their immediate community. For the vast majority of poverty-stricken Jews in Western Europe, however, this sort of social climbing was simply impossible, and children inherited their parents’ poverty, line of work, and lack of education. Over the course of the period, well-off Jews started to fund schools and charities to help their co-religionists, partly from compassion but also from a desire to shape the image the community projected to those outside it. Here, an imagined community could become a practical one if it had the necessary economic strength and political will. The Jewish community was thus very diverse, but it was tied together by religion and culture as well as geography and economic commonalities. Its members were not equally devout, and they sought assimilation and acculturation to differing degrees. For families in ghettos, the religious community, neighborhood, peer network, and wider kin were one and the same. All children’s socialization, discipline, and culture were derived from a common framework. In cities with more religious freedom, like London and Amsterdam, Jewish families were more likely to live alongside and interact with nonJews. The community was more diverse, and religion was only one part of it—albeit the part that provided the most formal support and training. Jews may be an extreme illustration of the way religious and geographical communities interacted because of their high mobility and specific requirements, but the general point is true for many other religious bodies. Puritans migrating to America, for example, self-consciously set out to establish communities to reinforce religious practice in future generations. They preserved a similar sense of their common origins and frequently referred to English models for family discipline and child rearing as well as community structure, law, and

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even religious training for their ministers. It took many generations for German Protestant settlers in America to abandon using their natal language for religious services in their new American home. Linguistic cohesion was a vital part of their imported community and shared practice, especially in more isolated rural settlements.

CONCLUSION Variety is a fundamental theme to any examination of community in this period. Families lived in settlements at vastly different stages of growth, economic development, and density. Their social ties were variously based on kin, friends, co-religionists, and neighbors depending on individual circumstances. The twin themes of urbanization/industrialization and enlightenment had a particularly distinctive impact on community life in this period in many places either by reshaping its physical landscape or reconceptualizing its theoretical framework. The growth of towns and cities weakened some social bonds and strengthened others, probably diversifying the range of contacts families experienced. Rural areas also widened their connections to markets and suppliers of industrial raw materials, although others experienced depopulation and economic stagnation. Above all, it is clear that communities escape easy categorization over time and space. There were also fundamental differences in the experience of community life according to social status. Any broadening of social ties was probably experienced more fully by the poorer and plebeian sorts, who interacted with economic migrants in the streets, markets, and workplaces. The growth of the middling and upper classes was, if anything, accompanied by a contraction of their family’s wider social ties as an increasing amount of leisure time was spent in the home and with the immediate family group. Schooling provided a more formal set of relationships for these classes, and they were less likely to experience wider community ties via service or shared child care. Families of all classes, however, continued to pass on a gendered view of community relations to their younger members, as they always had, especially in the higher social classes. There, socialization was more sharply demarcated by gender, and girls in particular were exposed to the social scene from an early age. The mid-eighteenth-century diarist and correspondent Frances Boscawen, for example, planned an extensive program of socializing for her daughter, and young girls were prominent among family groups visiting the fashionable English spa town of Bath. Hester Thrale took her daughter Queenie there for

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the first time when the girl was eleven. Community is, by its nature, not formal in its modes of instruction and socialization, and children would have learned by example from their parents and associates. The idea of community—and it is ultimately more of an idea than a concrete phenomenon—thus permits a number of links between some of the most distinctive features of the Enlightenment and the lived experiences of families and children. The Enlightenment set up many of the idealized notions of childhood that would be expanded on by the Romantics, bounded by the Evangelical revival, and ultimately sanctioned by the century of the child after 1900. The growth of the urban and industrial environment set the scene for the enormous change in the landscape after 1800 and its repercussions on child work, family structure, health, and community life. Many of the themes on atomization of kin or community links, secularization, religion, and citizenship that have been introduced here became more pressing, more visible, and more overtly discussed. At the same time, however, communities remained tied to many older values and forms. The Enlightenment itself shaped the idea of community in this period, but urban growth, migration, and industrial development were more distinctive in changing many of the physical locations for the formative experiences of children and their families.

CHAPTER THREE

Economy deborah simonton

Children played a crucial role in Western economies during the Enlightenment. Familial relations underwent significant changes triggered by enlightenment ideas and economic change in ways that influenced how families made decisions about the management of their economies and the deployment of family members. Parents increasingly expected to take a role in bringing up children in ways that were qualitatively and quantitatively different. They invested in their children by purchasing goods and services designed expressly for them and, through inheritance strategies, managed their economies to preserve the family for posterity. Children’s value shifted. At the same time, the Western world believed children should work and not be brought up in idleness. Indeed, enlightenment society was often concerned there was not enough work for children. The story of children and the economy is shaped by an intersection of gender and class. What families expected of children depended on the family’s place in the social structure and on the sex of the child while the kind of work the child could do depended partly on family position but also on locality, availability of work, and the age of the child. Different cultural approaches also circumscribed children’s labor. Native American children did not work in the same way as most colonial or European children. Redeemed white captives reported that boys did not do farm chores like colonial boys, and while girls planted, tended, and harvested corn alongside women, they were allowed to

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work as leisurely as they wished.1 But for the majority of children, work was a part of their childhood. Even most children of the middling classes expected to work but tended to begin older than poorer children. While all children were required to contribute to the economic well-being of the family, girls’ futures operated within a narrower range of opportunities than boys’, and often at different ages. Boys’ greater access to education opened alternative routes into the economic world. Ellin Stout, daughter of an English Quaker ironmonger and grocer, was taken out of school early while her brothers’ education was given higher priority. They expected to set up in business while she was kept at home.2 Class also configured gender difference, however, so that boys and girls of the elite and wealthier classes were less likely to work while young but still played an important role in family strategies. Historical as well as contemporary accounts depicted the child worker in contradictory guises so that the innocence of children was contrasted with the apparent horrors of child labor. The historian faces two problems. First, children worked long hours in difficult conditions both before and after industrialization. Therefore, child labor needs to be contextualized within the family and economic framework. Second, the moralizing tendency, which should have no place in historical accounts, is problematic. Writers by the end of the eighteenth century regularly cast children as innocents, following Rousseau’s footsteps. However, some historians—like Edward Shorter and Lawrence Stone, who argued that parents were uncaring and that children’s lives were of little relative value—measured the treatment of children by a modernization approach situated in contemporary social anxieties.3 Thus, they couched the treatment of children in moral concerns that were largely anachronistic. Such views gave little attention to the circumstances of families that demanded different sets of values and decisions and that were necessary caveats to enlightenment shifts in attitudes toward child care. Since feeding the household was key to family life, mothers’ strategies may have led them to decisions that modernists condemn. If children did not receive the kind of attention today’s world asks, it did not mean parents did not care for them. Servant Louise Brulé put her newborn to nurse because she could not keep him and work. However, she kept in contact with the foster parents and “wanting to see him on account of her feelings as a mother” she requested his return.4 Emotional ties were not essential for family survival, and love and affection were not necessarily opposed to the economic and social purposes of family life even if the latter sometimes appeared of primary importance.

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THE ECONOMY AND SOCIETY Throughout the Enlightenment, enormous changes took place in Western economies. A period of reconstruction coincided with gradual improvements in health, population growth, an increase in trade and commercial agriculture, and the utilization of domestic industries as a means of production. Population remained largely rural, though the growth of towns with their pivotal role in commerce began more and more to shape the economic context. Much of the North American economy was shaped by colonial links with European nations but, importantly, also by the abundance of arable land. English migrations had largely ceased, although others, like Germans, Irish, and Scots, continued to see opportunity in America. Under mercantilism and the benefits of family owner-occupied farms, the colonial lifestyle had become one of the wealthiest in the world; colonial economies outstripped their origin nations, though the colonial lifestyle still contained wide variance between colonies and regions and in personal wealth and economic well-being. The New England colonies, informed by their Puritan origins, developed differently than the middle and southern colonies with their growing reliance on slave labor. Native American populations brought different approaches to family economies, though most northeastern groups adopted a more sedentary agricultural economy than the northern and plains tribes. Europe also showed wide diversity between the landed estates of English and Russian nobility, between the serfs of Eastern Europe and the small farmers of Denmark and Sweden, and between fishing communities in Norway and Portugal. Much of European society remained hierarchical—patterns that reemerged in North America. Several fundamental changes in the economy altered the opportunities and limitations within which people worked. Increased trade and commerce built on but also challenged traditional corporate structures, like guilds. Agriculture shifted to more use of enclosed farms designed to be more efficient and commercial but with a range of tenancy practices. Parts of Eastern Europe continued to use a feudal system of forced labor, which was extended in places like Russia. In states like Sweden and Finland, hired labor acts required people over fifteen to work. Many families and workers were essentially unfree as tied labor, forced labor, serfs, and slaves. A number of landholding practices shaped the Western economies, and, in a very real sense, land was fundamental to how families managed their economies. Partible and impartible inheritance informed family strategies.

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One of the key economic changes was an apparent shift in the relative importance of agriculture and industry. Handicrafts continued to be significant and frequently expanded in the context of increased foreign trade. Growth in domestic manufacture, often organized as “dispersed manufactures,” contributed to shifting the focus from home consumption to increased market production. This form of production spread across the European landscape from the early seventeenth century and from the last half of the eighteenth century in North America. Dispersed manufacture was located in agricultural areas with easy access to local urban and international markets. It usually required a higher degree of organization and larger capitalization, especially supplies of materials, than small-scale handicrafts and tended to take advantage of underutilized rural labor, particularly women and children. Forging networks and urban/rural links, the system proved to be durable and lasted well after other modes of manufacture dominated. Ultimately, more production and processes were collected into “manufactories”—water-powered mills—than in cotton spinning. These structures shaped the world of work, consumption, and investment in ways that affected family practices and decision making.

THE FAMILY AND ITS ECONOMY Children worked and contributed to the family pot. As consumers, they were also a drain on resources. Families anticipated that all members would contribute to the household economy in a variety of ways, and their strategies reflected the presence (or absence) of children. Families were not static entities, and their economic concerns similarly were not fixed. The relation of children to the economy had its own life cycle in that very young children were net consumers. As they grew older and more competent, they had more potential to contribute to that pot. Even children who left home frequently continued to contribute to the family economy. The idea that children could and should work was widespread. Heinrich König, who lived with his domestic worker mother and uncle at the end of the eighteenth century, saw himself as a “vital and active member of the family . . . working and suffering with the others, contributing, if only by means of his apparently insignificant labors, towards the household’s livelihood.”5 The concept of a family economy built around family strategies helped describe the interdependence of family members and the centrality of women’s and children’s labor to a household’s response to economic conditions. Coresidence was not essential since one strategy for balancing household requirements involved apprenticing, hiring out, or sending away children. Similarly,

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families often imported child labor—kin or non-kin—to maintain a gendered division of labor. Numerous people operated throughout the economy in ways that, while compatible with family needs, were not necessarily predicated on a shared work experience or even a shared workplace. Industrial and economic change could alter the patterns and relative importance of families’ economic contributions, but common practices, such as family hiring in domestic industry and agriculture, were sometimes carried into new water-powered factories beginning in the last quarter of the eighteenth century. Children’s relations to the family were never solely dependent on economic considerations, and decision making was not always rational. The family balancing act went beyond production and consumption and took in a range of variables such as labor, leisure, and marital and industrial activities. Increasing reliance on wages probably changed family relationships and affected plebeian responses linked to culture, custom, and control. Other considerations, such as the transmission of culture, played a part. The need for labor affected decision making, but emotion also played a role in shaping strategies for survival. Serf and slave families had very few options. We should not forget that many families did not feel they were making choices. Often, they did what they had to do. Family members related to the family economy as a series of gradations. For example, women could work as assistants to men in a craft; they could work at home at a different trade, contributing to the family income; they could work outside the household to support the family; or they could work in and outside the household to support themselves. Family size and wealth shaped how members contributed. Large farms with adequate hired labor might have managed gendered divisions of labor, but smaller farms often required everyone to turn their hands to anything. Historians have sometimes found less difference in the work of girls and boys than in the work of adults. Opportunities could be different in rural and urban settings—not only because of different types of work but also because of the character of workplace regulation, such as guild strength. Since North America had no guild system, apprenticeship was not as endemic as in Europe. Additionally and importantly, family strategies could be thwarted and modified by compulsory labor systems like slavery, serfdom, and laws requiring labor service, as in Sweden, Saxony, and Denmark. In 1777, six daughters from four Württemberg families were ordered into service by community courts for allegedly causing conflict within their families—one for having beaten her father.6 At the same time, families used indentured service, apprenticeship, and annual service contracts as part of their own strategies.

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THE USES OF SERVICE Forms of service encompassed the earning and learning experience of large numbers of children, though it was more common in northern Europe than the south, and more frequent in Europe than North America. Historians largely described service—farm, domestic, or industrial—as a life-cycle stage used to adjust the labor needs of the household and to enable children to build up the financial requisites to set up on their own. This was undoubtedly true for many young people and shaped their experience of adolescence and how they used this stage in their lives as a recognized period of transition. Service was a common way to manage child labor when families needed or wished to send children away from home, and it was a secure way of supplying semipermanent labor. Importantly, however, large numbers of children never went to either service or apprenticeship. Contemporary usage was highly variable, and service often referred to apprenticeship and even day labor. To William Blackstone, for example, the

FIGURE 3.1: The importance of industry and hard work were epitomized in Hogarth’s

series Industry and Idleness. Notably here in the first plate, the tidiness and moral fiber of the good apprentice compared to the lazy apprentice are already apparent. William Hogarth, The Fellow Apprentices at their Looms, from Rev. John Trusler, The Works of William Hogarth . . . (London: Jones and Co. 1833).

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FIGURE 3.2: Franklin’s Youthful, Industrious Habits, from one of the most famous

American accounts of apprenticeship and the benefits of a strong work ethic, John Bigelow’s Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin (Philadelphia, 1868; illustrated and inlaid by Joseph M. P. and Emily Price, 1887). Courtesy of the Historical Society of Pennsylvania.

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term servant embraced “menial servants; so called from being intra moenia, or domestics” together with apprentices, day or weekly paid workers, and even stewards, factors, and bailiffs who served a master.7 Service was structurally quite variable. Apprenticeship was indentured service—that is, a term of service constrained by legal articles. But, importantly, it was also labor and was often more labor than training. A key feature was that children should learn to be industrious and prepare for adulthood, captured eloquently in William Hogarth’s moral series “Industry and Idleness,” where the idle apprentice succumbed to society’s evils while the industrious apprentice succeeded in the world of men. The importance of industrious behavior was echoed by Defoe, a champion of trade and opponent of idleness: “Boys do not come apprentices to play, but to work; not to sit idle, and be doing nothing, but to mind their master’s business, that they may learn how to do their own.”8 American and European poor-law officials used apprenticeship to send children into service, placing many girls in housewifery but finding apprenticeships for boys. The experience of William Eacock of Harborne demonstrated the fluidity of apprenticeship and the mobility of young workers. At age seven, the Overseers of the Poor bound him to his grandfather, a nailer. At about age ten, his grandfather took him to Mr. Green for three years; at that time, he returned to his grandfather, who took him to a farmer for seven weeks, then to “Mr. Rudge for sixteen weeks” and then to “Mr. Lea at Frankley” for nine months. Then, at fourteen, he “hired himself to a Worcester farmer.”9 In Württemberg, very young children were bound without pay or clothing because they did not have nutz, or utility; they might be paid when they earned their own keep.10 In contrast, domestic and farm servants engaged in verbal contracts, typically of one year. They were paid while apprentices usually were not; masters were expected to provide for them, and they usually coresided—whether there was work or not. They were highly mobile, changing jobs and locations frequently. Marie Catton from Varacieux, Dauphiné, died in Lyons in 1777 having begun as a servante with a satin manufacturer, followed by two years as a maidservant for the priest at Saint-André-en-Bresse, and returning to Lyons again as a servante in satin manufacture. Parents frequently decided when and where their children went. Sally Dawson’s father took her at age nine to Henry and Elizabeth Drinker, a prominent Philadelphia Quaker family; after a fifteenday trial, she was indentured for eight years. Like apprentices, she was to receive “meat, drink, linen and washing” and six months training in the “art, craft and mystery of housewifery.”11 Children also hired themselves out, as we have seen in the case of William Eacock.

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American indentured service drew on these traditions. Many young people served from four to seven years in return for their passage and the possibility of gaining skills and land on completion. George Mittelberger, a Württemberg schoolteacher who went to Pennsylvania, wrote of German immigrants selling their children into service “like so many head of cattle” so they could leave the ship free of debt. He commented, with clear distaste, that it “often happens that such parents and children . . . do not see each other again for many years, perhaps no more in all their lives.” Also, children were kidnapped and taken to America without their parents’ collusion. Peter Williamson, a tenant farmer’s son from Aberdeen, Scotland (and the model for R. L. Stevenson’s novel, Kidnapped), was taken and later commented, “It was not carried on in secret or by stealth, but publicly and by open violence.” They were “driven through the country like cattle to a Smithfield market, and exposed to sale in public fairs, as so many beasts.”12 His experience was not unique. Individuals and governments of the Old World used indentured servitude to get rid of orphans and paupers. Similarly, the colonies regularly encouraged youths to come to the New World. Not all went to agriculture; ironworks took servants for mining, smelting, and forging. At its height, perhaps seventeen percent of immigrants, many of them children, were indentured. Sometimes, unmarried, abandoned, or widowed Native American mothers bound themselves and their children to white families; a missionary minister reported in 1730, “There is scarcely an Indian Boy among us not indebted to an English master.”13 Children experienced service in various ways, therefore, depending on the structure of service, their age, what was expected of them, and how it related to familial obligations. Slavery was the epitome of coerced service, and, from the outset, child slaves were numerous. The slave population grew younger as the colonial slave population reproduced itself, encouraged by masters who realized that owning more slave children increased their wealth. A fifteen-year-old African, Eve, was put into slavery at the end of the eighteenth century by her father as compensation for a theft he had committed, and a significant number of African girls were enslaved as collateral for debt. Relatively few slaves lived in family units, and as late as 1790 only thirty percent in South Carolina appeared to do so. Families were always at risk of being broken up due to masters’ debts, death, transfer between properties, or sale. Youths were especially vulnerable to sale once they reached a useful age, though Steven Mintz refers to a one-and-a-half-year-old, known as Stephen, who was taken from his mother.14

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INFANCY Family structure shaped how labor was deployed, and stem and nuclear families experienced varied labor demands as people came and went and members aged. But the basic flow of time, centered on the child, had resonance throughout all family forms. Most contemporaries, while recognizing life-cycle stages, rarely labeled them. Four periods roughly corresponded to a work life cycle. During infancy, children were least likely to be put to work; during childhood, they began to assist families and take on small chores. Youth corresponded to the point at which boys and girls began apprenticeships, service, or other paid work, and young adulthood was when they increasingly became independent. Society recognized children as net consumers in their first years of life, up to between five and seven years old, while small children in the household altered the family economy. When a couple formed a new household—assuming they brought sufficient resources, like labor, skills, or dowries, to the union—the family economy should have been self-sufficient. Children tended to arrive in the first few years of marriage, and mothers had to decide how to ration their activities since inevitably small mouths in the household took time and energy. Whether or not newborns were born live or survived infancy, pregnancy also affected mothers’ work. Children needed feeding, clothing, housing, and tending; families not only lost some of the mother’s work, but there was also a greater drain on family resources. Clearly, subsistence was less of an issue in well-off families, where servants usually assisted. Indeed, mothers may not have been actively engaged in income-generating labor, though it is dangerous to assume many women led leisured lives.

CHILDHOOD As children grew, and as more were born into the household, they gradually took on small, undemanding tasks around age six or seven. They tended younger siblings, ran errands, carried messages, and picked stones from fields. Parents also expected them to take more responsibility for themselves. When Czech girl Magdalene Rettigová (1785–1845) turned five, her mother said “From now on you will only have what you knit yourself; you are big enough!”15 Nevertheless, children continued to be a drain on family resources for some years. When they could be pressed into work varied depending on the family occupation, with evidence suggesting that in crafts and domestic industry they contributed earlier and more effectively than in agriculture because the same level of strength was not required. More Zurich textile workers’ children worked during childhood than farmers’ or craftsmen’s children.

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Children’s and women’s work were intertwined, but the children’s upbringing was encompassed within women’s productive role. Younger family members remained with mothers, who passed on skills while they cared for their children. From an early age, children, especially girls, were expected to assist mothers by performing simple but necessary tasks that grew more complex as they grew older, more able, and more experienced. Rural six- or seven-year-old boys assisted fathers in the fields, planting or mending fences; girls helped with cooking, cleaning, looking after the barnyard, and making candles. Northeastern Indian children helped mothers in cultivating; weeding and harvesting corn, squash, and beans; and gathering nuts, berries, and fruits. Boys, however, soon graduated to men’s work of hunting “squirrels, birds and even raccoon with their bows and arrow,” while girls learned “cooking, breadmaking . . . making of carrying-girdles and bags.”16 American slaves began regular work earlier than most children and could be inducted into adult labor by age ten. Former slave Smart Edward Walker remembered, “When I was about four years of age I was put to work doing little chores around the house, and when I was ten I worked in the corn field with the grown-up slaves and my brother, who was older than me.” A ten-yearold girl who waited at the mistress’s table was so small “that she had to stand on a little bench in order to reach the top of the table. Later she did housework, sewing, and cooking, and acted as nurse to the children in the plantation family.”17 Young slaves commonly began with work in the house and moved into the fields as they gained strength. While young, they were also most likely to still be with their mothers, if not in a family unit. In any case, children were rarely fully employed and had free time for much of their childhood. Between tasks, they played games, raced, and climbed trees or, as Samuel Bamford from near Manchester explained, “in summer days, we spent much of our time out of doors, digging holes in the sand . . . wading up the stream, maybe laying hold of a trout now and then.”18 The relative freedom of the streets was important to town children, as Karl Friedrich Klöden described: “During the day in the streets, in the barracks’ square, in the passages and corridors or indoors we played and romped according to the season and the weather.”19 Since agricultural work was seasonal, winter found families with far less to do, so between about ages seven to fourteen school attendance was much more common in winter. Schools, wishing to stress the need for industriousness, often required working as part of the curriculum, particularly for girls. Schools in Staffordshire and Essex commonly set girls to sewing, knitting, or cleaning while some school trustees, like Chelmsford Charity School, only set boys to work “from time to time” picking stones or cleaning the town.20

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However, with the growth of protoindustries, industrial work for children increased, and they assisted from a young age with regular work possible as early as six. Many families operated domestic production as by-industries associated with farming. Industries were not seasonal and could therefore utilize labor as long as demand existed. Children, like adults, were deployed as required. Textiles were the classic protoindustries, especially woolens—children helped clean and card wool; mothers, older sisters, and sometimes boys spun; and men usually wove, assisted by sons. This nominal pattern, of course, manifested great variety, but the division of labor employed children of all ages, usually at ancillary tasks until they were old enough to take on adult jobs. Industry offered a regularity of work not found in either handicrafts or agriculture. Therefore, family production units utilized all hands in silk weaving in Spain, Italy, France, Germany, and England; in woolens in Württemberg, Yorkshire, and Philadelphia; and in shoemaking in England and Massachusetts. The variety of commercial production was enormous—from nails, pins, and buckles to braids, straw plaits, and stockings in Scandinavia, Britain, France, and North America, even maple syrup in New Hampshire.

YOUTH Children remained net consumers until between fourteen and eighteen, when they began to work their own passage, so to speak. Fourteen was the common age to enter apprenticeship and service; many compulsory systems in Nordic and Germanic Europe recognized fifteen as the age by which children should be working, while slave children were most vulnerable to sale during youth since they increased in value as they became useful. Apprenticeship and service acknowledged that children were preparing for adult roles, not that they were fully fledged adults. Defoe believed apprentices were “but boys; to talk to them in their first three or four years signifies nothing.”21 The Swedish Estates of Peasantry exempted youths from poll taxes until the age of eighteen because younger children “were not of such strength or efficiency that they would be of any particular service or would earn anything special of the sort that would be needed for the payment of the poll tax.”22 Ann Kussmaul found that many boys aged fourteen earned less than one-fifth of a male wage while those aged fifteen earned two-fifths.23 Thus, only in their late teens did children’s labor begin to equal that of adults; only then did they gain nutz. It was unusual to leave home before age ten, while the number of children aged ten to twenty-one remaining at home bore a strong relation to the opportunities for work at home. For example, most middling and elite children

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expected to reside with their families until marriage, except perhaps when boarding at school. Olwen Hufton suggested that French town girls were less likely to leave home for work than their country cousins because they expected to work in family businesses.24 This also depended on sex. The Statistical Account for Aberdeenshire, Scotland, where spinning and stocking knitting were important, noted “while most of our [girls] remain at home, many of our young men emigrate to other places.”25 Thus, the process of leaving home was variable and gradual. Children’s agricultural work paralleled their parents’ or masters’ tasks, and boys worked in the fields and shared herding jobs with men. Single females in well-off rural families assisted their mothers in cultivating gardens and looking after fruit, vegetables, poultry, and small livestock. Female servants in northeast Scotland were “in and out” girls, undertaking kitchen, dairying, and general farm work. Daughters and servants often worked alongside a mother or mistress, and their work mirrored hers in its diffused character. On poorer farms, however, girls, like their brothers, were likely to work in the fields, and both boy and girls did so during haymaking and harvest. In regions requiring labor service, children frequently contributed one to three days a week. Important agricultural developments such as new crops, changes in hand tools, and the enclosure of farms affected children’s work, reflecting the gendered divisions of labor experienced by adults. As service declined in favor of hired labor, girls were more likely to lose their positions since males gained the permanent jobs while females became more involved in family and casual labor. Also, farming operated a gendered division of labor. Haymaking, hoeing, harrowing, winnowing, planting, and spreading manure were usually associated with females in records from Germany, Scotland, and England. In Norway, women sowed grain because farmers believed it ensured a bigger harvest. In grape-growing areas of France and Italy, women trimmed young vines in early summer. North American female colonists usually did not work in the fields, whereas Native American women were completely responsible for agricultural production. Boys usually worked in fields with men and large animals, plowing, fencing, and carting—tasks associated with male strength and male space.26 Native American boys adopted male gender roles and left the fields to hunt. Children had worked in handicrafts for centuries as assistants in household workshops, learning skills and advancing; sons were expected to join fathers and take over the family enterprise. Boys comprised the vast majority of apprentices, reflecting important gender difference in that the majority of the honorable trades were male dominated and perceived in terms of status. The gendered differentiation of trades meant that girls with high premiums

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found their way to female work. Boys also dominated the middle range of respectable trades while girls were involved in those requiring less skill, training, and prestige. Nevertheless, girls often assisted in family workshops as virtual apprentices to their mothers. Thus, as Hufton explained, “The washerwoman’s daughter almost automatically became a washerwoman, the seamstress’s daughter a seamstress and so on.”27 Significantly, some children were deliberately apprenticed within families, though many were not. Not only did this practice reflect trade networks, it also demonstrated another approach to the family economy—keeping children in the family. Guild structures and apprenticeship regulations did not apply exclusively to towns or skilled trades. Protoindustries might use apprenticeship to acquire child labor, partly because of the traditional association of apprenticeship to youth and partly because some domestic industries were long-standing trades, like weaving and metalworking. In Närke, Sweden, from the sixteenth century, the firearms trade remained a domestic industry—each smith had one apprentice, usually his son, and sons under fifteen were assistants. Thus, by the time they turned fifteen, boys had learned the trade and were ready to go into service as required by the Hired Labor Act. Protoindustries could use apprenticeship as a barrier; this could be seen in the Nagold valley, where rural guilds insisted on apprenticeship, limited the number of apprentices, and required fathers to apprentice their own sons. In Württemberg, even agricultural activities, like shepherd’s guilds, could be organized as handwerk (craft).28 Children also worked as free family labor in protoindustries and crafts, increasingly taking on adult tasks as they became more experienced. Families usually did not pay daughters who worked at home, regarding the acquisition of skills as sufficient recompense. Increasingly, however, some apprenticeships allowed payment in the final years or payment in kind on completion. Sometimes, children were presented with their own tools. Other working arrangements existed in Zurich where children moved into Rast arrangements with parents—parents set weekly tasks that children carried out in return for their keep, but the children could produce more than agreed and keep the excess.29

YOUNG ADULTHOOD The final period was when more and more children separated from the family economy. They may have continued to contribute to the family pot or concentrated on saving for their own homes. Birth order and inheritance affected these decisions. Inheritance was a strategy for balancing the economy and preserving family resources as well as making provision for children. Heirs were

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more likely to remain on farms and in producer households, providing for other siblings. Nonheirs often left to make their own way in the world. In America, younger sons frequently migrated to frontier areas. Where impartible inheritance operated, marriage could be risky for men who did not inherit and so was often avoided. In some parts of Austria, eldest sons hired younger siblings as servants. The potential for intergenerational and sibling rivalry was palpable as children waited for parents to die or retire and as children jockeyed for their portions.30 American fathers tended to retain control of most of their property until death to protect themselves and their widows. Young people could remain dependent well into adulthood. Wives also often inherited so that children remained under parental control long after adulthood. Since primogeniture did not operate in America, parents made provisions for their children through gifts and inheritance, including dowries for daughters or buying a farm to bring to marriage. As parents aged or died, and as children formed their own families often separate from their birth household, the family shrank in economic terms. If the family economy was successful, adequate resources to support elderly parents could have been accumulated. But in vast numbers of poor families, the elderly, especially women, became dependant either on children or state systems for relief.

THE MIDDLING CLASSES: PROFESSIONS, TRADE, AND COMMERCE Class and hierarchy operated across the Western world—even in North America as colonial societies matured. Landed families and prosperous farmers managed their estates and expected their children to take part in this process. Heirs were trained to take over, and American planters’ sons served as messengers and shared their fathers’ business trips from their early teens. One traveler commented, “A Virginia youth of fifteen years is already such a man as he will be at twice that age,” though he finished by saying that “he does nothing else [than rioting around the countryside].”31 Younger sons went to other occupations, perhaps the ministry or military, or learned skills to run their own farms. In Russia, noble sons owed universal military service from about age fourteen onward. A military academy for noble youths between thirteen and eighteen opened in St. Petersburg in 1731, while sons of impoverished noble families could be sent at nine or ten to new military boarding schools in France.32 These families were most likely to invest in their sons’ education to prepare them for literate society and commerce or professions. While their working life cycle reflected the aforementioned in its main outlines, middling and elite

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parents were more likely to protect their children and delay their entry to work. But these children did work. Benjamin Boddington was taken into his father’s counting house at fourteen, and, at twenty, he went to the Levant to represent his father. Professions grew rapidly in the eighteenth century and provided an aristocracy of work that appealed especially to middling parents, offering what Margaret Hunt has described as “a level of prestige seldom attained by men of commerce and a powerful commitment to hard work, usefulness and ‘rationality.’”33 Girls’ situations already prefigured the bourgeois woman of the nineteenth century. We saw how Ellin Stout was taken out of school early to look after her siblings so her mother could work on the farm and in the household. Her brothers received resources to set them up for adulthood: the eldest got the family farm while the younger received a parcel of land and an apprenticeship. Ellin received a dowry of £80, but the family decided her health would not permit her to marry so she kept house for her brother and worked in his shop. Hunt speculated that the potential loss of her labor power to the family was a strong reason to dissuade her from marrying.34 Girls did undertake paid employment, sometimes defying family to do so. For many, the needle provided a living, and middling girls learned to sew at home or in schools, and many became apprentices with the opportunity of a good trade as milliners or mantua makers. High-class milliners pepper the records from Essex and Staffordshire in England to ancien régime France, northern Germany, Spain, and New England. Daughters went to numerous trades, many in foodstuffs, selling, and sewing, and earned enough to warrant insuring their businesses.

THE CONSUMING CHILD Children were net consumers for the best part of their first fifteen years, but during the Enlightenment they became a new sort of purchaser. More emotional involvement with children was accompanied by tangible changes in their treatment and position in the family, manifested in increased expenditure, especially discretionary expenditure. This consumerism was a combination of the increasing revaluation of children, rising standards of living, and the proliferation of more commercial goods. New purchasing power touched all classes, expanded the market for products, and, in turn, created more work. Wealth was a factor, and middling and elite families were more likely to have the money and the luxury of spending it on their children. The growth in children’s literature; the promotion of education; changes in clothing; and an increase in the production of toys, other child-oriented artifacts, and leisure activities demonstrated this familial investment in children. Karin Calvert’s research on

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material culture shows that through their patterns of consumption, colonial American families adopted these new ideas of childhood. For example, girls’ clothes shifted from miniature replicas of their mothers’ outfits to simple muslin dresses while their hair became simpler, shorter, and “childlike.”35 Embedded in ideas of social difference, education was a key feature of the increasing expenditure on children. Along with a sense of industrial improvement and a feeling of growing prosperity, social aspirations governed the actions of wide sections of society. Not surprisingly, education was an important vehicle of social elevation and emulation. For the commercial classes and probably skilled artisans, J. H. Plumb identified a steady growth in educational facilities from 1700 to 1770, with a very rapid increase afterward, including a plethora of day schools throughout villages and towns. In the surge of academies and boarding schools, teaching was intended to create Locke’s social man and concentrated on commercial and social subjects such as writing, arithmetic, drawing, dancing, and music. Schools often offered French, accounts,

FIGURE 3.3: A Little Pretty Pocket-Book inaugurated learning through amusement,

combining moral lessons with child-friendly stories, rhymes, and pictures. Pages from A Little Pretty Pocket-Book, originally published in 1742 by John Newbery, London. This copy from the pirated Worcester, Massachusetts, edition, published by Isaiah Thomas, 1787.

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surveying, or navigation.36 There were clear indications in towns like Wolverhampton “that classical instruction is little needed by the mass of inhabitants of a manufacturing and trading town.” In 1785, parents took sons from the grammar school “finding the system of education to be such as did not suit their station in life.”37 The new curriculum clearly aimed at providing young men with careers and future prospects. A striking rise in the literature about and for children similarly heralded a shift in cultural attitudes toward children. Books—including woodcuts, riddles, and short poems to pique the fancy—became more interesting and therefore aimed at novice readers. The London publisher John Newbery pioneered the genre in 1744 with A Little Pretty Pocket-Book, following it with over two hundred titles that, like Isaac Watts’s and Madame de Genlis’s stories and poems, were regularly reprinted on both sides of the Atlantic. This trade was significant in the emergence of consumer society. Enlightenment ideas from Locke onward encouraged children’s reading while publishers recognized possible profit. Popular books could generate forty-two percent profit compared

FIGURE 3.4: Boys and girls were expected to be well-behaved and “obliging,” but there

were subtle differences in the values to be attained as indicated in these pages from A Little Pretty Pocket-Book, which emphasized the boy’s learning and the girl’s modesty.

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to religious tracts. As Gillian Avery commented, “It was the mind and the person of the child of the educated classes that the book trade bestirred itself to improve according to the best modern theories; that was where the money lay.”38 Thus, an increase and change in material goods emerged as did more attention to the display of children. More child portraits were commissioned from artists like Hogarth, Raeburn, Reynolds, Vigée Le Brun, De Greuze, and Chardin in which children were depicted as relaxed and innocent. Hogarth projected the epitome of cheerful, playing children in his portrait of the Graham children. Similarly, literature like Blake’s and Wordsworth’s championed the innocent, also fueling the commercial market for goods and possessions. But this provision for the child consumer existed on a social chasm. Middling and elite families were likelier to buy books, paintings, and education because they had the money as well as the inclination.

CHILDREN ALONE The apparent stability of family life was, however, misleading since many parents did not live to see their children grow up, children died, and circumstances led to patterns of marriage and remarriage that shaped a variety of family forms. Nor could all people marry and create families due to imbalanced sex ratios; this occurred initially in the middle American colonies or among slaves who were subject to sale. Children were often important contributors to the family economy; however, they were also burdens and often more a handicap than an advantage. The number of deserted children in times of distress suggested they were frequently the most expendable. Some who went to service at very young ages may have had no home to leave, having been abandoned or orphaned. The death of a parent, especially a father, was decisive for many in leaving home and was when many would enter a workhouse for the poor. Because society held the view that children should not dawdle in idleness, institutional approaches to compelling children to work persisted throughout the Western world. Indeed, these establishments acted as a clearinghouse for unemployed children such that Leyden cloth makers imported some eight thousand young workers between 1638 and 1671. Strategies included military conscription, orphanages, houses of correction, foundling hospitals, poorhouses, industry schools, and even day schools that set work. The compulsion to put children to useful work was so strong that younger children could be refused admittance, as at the Ospedale di Carità in Turin, which only accepted children over age seven since younger ones were useless.39

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REFLECTIONS Children of all classes and conditions were central to family strategies. Children’s labor was based on a number of considerations that shifted as children moved through their work life cycle. Though they remained net consumers for most of their childhood, children’s flexibility and mobility enabled families to operate a range of strategies utilizing various forms of labor and service to adjust to family needs. Children needed to accumulate experience and knowledge in order to become useful adults, and, during this process, they became important contributors to the family economy. Their input, even when young, helped families maintain an equilibrium and, as the family unit matured, hopefully achieve a level of success. Children also acquired skills and knowledge and utilized networks created by families and occupations. While young, they had relatively little independence and choice, and some slave and serf children probably had none, although tales of running away did suggest another option. As children moved through their work life cycle, they hoped to gain a degree of independence, and ultimately they separated from the economy of their birth to form their own families, though familial links could remain strong and central to their adult lives. Class and gender affected the range and types of choice children may have had and influenced the paths their economic lives took. Child labor was less relevant in well-off families where childhood and youth operated more as stages of learning rather than earning. However, boys especially were expected to turn these periods to profit as adults who followed their fathers’ footsteps or undertook their own farms or businesses. Girls of all classes usually expected their lives to mirror the lives of their mothers, with career opportunities circumscribed by gendered ideas of what females should do. Like boys, they worked as children and youths and prepared for adult life but usually within socially inscribed roles. Children of the Enlightenment were working children, and for many the work was hard—sometimes too hard—but most families regarded it as essential. Industry and avoiding idleness were important characteristics to acquire. Work was seen as a positive good and permeated social perceptions of childhood. The Enlightenment also brought new ideas of children and consumption into play, fostering an economy based on purchasing for children. Increasing consumption reflected the development of an ideologically more child-oriented society, though the reality took longer to percolate throughout society. Thus, throughout the period, children operated as key members of family economies as workers, consumers, and family members.

CHAPTER FOUR

Geography and the Environment giorgio riello

The saying “one is born naked and dies naked” hides the fact that material possessions are an important part of people’s lives. In the eighteenth century, birth, more than any other personal trait, was a key criteria defining one’s position in society and determining one’s aspirations. Not everyone was born as part of a family or necessarily expected to be raised in one. The history of the marginalized—the unwanted, the vagabonds, the lunatics, the sick, and those who in French are called people sans feu, sans lieu, sans aveu—can be recovered with difficulty. To be without a family at birth was in the early modern world a near death sentence. Among the most moving documents of the eighteenth-century material world are the Foundling Hospital’s registers of the children left to its care between 1741 and 1800. The name of the child was entered and his or her clothing was itemized.1 In approximately three thousand cases, a piece of fabric cut from an item of clothing such as a sleeve, a ribbon, or a cap was left by the parent(s) as a token that subsequently could be used to identify the child. This is an invaluable archive of impossible families testifying to the rupture of familial bonds in the face of adverse personal conditions. These artifacts, together with those on display at the Coram’s Fields Museum, are a reminder that family life was not necessarily taken for granted.

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At the opposite end of the social scale, the celebrated Graham Children painted by Hogarth in 1742 belonged to a wealthy household.2 Although they lived only a few miles from the Coram’s Fields hospital, their material environment was one of comfort and luxury as shown in their clothing, furnishing, and abundance of toys.3 As Anthony Fletcher has shown in his analysis of diaries of children from wealthy families, children’s everyday life was structured around the home, where boys were imparted with classical training and girls were taught manners, music, drawing, and embroidery.4 The end of childhood was likewise signaled by rituals of passage within the family: it could mean access to dining with one’s parents; wearing breaches and boots; or, for the most privileged, formal presentation at court.5 The experience of children shows how materiality was used to negotiate one’s position within or in relation to a family. Young working men spent a great deal of money to make themselves look respectable. This was necessary not just to get a job but also in meeting a perspective wife. Girls were busy accumulating dowries in the form of household linen and apparel to provide the material to set up a new household. Individuals did not follow rules of hedonic satisfaction but used material belonging in strategic ways, often considering their own position within existing and future familial contexts. Material possessions could also be useful as insurance: pawning one’s belongings was not rare and could provide food or pay the rent when all other avenues were closed.6 This explanation for the role of material belongings in people’s lives has been marginalized for a long time in favor of an overall narrative of material change in the age of enlightenment based on consumption. In the early 1980s, Neil McKendrick proposed the notion of a “consumer revolution” based on the fact—in his own words—that “a greater proportion of the population than in any previous society in human history was able to enjoy the pleasures of buying consumer goods.”7 This happened because cheaper products became available in a society that was flexible enough to allow goods to be used to enhance one’s social status.8 Central to McKendrick’s explanation is the concept of emulation (the aping of the consumer habits of the socially superior) that he borrowed from Veblen’s The Theory of the Leisured Class (1899). Consumer goods are markers of social prestige and status as their meaning is social rather than personal or familial. McKendrick’s explanation of the mechanisms of consumption was too focused on the role of the individual and somewhat teleological toward modern consumerism.9 However, McKendrick himself emphasized the role of household relations in creating and structuring desire and emulation by attributing a key role to servants. Fifteen percent of the population was servants, constituting

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a considerable part of society. Servants were members of and normally lived in their master’s households. Their disposable income was therefore high as they did not have to pay for food or lodgings. Servants could indulge in conspicuous consumption more than any other laboring class by purchasing goods at shops such as tailors, milliners, clothiers, and so forth. At the same time, they were also in close proximity to the upper levels of society. They often wore the discarded clothes of their masters or mistresses and were walking adverts for the populace of the previous, if not the latest, season’s fashion. The necessity to consider the individual’s consumption within his or her set of social relations is also evident in the ways in which one contemporary tried to analyze the social structure and consumer behavior first of his own family and from there the entire English nation in 1690. Gregory King, one of the first modern statisticians, accounted for the expenditure of the nation by calculating the budgets of families. He started with his own family, showing not so much the material conditions in which they lived but what was added every year. Food, apparel, fire and candle, soap and starch, mops and brooms, table linen, repairs for bedding and hangings, and so forth were all itemized person by person.10 Ideal households of different sizes ranged from the 40 members of an aristocratic household to the 7 of a yeoman’s family and the 3.25 of a laborer’s.11 National expenditure was, for King, the result of the choices of individuals mediated by their belonging to a family. Most of the models used in the analysis of eighteenth-century material culture tend to be positivistic in the sense that they explain why and what people consumed by analyzing their wishes and choices. Historians have recently been

FIGURE 4.1: Gregory King’s family budget.

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critical of this approach. John Styles, for instance, claims that many in the eighteenth century did not have much choice. Drawing on research by Tim Hitchcock and Steven King on the role of the poor in eighteenth-century urban and rural environments, Styles proposes a model of “involuntary consumption.”12 Some forms of consumption do not tell us much about choice or personal taste or even material aspirations. Styles supports his explanation by showing how a high percentage of the population did not own their own houses.13 This was not true just for Britain: in Paris, ninety percent of wage earners were tenants, and the same could be said of at least two-thirds of servants.14 These people had little agency in choosing their own material possessions and creating their own spaces. The issue of agency (how much people are in charge of their own material environment) has also been raised in relation to things a person might acquire

FIGURE 4.2: A quintessential example of those people living in rented rooms in the eighteenth century. “The distressed poet,” at work in his garret, is interrupted by a milkmaid demanding payment. Print from William Hogarth, 1737. Guildhall Library Print Room, Hogarth Collection, 29, p5438250.

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outside the circuits of the marketplace. One accumulated objects during one’s lifetime, and their dispersal at the end of one’s life had profound meaning. Laurel Thatcher Ulrich has compellingly shown how objects were key to creating connections across individuals, families, and communities in colonial America both through inheritance and giving gifts during one’s life.15 Bequeathing personal possessions also signaled different ways of relating to material things. Maxine Berg’s study of wills for eighteenth-century Birmingham and Sheffield reveals that while women were more keen to bequeath clothing, jewels, linen, china, silver, and other consumer goods, men preferred to leave stock, shop goods, and tools of a more functional value.16 Sandra Cavallo expands on this gendered analysis by highlighting how consumer goods, especially those strictly linked to the person, had a function within the dynamics of the family. Widowhood, for instance, meant in most cases the woman and mistress of the house lost most of the material possessions that had characterized her married life. Personal property (clothing, jewels, and other things of less value) remained as insurance in the same way her dowry had allowed her to enter into marital life.17

THE MATERIAL CULTURE OF THE HOUSE The overlap between a family, a household, the physical space of a house, and the emotional and social space of a home is critical to understanding the peculiar nature of Western European family history. As other chapters in this volume underline, Western Europe—and later North America—were characterized by nuclear families composed of a couple, their children, and, more rarely, grandparents. Each family, as in the case of Jacob Gerritsz Cuyp’s Portrait of Abel Tasman, His Wife, and Daughter, was supposed to be identified by the space of a house. The opposite was also true: the space of a house created familial bonds and transformed the physical nature of a building into a sense of belonging—the concept of home. It is difficult to pinpoint with precision the key items that were indispensable for the life of a family. Pots and pans and other implements for cooking and eating were surely key priorities, though cooked food, especially in urban areas, could easily be acquired at inns or from street sellers. A house could not be said to be a home without basic furniture such as tables, benches, and, increasingly in this period, chairs and stools. Textiles, too, were necessities as they formed the accoutrement for the bed and were omnipresent as table cloths, sheets, and blankets.18 The presence of these objects was, however, insufficient to create domesticity. Another key criterion is how the space in which

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FIGURE 4.3: Portrait of Abel Tasman, His Wife and Daughter, attributed to Jacob Ger-

ritsz Cuyp, ca. 1637. Oil on canvas; 106.7  321.1 cm. National Library of Australia, Rex Nan Kivell Collection NK3.

objects were located functioned to foster familial bonds, structure gender relations, and configure power hierarchies among family members. The profusion of textiles, for instance, was not just a sign of wealth and prosperity; it was also the material manifestation of a woman’s duty to both take care of domestic furnishings and often produce new ones with which to decorate domestic spaces. The expression oeconomy (meaning, in this time, “management of a household”) put the wife and mother in charge of the material well-being of the entire family.19 This is why Manderville was convinced that the wife played “a fundamental role in determining whether a family was respectable or non-respectable.”20 Late seventeenth-century Dutch paintings show the omnipresent Linnenkast, a chest for the family linen that the mistress of the house had to manage, ensuring yearly rotation of stock, its keeping and mending, and the management of servants’ work in taking care of what was seen as a financial and emotional family asset.21 The bedroom contained the most textiles. The bed

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was not just a piece of furniture but also part of the furnishing of a house. In poorer dwellings it could dominate the little space available, but in more affluent households it was a treasured item: the bed was not just a place of conception, birth, death, love, and rest but also one of the most expensive items in the house, often being furnished with rich textiles such as damasks, silks, and, later in the eighteenth century, cottons.22 Other spaces, such as the kitchen, remained central to family life, but their nature and function changed over time. The kitchen’s fireplace was, in many cases, the only one in a house and was therefore the core of family life: a place of food, conviviality, and warmth. Between the early sixteenth and the end of the seventeenth century, the central open hearth that had characterized medieval houses gave way to side fireplaces, normally with a chimney. Thanks to this innovation, the kitchen, especially in middle-class households, increasingly

FIGURE 4.4: Interior with Ladies by a Linen Cupboard by Pieter de Hooch, 1663. Oil on canvas, 72  77.5 cm. Rijksmueum, Amsterdam.

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became the specialized space for cooking, leaving entertainment and socialization to other spaces in the house.23 Nancy Cox has detailed how cooking and the implements of cooking changed dramatically as a consequence of the demise of the central hearth. While central fires allowed only one large pot—normally of boiling water—smaller lateral hearths allowed for more specialized activities such as roasting and stewing.24 The modern European diet and the presence of a variety of implements such as kettles, pots and pans, saucepans, stew pans, fish kettles, and teakettles were the result of this innovation.25 The spatial specialization of cooking within the confines of a space that we still call a kitchen was part of a wider series of changes in the layout of seventeenth- and eighteenth-century houses. Studies based on inventories and archaeological evidence show how rooms assumed more specialized uses. It was not uncommon in middle-class urban dwellings to start differentiating between the chamber, the parlor, the kitchen, and the bedroom.26 Each room was designated for specific social activities that took place at different times during the day or were characterized by different uses according to gender and age. A minimum of flexibility across the various rooms was, however, required. This was particularly true of eighteenth-century New England where the hall (otherwise called the dwelling room or outward room) functioned as the center of family life but was also used for entertaining. The parlor functioned instead as a more intimate space where family looms and delicate textiles were kept safe from intruders and the peril of fire.27 The specialization of rooms and the increasing complexity of the spatial structuring of a house—with corridors, halls, multiple staircases, and so forth—was not just the result of higher standards of living. The majority of the population lived in crammed conditions. However, those who could afford it showed their civility by spatially compartmentalizing daily activities. As Nicholas Cooper has aptly demonstrated in the case of seventeenth-century England, the articulation of the domestic space allowed not just better regulation of one’s activities but also a clearer distinction between what were perceived as public and private spaces.28 This meant also the increasing relegation of service activities to the basement, often linked to the areas of socialization by a separate set of stairs. One can say that the upstairs/downstairs divide was first and foremost functional and meant the end of the notion of family inclusive of servants. Servants became physically separated from their masters, eventually leading to the end of the living-in system. It was not just the space of rooms and their articulation that changed. Furniture also changed profoundly in the course of the long eighteenth century. The period up to the early seventeenth century had been dominated by

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furniture belonging to the category of fixtures: benches, beds, and wardrobes were integral parts of the house and were often built into the physical structure of the building. The second half of the seventeenth century saw instead a move toward free-standing pieces of furniture: chairs, small tables, and chests of drawers were smaller and easier to move and expressed a new culture of individualism well fitted to the functional specialization of room use. The second great invention of the period was the development of upholstered furniture.29 The communal bench gave way to individual stools and chairs, which were often upholstered and valued for their comfort. The modern notion of comfort was indeed minted in this period. It emerged from the interplay between ergonomics and the acculturation of the body to new objects such as soft furnishing.30 In the words of John Crowley, eighteenth-century people “gave the term ‘comfort’ a new physical emphasis as they re-conceptualized values, redesigned material environments, and urged the relearning of behaviors.”31 From its original meaning of personal self-satisfaction and moral rectitude, comfort became a term that gave voice to a newfound sense of material want. Analyses that underline the novelty of household objects in shaping family lives and spaces underplay important continuities. The houses of most eighteenth-century people both in Europe and, perhaps more surprisingly, in the American colonies were full of objects belonging to previous generations. Today, the life cycle of possessions tend to be much shorter than in the past. In the early modern period, it was not uncommon to inherit chairs, cushions, pictures, and decorations that were treasured not just as heirlooms but also for their intrinsic value. Some of these objects, as wills reveal, were handed down with the specific intention of creating a memory of the deceased and establishing lineage. Laurel Thatcher Ulrich shows that in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries this happened not just in wealthy families—as one today might inherit an ancestors’ castle—but also in relatively humble ones.32 The very concept of patina, by which an old object is classified as antique, emerged during the Enlightenment and came to identify objects whose artistic and emotional value allowed people to treasure them more than newly acquired items.33

THE MATERIAL CULTURE OF DOMESTIC LIVING Today we take for granted that family life is based on emotional bonds expressed through love and affection, the nurturing of children, or the grieving of the dead. Our vision of the use of domestic space is symptomatic of a rather specialized notion of the purpose of a family. Figure 4.5 suggests instead that

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FIGURE 4.5: The domestic space as an area of production, consumption, and meaning.

houses and families in the premodern world were units of production, consumption, and sentiments.34 These three functions have remained interrelated, although the recent decline of paid labor and work carried out at home has left the family as quintessentially a unit of affection and consumption. For the purpose of the present analysis, I have decided to treat these functions separately and consider their relevant historiographies. Inventories, or lists of possessions normally taken at death, were common legal documents across Europe and North America in the eighteenth century.35 They detail, sometimes with accurate precision, the items found in a house. The works of Carole Shammas for England and North America, Annik Pardailhé-Galabrun for Paris, Mark Overton for the English counties of Kent and Cornwall, and, in particular, Lorna Weatherill for late seventeenth- and early-eighteenth-century England have widely used inventories to investigate what people owned and what they consumed.36 Although inventories can appear rather dull documents, they are key sources not just for quantifying consumption but also for investigating the meaning domestic objects had for those who used them. McKendrick proposed a vision of consumption based on emulative spending and dominated by market-oriented forces. The work of Lorna Weatherill uses domestic inventories to show instead how consumption was more than just the acquisition and disposal of goods to enhance one’s status. Most of the objects used in a home had personal and collective meanings for the people who used them. Weatherill borrows from contemporary sociology to explain

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the mechanisms through which consumption functioned in an early modern household. Erving Goffman’s The Presentation of Self in Everyday Life (1956) distinguished two conceptual and physical spaces called, respectively, “front” and “back” stage. Weatherill adopts this distinction and suggests the material life of early modern houses was similarly divided between a front and a back stage. The front stage was the more easily accessible (public) part of a house, the area where guests were welcomed and entertainment was carried out. This was the space for display, especially of high-value and new items. The back stage was the private or personal part of a house where the more concealed aspect of family life would be carried out. Here things of quotidian use or personal value were most commonly found. This distinction is for us rather obvious: most bedrooms are more private than sitting rooms. Weatherill suggests this distinction consolidated during the late seventeenth and eighteenth centuries but remained based on different forms of consumer behavior according to class and gender. For instance, families with long-distance cultural connections such as merchants or the urban professional elite possessed new or status goods such as books and clocks both in the front and back stage while the more traditional, although not less wealthy, gentry were more keen to invest in front-stage objects confirming their social position. Inventories can also be misleading as they seem to point to a world of increasing material welfare. Weatherill warns us against thinking the Enlightenment was a period of transition to present-day levels of wealth. Although material improvement could be found in domestic dwellings and personal possessions in many parts of Europe and North America, this does not mean these societies were characterized by plenty. Frederick Morton Eden’s State of the Poor, first published in 1797, presented a rather bleak picture of the budgets of laboring families: in England, many of the necessities were barely present, and it was not uncommon for a person to wear all the clothing they owned at once.37 The new world was no better; in Maryland, seventy percent of the poor had nothing to sit on.38 In fact, the fear of slipping down into poverty and degradation was one of the favorite subjects of painters such as Hogarth, Moreland, and Dighton.39 Historians claim that the capacity to consume was founded upon an intensification of labor: Jan de Vries and other historians claim people in the eighteenth century were increasingly overworked and enjoyed less leisure than previous generations. This work, however, bankrolled consumer spending on a scale that would have been inconceivable for their grandparents. In the words of a contemporary, Sir James Steuart, “Men are forced to labour now because they are slaves to their own wants.”40

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The house functioned as a unit of production as well as consumption. This was true of the many trades still carried out in back kitchens as in the case of the shoemaker in Figure 4.6. While the wife cooks at the hearth, the husband is lasting a shoe. One part of the house is used as a workshop and the other as a kitchen. The table in the middle shows the prosperity (of food and accoutrements) produced by the labor of both husband and wife. The presence of work in houses was not simply due to a lack of spatial specialization. Jan de Vries argues that the increase in working households was a result of what he calls an “industrious revolution.”41 It was not uncommon to find women and children spinning yarn or doing other activities within the space of the home even if their husbands and fathers were working outside the domestic walls. Betty Foot, a twenty-five-year-old Connecticut girl, spent her time knitting, sewing, carding, quilting, and in other paid textile activities. On March 7, 1775, she wrote in her diary: “I stay’d at home & finish’d Molly’s Worsted Stockings and fix’d two Gowns for Welch’s Girls which came to 1s 6d.”42 Earnings like Berry’s supplemented the wages of their fathers and grown-up brothers and generated disposable income for spending on both household commodities and apparel.

FIGURE 4.6: Cobbler’s Hall, ca. 1800. Northampton Museum and Art Gallery, Boot and Shoe Collection 620. Reproduced Courtesy of the Northampton Borough Council.

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One case in point is the Latham family from Scarisbrick in Lancashire, the subject of a detailed study.43 The Lathams belonged to a rural class of modest landowners (twenty acres of land they cultivated themselves) who employed no servants. Richard Latham, husband and father of seven, left an account book detailing the expenses of a relatively modest family over forty-three years from 1724 until Richard’s death in 1767. Two features of the Latham’s material life should be underlined. Firstly, the material conditions of the family seemed to improve only when the additional income of the children (in this case, mostly women) became available. In a sense, the Lathams are paradigmatic of an “industrious family” as described by Jan de Vries. Secondly, and as a consequence, both work and consumption within the house were not constant. The Lathams’s material well-being varied over time.44 The first two decades, when the couple settled down into marital life and had six daughters and one son, were difficult years on the brink of deprivation. In the following ten years, when the children reached working age, the family could spend more, especially on clothing. For the parents, now in their late forties and fifties, this was the period of maximum consumption. The children leaving home after the mid-1750s meant again going back to a lower level of expenditure.45 Last but not least, the early modern domestic space has been seen as a space of familial affection and the creation of belonging. Lawrence Stone’s celebrated and widely criticized thesis claimed the late seventeenth century saw the birth of domesticity: an intense emotional bond among siblings and parents. This might appear contradictory with the previous suggestion that domestic spaces were also places of production and consumption. However, much of the literature on consumption (and to a certain extent also on production) has taken sentiment and meaning created and negotiated within a household as central to the way economic and consumer lives were structured across gender and age boundaries.46 It was the emotional nature of the family that led, for instance, to a search for polite manners. The space where a family lived became a space of presentation and representation of conformity to widespread and sometimes stereotypical notions of how a family should live. Carole Shammas and Ann Smart Martin point out that knives and forks, glassware and tea equipment—increasingly common in eighteenth-century English and American inventories—testify that the house was a place of entertainment and conviviality with meals, especially dinner, becoming the familial focus of the day.47 Tea drinking also became a popular form of socialization across social classes, a practice Adam Smith believed was a luxury of the poor as well as the rich. Polite manners were performed in

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a ritual of socialization and entertainment within the home, though one can see the increasing concern that over-refinement was destroying the fabric of marital relations (as in Hogarth’s Mariage à la Mode) or that parents’ material and social ambitions spoiled their too-often unpromising children. The long eighteenth century did not just see the appearance of new ways for families to present themselves but also new ways to represent domestic spaces and domesticity. Hannah Greig chartered the emergence of a series of representations in the form of paintings, prints, and satires; transfer prints on ceramics; and woven and embroidered representations on textiles with the house, and especially polite settings, as a central theme.48 The best examples of domestic objects representing domesticity are conversation pieces such as A Family of Three at Tea that were visual representations of the refined manners of the subjects, who were intent on polite activities such as conversing, pouring and sipping tea, or playing games.49

THE MATERIAL CULTURE OF FAMILIES BEYOND THE HOME It would be incorrect to think the space of families was simply that of the domestic. Carole Shammas makes the point that during the long eighteenth century “the desire to withdraw into the nuclear family manifested itself,” leading a century later to the construction of Victorian “cozy nests.”50 However, one has to be cautious in characterizing the eighteenth-century domestic space as a separate entity. Amanda Vickery makes a case for a more nuanced understanding of “liminality” between the domestic and the nondomestic (the street, shops, coffeehouses, assembly rooms, etc.).51 Hogarth’s shrewd eye captured the murky boundaries between family life and the street in many of his prints and paintings—for instance, by placing a depraved mother in the public space as in the case of Gin Lane. It was also not uncommon to experience the public in the private space of one’s home. Merchants and shopkeepers continued to live and work in the same building, creating a porous division between family and business.52 In the country, it was common to find animals within the domestic space as in the case of the seventeenth-century stube, the main living room in German houses.53 The life of families was also influenced by the physical structure of what we could now call the built environment. Towns and cities grew quickly and somewhat haphazardly. Visitors to the great European metropolises complained unanimously about the cost of renting rooms. Most families had to live in confined spaces: in early eighteenth-century Paris, fifty-seven percent of all dwellings were composed of just one room. Sébastian Mercier commented upon

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the modern Parisian blocks that were five or six stories high in which people lived in the dark in overcrowded and often structurally unsound dwellings.54 He reported how they had to curb the height of houses because “several private citizens had virtually built one house on top of another. . . . The poor who live up there to save money have to pay more to have wood and water brought up; the others have to light a candle at midday to eat their dinner.”55 The social and cultural life of cities had a great deal to offer to individuals and families and attracted young apprentices, female servants, and wealthy households keen to spend part of the year socializing away from their main residence in the countryside. However, the city was also perceived as a danger to family life as it created migration and was perilous to the moral character of men and women alike. One of the most surprising features of city life was its frantic pace. With the adoption of street lighting in the late seventeenth century, the city world became one of nocturnal as well as daytime entertainment. Some complained that this new freedom was deleterious for the safe keeping of one’s family. In 1697, the citizens of Leipzig were warned to “keep their own [families] at home in the evening,” highlighting how roaming the streets at night was part of the life of those with no family, when “apprentices, boys, maids and such unmarried folk are found idly in the streets, where they practice many improper things.”56 Perhaps the citizens of Leipzig saw it as less improper to spend their time at the city’s renowned yearly fair or buying things in shops, an activity termed in English as “shopping” from the middle of the eighteenth century. Although part of the literature focuses on the individual shopper, a great deal of buying was done by families and for families. Both private accounts and shopkeepers’ account books show how purchases were made out of individual wants as well as a way of furnishing and supplying the household. Each item was subject to negotiation, often financial, and frequently—but not necessarily— depending on the husband’s purse.57 But it was not just a matter of buying things for the family. Those who were able used family relations to gain access to things that would have been otherwise out of reach. This could take the form of a commission to buy metropolitan novelties unavailable for those living in the countryside. Clare Walsh calls this “proxi-shopping” and suggests that the family provided “a network of social obligations and affinities which influence[d] shopping patterns and decision making.” She concludes that shopping for the family may have involved “expressions of trust, dependence, love, or control.”58 Through their purchases, families living in Europe or North America often connected their local world to broader geographies formed of places that in

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most cases they never visited: a husband might acquire a Chinese set of tea cups for his family’s afternoon tea as in Figure 4.7, or a young lady might dream of acquiring a nice box in the shape of an English country cottage produced in India (Figure 4.8). In other cases, family life was fractured across different spaces. We have already encountered the somewhat oppressing space in which the seventeenth-century family of Abel Tasman stands looking at us (Figure 4.3). But this is a misleading interpretation of the geographies in which the Tasman family lived. Abel Tasman was a great Dutch navigator of the seventeenth century and spent nearly thirty years of his life with his second wife, Janetjie Tjaers, whom he married in 1631. The couple did not have children; Claesgen, the child in the painting, was Tasman’s daughter by his first wife. But two years into his new marriage, Tasman was sent to Batavia, returning to Holland only in 1637. This is probably when the picture was painted. It would be incorrect to think that the space in which the family stands is their family place. Neither was Holland. Perhaps Tasman’s pointing to the globe is not a

FIGURE 4.7: A Family of Three at Tea, attributed to Richard Collins. Oil on canvas, ca. 1727. 64.2  76.3 cm. Victoria and Albert Museum, P.9&:1-1934.

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reference to his travels or explorations but a sign he gives us of where this family was going. When he left the following year to return to Batavia, he brought with him his wife and child and probably the portrait of their brief family life in Holland. For some families, the expanding geographies of empire provided a new context for family life. The recent work by Linda Colley and Margot Finn shows how in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries the families of servants of the various European East India companies and a growing number of colonial civil servants lived their lives across flexible geographies that connected homes in different continents.59 John Elliot, the younger son of the governor general of India, secured a few locks of hair from his brother William before his departure from India in 1811 to England. He then wrote to his mother,

FIGURE 4.8: Work box. Wood, veneered with ivory, engraved and highlighted with red

and black lac. Produced in Vishakhapatnam, India, ca. 1790–1800. 15.5 10.5 cm. Victoria and Albert Museum W.20:1 to 5-1951.

 15.1 

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Lady Minton, that he had made the ship’s captain promise that in the case of his brother’s death the captain “would as far as was in his power prevent his [William’s] things from being touched but that it was necessary a few of this clothes should be sold as there is an order which obliges a Captain to sell them.”60 William never reached London, and this family was never reunited.

CONCLUSION This chapter charted some of the transformations that affected the material world inhabited by late seventeenth- and eighteenth-century families. Starting with the individual, it has been shown how people sought, feared, negotiated, embraced, or rejected material change. New things appeared: new types of dwellings, new forms of street life, and new world horizons. In some cases, these changes prompted the invention of new concepts, such as that of comfort, to explain often unarticulated desires. This chapter shows how these material changes affected families and also how families shaped material change. The construction of space as generated by the interaction between individuals, families, and things has been considered. But one should be cautious to not reduce materiality to simple consumer goods. Environment, geographies of relations, and the conceptual vocabulary (such as comfort, homeliness, and affection) in the eighteenth century can be gathered from the multifarious material ensemble that includes tokens left by mothers abandoning their children, the account books of a farmer, the six-story buildings of late eighteenth-century Paris, or the clothing of a sibling who died on a voyage back to Europe. All of these are manifestations of the material circumstances in which people lived and the ways in which people shaped their own and others’ identities and conveyed meanings (economic, social, religious, etc.) through materiality. Moving from considering the consumer as the central character of eighteenth-century life to considering collective social forms such as the family is a central feature of this chapter. Individuals are seen as socially bounded rather than free agents. No one would deny that families have played an important part in historical analyses. However, one of the limitations encountered—and, alas, not totally surmounted—in writing this chapter was the unspoken correlation between the family and the domestic environment. This chapter adopts a different method of analysis—starting with the individual and zooming out to the household, the street, the city, and the world. This chapter does not hide the tension between individualism and family ties by observing both individuals and families in multiple spatial settings.

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The final caveat of this chapter is that it denies a trajectory toward modernity. These analyzed changes do not explain industrialization, the emergence of rational town planning, sanitation, consumerism or the moral dangers of such achievements ranging from hedonism to alienation. As John Brewer has observed, historians’ analysis of the consumer revolution “was concerned with the origins and development of something that was considered modern.”61 This chapter shies away from endorsing such a perspective and attempts to produce a more balanced analysis that addresses limits, possibilities, and failures.

CHAPTER FIVE

Education valentina k. tikoff

In overviews of Western education, the Enlightenment is often discussed in terms of educational philosophy as the “Locke to Pestalozzi” era, emphasizing prominent educational theorists and the plans and institutions of innovative educators. While important, these developments are only a small part of the much broader story of education in the late seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. In the past twenty years especially, scholarship has revealed many insights about education in the lives of children, families, and communities. Such studies fit well with increasingly expansive views of the Enlightenment, which is now often studied and characterized as a cultural and social as well as political and intellectual movement. These new perspectives are especially useful when considering education as it relates to the history of children and families. The broadened scope reveals a complicated and variegated picture. While educational provisions did expand, educational practice and experience varied dramatically. Gender, race, ethnicity, and socioeconomic status all strongly affected the availability, provision, and reception of education, even within the same location or family. Education differed not only according to population but also according to its objectives. This chapter is organized around three principal objectives of education: education as socialization, particularly for children; education as job training; and education as a status marker. These objectives were neither mutually exclusive nor functionally distinct in the late seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. Indeed, several developments cut across all three.

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First, it is essential to recognize the critical roles of families and the household in the education of their own members. While private homes had always been the site for some types of instruction and learning, enlightenment homes were increasingly likened to little schools, with a particular emphasis on the mother as educator. They were also sites of self-education for their adult residents, facilitated by expansion and changes in print culture. Besides providing education directly, families also influenced their members’ education in other ways, from shaping the types and amount of education that children and young adults received outside the home to supporting and interacting with the individuals and institutions providing education. Families’ decisions and interactions with educational providers outside the home undoubtedly became more complex as many types of education were formalized, a second hallmark of the era. Yet even at the end of the eighteenth century, not all formal education occurred in schools. Religious institutions, charities, and other entities were other important providers of education outside the family home. They are particularly important because they frequently served different populations than did the schools. Nonschool sites are especially crucial for shedding light on the educational experiences of girls and women as both students and teachers since female school attendance was usually lower than that of males. The dramatic growth of printed materials for teaching and learning is a third key development of this period. Both the number and types of printed materials expanded; particularly notable was the profusion of children’s books and printed texts that taught skills previously learned orally or through experience. The impact and reach of these new publications affected education taught and pursued for many different objectives and in many different settings, from schoolrooms to workplaces and private homes. They also provided new opportunities for autodidacts. This role of printed materials in eighteenthcentury education is undoubtedly related to the explosion of print culture and the period’s reading revolution, during which the intensive and repeated reading of a limited number of authoritative texts, often religious, was increasingly displaced by extensive reading of a larger number and variety of texts. The increasing prominence of writing and mathematical skills is a fourth significant development. Like the spread of printed materials, these developments are linked to broader social and cultural developments of the period: the gradual shift from oral to written culture and the technological, commercial, and fashionable demands for numeracy. As Daniel R. Headrick has pointed out, a “quantifying spirit” pervaded Western society in this period.1 Since educational developments are so intertwined with broader developments of the

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period, understanding them not only improves our knowledge of the place of children and the family within the broader social, cultural, and economic developments of the period but also improves our understanding of the Enlightenment itself.

EDUCATION AS SOCIALIZATION: PRIMARY EDUCATION Religious and moral instruction was a key feature of much seventeenth- and eighteenth-century education and was particularly prominent in primary education. The inculcation of religion and morality pervaded most of the primary curriculum, but it was also taught explicitly, generally first in both priority and sequence—second was reading; third was writing; and fourth, if taught at all, was numeracy. While these basic components and ranking of primary education had been inherited from earlier periods and remained intact well into the nineteenth century, several important developments occurred during this period. In particular, writing and mathematics both gained in prominence, and the socializing and moral component of primary education increasingly emphasized secular civic and patriotic values. While these developments were widespread, it is important to remember that students’ location, gender, and socioeconomic status also strongly affected the education they received. Moral instruction was especially pronounced in and, indeed, was usually inseparable from reading instruction. In the typical curriculum of British North America, for example, even the most rudimentary reading guide, the hornbook, included a line of the Lord’s Prayer in addition to the alphabet and letter combinations; primers, like the ubiquitous New England Primer, likewise combined instruction in reading and religion, and students ultimately proceeded to reading the Bible directly. In Catholic countries, the catechism was often central to reading instruction. While reading and writing are now generally considered complementary literacy skills and are taught together, early modern educators regularly taught these skills separately. Moreover, many individuals who learned to read often never proceeded to learn writing, one of many factors that complicate attempts to calculate literacy rates. Yet writing instruction became more central to primary education in the late seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. As with reading, learning to write had both moral and academic dimensions. As Seth Lerer has noted, “Among schoolmasters, tutors, and philosophers, a student’s handwriting remained a key to moral character. . . . Even the choice of a penknife [for sharpening and cleaning quill-pens] could reveal the student’s inner quality, his class, and his taste.”2 Such thinking persisted as writing became

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FIGURE 5.1: This image is from one of the handwriting manuals that proliferated in

the eighteenth century. Such printed manuals provided models for learners to copy, the text of which also frequently conveyed didactic messages. This page is directed at female learners; it provides a model of a script deemed appropriate for women, and its text reflects the authors’ linkage of writing ability in girls and women to contemporary notions of female characteristics and virtues. The Young Clerks Assistant, or Penmanship Made Easy, Instructive and Entertaining: Being a Compleat Pocket-copy-book, Curiously Engrav’d for the Practice of Youth in the Art of Writing (London, ca. 1733). Image courtesy of DePaul University Library.

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increasingly central to primary education for broader groups of learners, including girls. The ability to write joined reading and needlework in much female education. One reflection of this combination was the sampler, often an embroidered alphabet. Some scholars contend that writing had been comparatively neglected in early modern educational curricula because it was not essential to the central educational objectives of religious and moral inculcation. They argue that the growing emphasis on writing in the late seventeenth and eighteenth centuries reflects the integration of growing portions of the population into a market economy and the need for writing that such integration demanded. This hypothesis also helps account for the persistent male-female gaps in writing ability, though writing became increasingly prominent in both male and female education.3 Numeracy skills also received more attention than they had previously. Whereas basic mathematics, or ciphering, had long been taught in some schools—particularly to boys planning for mercantile careers—it was the least regularly taught component of the primary education curriculum, perhaps because it was less directly related to the paramount goal of children’s moral and religious formation. Yet even mathematics could be taught and tested as a sort of moral subject, instilling discipline as well as a practical skill.4 While some girls and women also learned mathematics, females generally received far less education in this area than their male counterparts. A 1775 British text on female education narrated as letters from a mother to her daughter (named Sophy, like the sister of Rousseau’s Emile) directed: Give particular attention to your ciphering, and to acquire such a competent knowledge in this useful art, as is proper for a woman. I say a woman; for it is not necessary that she would understand it so perfectly as a man; as her sphere of action is more confined, so her knowledge, in this respect, should be more confined likewise. You ought, however, I think to be a complete mistress of the four simple rules of arithmetic, the rule of proportion, and a plain method of book-keeping, together with some knowledge of fractions vulgar and decimal.5 As this quotation suggests, mathematics study, as with writing, was advocated for girls as a way of helping them fulfill gendered roles in a mainly domestic realm. Notwithstanding the spread of ideas about the social utility of more education for greater portions of the population, long-standing apprehensions about the wisdom of widespread formal education persisted. Even well-known philosophes harbored such apprehensions.6 The education of indigenous

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colonial populations and slaves elicited similar ambivalence. Slave owners, colonial officials, and European missionaries, particularly in Catholic countries, often considered baptism and religious instruction important. Such duties regularly fell to the members of Catholic religious orders in the Spanish, French, and Portuguese colonies. In Protestant areas, concerns that religious instruction might undermine colonial governors’ and slave owners’ authority made the introduction of religious and other education slower and less consistent. Many Europeans and colonialists also questioned the educability of Africans and Native Americans. Nonetheless, instruction in Christianity and European languages was increasingly considered appropriate and advantageous. A number of plantations in British North America also established Sunday schools for the religious instruction of slaves, though literacy instruction for plantation slaves remained much rarer and was banned in some places.

ELEMENTARY EDUCATION AT SCHOOLS AND CHARITY INSTITUTIONS Not all primary education occurred within schools; even when schools did exist, they varied widely. Some were elaborate buildings while others were little more than classes conducted in private homes. Urban boys were primary schools’ most regular students, but even they had very uneven access to and experiences of formal schooling. Some places, such as New England towns, did promote widespread primary education and even passed laws making it compulsory, a development often attributed to the area’s strong Puritan character; however, these places remained exceptional. Elsewhere, cities sometimes subsidized the education of poor students or required schoolmasters or teaching clergy to educate such children gratis. Such provisions often tacitly excluded girls, though opportunities and institutions for female schooling did exist and expanded in this period. In seventeenth- and eighteenth-century France, city officials often required nuns to promise to teach girls as a condition of their being allowed to establish a house in the city. Often, though, girls’ schools had a stronger emphasis on teaching needlework and other feminine tasks than on literacy and numeracy. The distinction between secular/religious and public/private schooling is often difficult to discern. This is the case for both male and female education and in both Protestant and Catholic areas. During the seventeenth century, Catholic teaching orders such as the Ursulines and Christian Brothers expanded efforts to provide elementary education for girls and boys, respectively. Given the frequent dearth of educational alternatives for girls, the Ursulines’

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role is especially significant, though often overlooked, because they usually worked within religious houses in both European and colonial settings. Among Protestants, the German Pietists were particularly active in establishing and staffing schools—including the famous orphanage, school, and seminary complex established by August Hermann Francke at Halle—in the late seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. In the wake of the French and American revolutions, the socializing and indoctrinating functions of education remained but were increasingly oriented to patriotic ideals. This was most dramatic in the case of France during the deChristianization campaigns of the early 1790s, when the revolutionary state took over schools and sought to make them sites for inculcating loyalty to the new republic, a goal also reflected in the new “Revolutionary Catechisms,” which reflected the “transfer of sacrality” that Mona Ozouf has also observed in festivals and other arenas of revolutionary life.7 While revolutionary educational legislation was not always implemented, enforced, or enduring, it politicized primary education in France in fundamentally new ways. While the American Revolution was less radical, the elementary education of young children in the homes and primary schools of the new American nation likewise became sites for inculcating new republican values. It was not only in the revolutionary republican societies, however, that primary education became a vehicle for promoting the interests and agenda of the state. In monarchical Prussia and Austria, schools “became a central target of state policy precisely because they offered an instrument for exacting obedience. . . . The promotion of literacy was a crucial means of cultivating the moral autonomy of the subject.”8 While neither the Prussian nor Austrian plan for universal compulsory schooling succeeded in this period, the fact that these two absolutist monarchies pursued such policies is significant, reflecting the late eighteenth-century belief in schools’ positive socializing potential even in the face of competing apprehensions about the risks of educating the masses. In many areas, schooling was neither universal nor compulsory but expanded nonetheless. Charity schools were established in many locales. Late seventeenth- and eighteenth-century England, for example, saw a proliferation of charity or Sunday schools, such as those of the Society for Promoting Christian Knowledge. The later eighteenth century also witnessed the establishment of new schools for populations previously excluded from institutional education, such as the blind and the deaf. The growing emphasis on written versus oral (and aural) culture undoubtedly facilitated such developments, especially for deaf education. While Braille was not developed until the nineteenth century, precursors in the form of raised-type books did appear, reflecting the

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convergence of the growth of print culture with Lockean sensationist epistemological philosophies and pedagogy. In colonial settings, some Native American schools were established, but they were not widespread. Formal schooling was even rarer for African Americans. Notwithstanding the efforts of advocates for the education of slave and free blacks and educational initiatives supported by black benevolent societies (comprised of freedmen), institutions like the New York African Free School remained rare exceptions. Residential relief establishments also increasingly provided educational functions in many European and colonial cities. Some institutions were designated explicitly for poor youngsters, such as foundling homes and orphanages. Others were general hospitals and poorhouses not originally intended specifically for juvenile populations but that came to accommodate large numbers of children. In such institutions, child wards who reached the age of six or seven often received some sort of education on-site if they were not fostered or adopted. While huge percentages of babies abandoned (often anonymously) to foundling homes perished in infancy, the children of known parentage left in institutional care at older ages often fared better. Indeed, the orphanages that accommodated such children sometimes also served as schools for other children in the city or for paying boarders. While some scholars have questioned whether charity schools and relief establishments provided much more than religious indoctrination, it is also useful to remember that religious and moral instruction was an important component of most primary education even in other types of schools, and we must consider the education received by charity children within the context of what we know about the education (or lack thereof) received by other children of comparable social and economic backgrounds. While rarely offering an education comparable to that received by elites, many charity institutions seem to have provided educational benefits otherwise available only at a cost, or not at all, to other children of similar backgrounds.

ELEMENTARY EDUCATION IN PRIVATE HOMES Notwithstanding the proliferation of educational institutions, private homes also remained important sites of teaching and learning. Some homes actually functioned as schools, such as the “dame schools” of Britain and British North America or the “amigas” of Spain and Spanish America in which secular women taught religious precepts and reading within their homes. Education also occurred formally and informally in homes that did not regularly offer educational services. Elite children were often educated at home by private tutors, as were some children and adults at the opposite end of the socioeconomic

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spectrum. While slaves in colonial and transatlantic societies generally had very little access to literacy instruction, those who did often learned these skills within household settings. Such was the case of the famous young poet Phillis Wheatley, for example, who was exceptional not only in becoming literate but even more so in authoring a book. Her story also signals the growing importance of writing and print culture. We have already noted several ways in which print culture reflected and furthered developments in primary education in this period: from the primers that combined instruction in reading, writing, and religion to the embossed-text precursors of Braille. The eighteenth century is also often cited as the century that gave birth to children’s literature, much of which combined educative and recreational functions. This literature ranged from chapbook versions of

FIGURE 5.2: This image reflects the eighteenth-century emphasis on recreation as a form of learning, the growing prominence of mathematical reasoning as a skill worth teaching and learning, and the role of the print culture in both. This sample game of draughts (or, checkers) is from a book, the title page of which reads An Introduction to the Game of Draughts, Containing Fifty Select Games . . . The Whole Designed for the Instruction of Young Players, in this Innocent and Delightful Amusement. By William Payne, Teacher of Mathematics (London, 1756). Courtesy John M. Wing Collection, The Newberry Library, Chicago.

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existing material (such as children’s editions of Robinson Crusoe) to the fairy tales collected by Charles Perrault to new biographies of things, such as The History and Adventures of a Lady’s Slippers and Shoes, Written by Themselves (London, 1754). As Lerer pointed out, these new books often reflected Locke’s epistemological and pedagogical theories, combining illustrations with text to facilitate children’s learning through sensory stimulus and reflection rather than memorization. Similar principles are also evident in many of the works published by John Newbery, a pioneer in children’s book publishing (for whom the American Library Association named its Newbery Medal for children’s books), as well as in the profusion of children’s games and toys that combined word and image in print. Perrault’s fairy tales and the books printed by Newbery could be just as moralizing as more didactic schoolbooks, but they were often less overtly religious and intended to please as well as to teach. Many of these books and games were undoubtedly used in bourgeois homes, thus providing another reflection of the continuity of education between home and school.

EDUCATION AS JOB TRAINING Just as it is often difficult to distinguish clearly between moral and academic instruction in primary education in this period, it is also often difficult to draw clear lines between education and labor in vocational training. Yet attempting to disentangle these threads may be foolish as these activities were intertwined, and contemporaries rarely perceived of them as distinct activities. While the inseparability of many forms of education and labor was not new, the late seventeenth and eighteenth centuries witnessed the increasing formalization of instruction in skills that previously had been learned primarily or exclusively through on-the-job experience. This occurred through both the formalization of instruction and the development of published manuals that supplemented the customary knowledge communicated orally and experientially. For boys and young men, the types of vocational training most readily identifiable as formal schooling were the secondary school and the university. As a prerequisite for university education, Latin was at the center of much secondary school education, though vernacular languages were becoming increasingly common in academic study and publishing. In Catholic areas, the Society of Jesus (Jesuits) played large roles in establishing and staffing secondary schools and universities. Thus, their expulsion from European countries and eventual (though temporary) dissolution by the Pope in the later eighteenth century left a gap in secondary and tertiary education. While secondary and then

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university-level education were required of students aspiring to professions from theology to law, this kind of education was an exclusively male preserve and always quite small relative to even the male population. Although the occasional scholarship student was admitted, secondary and university education were overwhelmingly the preserve of male social elites. While they never displaced more traditional secondary schools or universities, new kinds of schools developed to teach subjects traditionally excluded from secondary and university curricula but for which education beyond what was offered in primary schools was considered increasingly necessary. We have already noted that formal mathematical training had long been necessary for mercantile careers and that, as commercial societies expanded, so did the demand for mathematical instruction. In some contexts, evening schools offered opportunities to learn these skills as illustrated in the following 1724 advertisement in The Boston Gazette: “This Evening Mr. Samuel Grainger begins his Evening Schools for Writing, Accompts, and the Mathematicks, such as intend to learn are desired to begin speedily and they shall be dispatcht with Expedition suitable to their Application.”9 Such educational sites undoubtedly catered mainly to males, for whom the skills imparted were considered most appropriate and necessary. Nonetheless, printed manuals also promised to teach commercial calculations to aspiring autodidacts, and these publications could be used by a wider audience, including females. In areas outside commerce, mathematical skills were becoming more essential, prompting the development of new educational institutions and texts— though, again, mainly for males. Navigation is a prominent example. At a time when both commercial fortunes and wars were made and lost at sea, the skills required to pilot ships safely across oceans became increasingly mathematical and scientific, prompting the establishment of maritime schools, such as the Moscow School of Mathematics and Navigation established by Peter the Great, in many coastal countries. Military academies and technical colleges in other fields, too, such as Mexico City’s royal College of Mining (established in 1792), were established and attracted male students who hoped for careers in these fields. Notwithstanding the establishment and increasing popularity of these new kinds of schools, advanced formal schooling remained the preserve of a very small and nearly exclusively male proportion of the population. Primary schooling was the most formal education most males and females ever received, if they even got that. Experience was far more common than schooling as a form of job training. As chapter 3 in this volume notes, children of a wide array of social orders were expected to work as contributors to family economies and

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in order to learn trades and skills enabling them to become respectable adult members of society. Job-training arrangements could be formal (e.g., guild apprenticeships or other types of training contracts) or informal; could but did not necessarily entail coresidence with teacher-employers (e.g., guild masters); and could occur within or beyond household settings (a person’s natal household or another).

GUILDS AND CHARITIES AS SITES OF JOB TRAINING Guilds and the job-training functions they provided through apprenticeship remained very important in urban milieus of most of Europe and the Americas throughout most of this period. Though they were increasingly undermined by competition from imported products, protoindustries, and new economic theories and policies that promoted market liberalization (such as those promoted by the French physiocrats and Adam Smith), guilds remained important economic, cultural, and job-training institutions. Yet just as focusing only on schools ignores other sources of primary education, focusing on the guilds also obscures other sites of vocational education and training. As Claire Haru Crowston demonstrated especially well for eighteenth-century Paris, it is particularly important to look beyond guilds to get a sense of job training for girls and young women. Prominent sites of job training outside the guilds were charity institutions—whether residential institutions like poorhouses or orphanages or artisanal schools established to teach girls crafts considered appropriate for women, like lace making.10 Spinning schools, too, were common places where the lines between training and labors blurred. Such initiatives were very much in keeping with enlightenment-era social welfare theories and reforms, which sought to reinvigorate societies and economies by utilizing and molding the bodies and minds of their populations. Because they were seen as most malleable, poor children were central to these ambitious plans. Through schemes that combined education and labor, social reformers of the day often believed fervently that poor children could be diverted from illegal and immoral paths of criminality, destitution, or economic desperation and shaped into respectable, responsible adults who would contribute to economic and social progress. Public welfare and charity institutions facilitated job training for young wards in two principal ways: through out placements and in-house training workshops. In general, British and British North American charity institutions relied principally on external placements to provide both the care and job training of their wards, a continuation of the parish apprenticeships specified in the

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Elizabethan Poor Law. Yet even in these areas, institutional care and training for poor youth became more prevalent. In much of continental Europe, there was a longer and more widespread tradition of indoor relief. Charity institutions tended to provide more training on-site and until their wards reached more advanced ages; this was especially true for girls in Catholic areas. Nonetheless, recent studies suggest that the common belief that Catholic institutions prepared girls for little more than marriage or religious life should be modified. While some well-known institutions trained wards to sing—such as the Italian conservatory for which Vivaldi composed music—other institutions regularly prepared female wards for eventual employment beyond orphanage confines, usually as domestic servants or in textile crafts. The job training of charity boys often entailed greater mobility and, indeed, sometimes travel over great distances. This was particularly the case of youths recruited from charity homes to serve on national merchant and military fleets as occurred in English, Dutch, Italian, and Spanish port cities. While London’s Maritime Society served as a sort of clearinghouse that dispatched boys to sea with little formal training, a maritime orphanage in Seville functioned quite differently, providing opportunities for advanced navigation instruction (which required large amounts of math, including trigonometry), privileged positions during maritime voyages, and access to the pilot’s exam (and, thus, officer status)—at least to its most academically promising wards. Indeed, this orphanage, named after a patron saint of sailors (Saint Elmo), developed textbooks of maritime mathematics and other instructional practices (including a fully functioning ship installed at the orphanage), many of which were later adopted by the Midshipmen’s Academy subsequently established at Cadiz. Moreover, some relief institutions also provided specific training. For example, the Hôtels Dieu in France provided midwifery instruction without a formal apprenticeship. As with the primary education provided by charity organizations, scholars have debated the motives and results of many job-training programs for the poor and other marginal populations in European and colonial settings. Some have contended that such programs were thinly veiled social control measures and that guilds and charity institutions exploited the labor of young wards in the name of training them. Yet other scholars have questioned such assertions. Joel Harrington, for example, has observed that the early modern German poorhouse “was not (as Foucault suggests) dominated by the punitive ostracism of the outsider, but rather by the rehabilatory potential of the insider,” especially destitute children, whom poorhouse administrators hoped to reintegrate into the broader urban community.11

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Undoubtedly, there was a wide range of experiences, and complaints from apprentices, charity wards, and families—sometimes resulting in legal proceedings—were common. Yet we often know of these cases precisely because there were inspections and channels of redress. Other evidence that charity institutions provided educational services perceived to be of some value is the frequency with which parents and other relatives sought to enroll children in such institutions, even if those institutions had been erected specifically for orphans. Studies of many such institutions reveal parents and other relatives tapping into the educational and job-training opportunities provided. As Thomas Max Safley noted, the sponsorship of an apprenticeship alone was a considerable expense that Augsburg orphanage administrators provided for their charges and, indirectly, also for their families. For girls and their families, the promise of a dowry or protection from the vulnerability and ignominy of selling one’s labor on the open market could make even labor performed within an institutional setting preferable to the alternatives. There is little doubt that many charity children in such settings—boys and girls alike—regularly provided labor, but it is also useful to remember that labor and education were not considered mutually exclusive for most young people, whether within or outside charity establishments. These findings, moreover, suggest that even poor students and their families were not necessarily passive agents of the education, training, and employment provided and required by charity institutions. They sometimes actively sought and claimed them, even subverting the providers’ intentions to do so. We see this also in colonial settings. While some scholars have aptly noted the detrimental effects of European education and acculturation on Native American society, others have shown that some Native American individuals and communities embraced literacy and particular features of the European colonizers’ culture while rejecting others. Gwyn Campbell has even suggested that slaves who received a Christian education were often selected for supervisory positions, “an advantage which could not have been lost on slave mothers or their children.”12 Thus, even though the socialization and acculturation of children were undoubtedly central goals of many educational providers and sponsors, focusing on their motives alone reveals only part of the picture. Families, too, retained important roles in determining the kinds of education and training children and other members received and often remained actively involved in children’s lives even after entrusting them to others. Thus, we should be wary of assuming that families ceased to play important roles in the education and training of their children just because they ceded this role to other individuals or institutions.

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EDUCATION AS SOCIAL STATUS While socialization, literacy instruction, and job training were the most explicitly stated purposes of education in the late seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, education also played an increasingly important role as a status marker. As educational institutions multiplied, evaluations of education and literacy became more nuanced. As we have noted, education varied widely according to gender, location, and socioeconomic status. Even some new institutions created in the eighteenth century restricted access based on students’ lineage. Lower status institutions were also often socioeconomically tiered and, in multicultural colonial societies, racially segregated as well. Thus, educational provisions not only socialized and trained students for distinct roles in adult society but also reified racial and status differences. Even European orphanages frequently separated different populations of children: Catholics and Protestants in Augsburg, children of citizens and of noncitizens in Amsterdam, and children of noble families from others in Seville. The social stratification of educational institutions from charity homes to elite universities prompts the question of whether education was a means of social mobility. Yet it is important to note that social mobility was not a dominant educational goal in seventeenth- and eighteenth-century Western culture. If education was intended to promote change, it was to be in the service of broader social progress: a more productive workforce, a more virtuous society, and so forth. The goal at the individual level was generally stability rather than change: maintaining a person and his or her family within the class or station into which he or she was born. Military and technical institutions probably provided (male) students with the most potential for social mobility since graduates of such schools could quickly apply and demonstrate their service in high-demand fields. Elsewhere, opportunities were limited. Even at the heralded Pietest educational complex Francke had established at Halle, Anthony J. La Vopa found that social and economic hierarchies within the student population were largely perpetuated.13 Understanding the high value placed on custom and social stability in old regime culture and the degree to which education varied by gender, race, and socioeconomic position might help explain an apparent paradox: while schooling and other forms of education expanded in the eighteenth century, some cultural historians have identified widening gaps between elite and popular cultures during the period. The increasing prominence of a new bourgeois model of identity and culture is an important part of this picture and has implications for our understanding of education.

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THE “BOURGEOIS PUBLIC SPHERE” Scholars have noted the long civilizing process in Western culture through which letters increasingly replaced arms as both a requirement and signifier of social status and moral virtue. Renaissance humanists famously promoted the image of the learned, engaged citizen and provided guidance for those who wished to showcase their erudition. This trend continued in this period, when very high functional literacy (and, increasingly, numeracy) and an ability to function in a milieu that depended on these skills became increasingly important. Indeed, education and its trappings came to rival formal juridical and lineage-based distinctions as a means for distinguishing between socioeconomic groups. These developments are part of what Jürgen Habermas famously described as the emergence of the “bourgeois public sphere,” which he notes developed around a core of institutions from salons to coffeehouses and Masonic lodges, all of which promoted the exchange of ideas, especially as articulated and circulated in printed form. While these new milieus existed apart from the patronage of monarchical courts, royal societies in the sciences and letters involved some of the same social groups and in some ways served comparable functions. These developments not only depended on a high level of functional literacy among those who participated directly in them but also shaped educational change in a number of ways. Many provided lectures and fora in which the genteel public could meet to learn about and discuss recent developments and theories in a variety of fields, from the arts to the sciences. They also sponsored academic and intellectual competitions and sometimes directly supported education at a variety of levels, from charity schools for poor children to advanced instruction in scientific subjects. Equally important, the development of the bourgeois public sphere generated demand for what we might call continuing education. In this latter sense especially, the bourgeois public sphere can usefully be considered yet another form of education as socialization, with the focus now on adults rather than children and the upper classes rather than the masses. As in primary education, ability remained critical in elite social settings, but writing and mathematical skills also were gaining in importance. Novels and periodicals were among the newer flourishing genres of reading, as were courtesy books, which had existed in the past but now proliferated, advising readers on their private and public lives, households, and comportment. Reading sites and practices also changed. Indeed, while the reading revolution of the eighteenth century was not restricted to any specific locale or social group, its core was the educated urban population, and this segment of the population drove these developments.

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Writing also became an increasingly important skill and marker of social status. As noted earlier, handwriting had long been considered a manifestation of “the student’s inner quality, his class, and his taste.”14 The male pronoun here is apt since even elite women often received little if any formal training in writing, even if they were very proficient readers. Thus, the new emphasis on writing presented a special challenge for women. Dena Goodman further pointed out that as the spelling of European languages became more fixed, not only penmanship and prose style but spelling as well came to reflect on the writer. She argues that this had negative implications for elite women in France, many of whom had developed a phonetic form of writing that previously had been considered acceptable, even laudable, but now was consider suspect and inferior. She notes that in the eighteenth century, “writing as a woman was equivalent to throwing like a girl.”15 Such judgments help explain both the prevalence and tone of eighteenthcentury handwriting manuals, including many targeted specifically at females. Social convention also increasingly required familiarity with mathematical and scientific developments. While the growing prominence of arithmetic in primary education and the increasing formalization of technical training in fields from navigation to the military were practical responses to commercial and technological developments, they were also in line with enlightenment enthusiasm for all things scientific and rational. Mathematics also increasingly served to understand topics from theology to contemporary society. The cultural fashion of scientific understanding was prominently displayed and promoted by the new bourgeois culture. Just as conducting experiments in parlors became fashionable so did discussing and solving mathematical and scientific problems. While the French noblewoman Emilie du Chatelet was unique in translating Newton’s Principia into French and becoming a leading mathematician herself, contemporary publications for literate, elite women suggest other women might have had some access to and participation in this culture, even though mathematics was still considered a mostly male subject.

THE BOURGEOIS HOME AND MOTHERS AS EDUCATORS Much has been written of the social and cultural milieus of the Enlightenment and how public and private spaces became increasingly gendered. Salons hosted and governed by elite women in France and elsewhere were important sites of the conversations at the heart of intellectual exchange for much of this period. Participation largely defined membership in the new cultural elite, which was still a very exclusive group but now transcended the traditional barrier between noble and commoner. French salonières and their counterparts

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elsewhere performed essential roles in moderating and guiding conversation and in training future salonières through a type of informal apprenticeship of younger women. Thus, salons were private spaces with very public functions and prominent roles for women. By the end of the late eighteenth century, though, they were losing prominence as conversation and oral culture were being eclipsed by the new emphasis on the written and printed word. This change also had strongly gendered connotations, disparagingly observed in Jean-Jacques Rousseau’s criticism of the salons as emasculating. Whereas the noble household had traditionally served public functions, the increasingly influential ideal of the bourgeois home was much more private

FIGURE 5.3: Notwithstanding the increasing institutionalization of many forms of learning, the home remained an important site of education, and the role of mothers as educators received prominent attention in the eighteenth century. This image—Jean-Siméon Chardin’s The Young Schoolmistress (ca. 1735–1736)—has been interpreted as a girl teaching a younger sibling, perhaps as preparation for her later role as a mother and teacher of her own children. Bequeathed by Mrs Edith Cragg, as part of the John Webb Bequest, 1925, National Gallery, London.

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and centered around the nuclear family alone. It was also a space associated with women and children. Unlike the salonière, the ideal mistress of the bourgeois home no longer directed the conversation of men gathered in her home for intellectual discussions but instead was the first and chief educator of her children. Indeed, by the end of the eighteenth century, even advocates for women’s education like Mary Wollstonecraft often based their claims on women’s roles and duties as mothers and the preparation women needed to perform those functions well. It was not mere coincidence that bourgeois households also were the primary market for the new kinds of children’ books and games produced in the eighteenth century. Rising women’s literacy rates in British North America and elsewhere over the eighteenth century are often attributed to the new emphasis on mothers as educators. Yet the bourgeois ideal could also constrain women’s pursuit and application of education. While their roles as educators within the home gained prominence, middle- and upper-class women’s roles outside the home, in the public sphere, were very limited. Yet their status as mothers did provide opportunities to be involved in one public arena: the care and education of children and poor women. This, then, became the area in which women could become publicly active. Marguerite Angélique le Boursier du Coudray became famous for teaching midwifery to women throughout France, while the women’s auxiliary of Madrid’s Patriotic Society of Friends of the Country was active in educational initiatives for poor girls and women and in administering the foundling home. In such cases, women emphasized their own roles as wives, midwives, and mothers to claim public roles. Du Coudray notably adopted the title “Madame” even though she never married. Publication provided another opportunity—a virtual public sphere in which women could participate without physically leaving their homes and domestic duties. Carla Hesse noted that with the transition from a dominantly oral to a dominantly written culture, publishing became an important form of public and intellectual activity for women. Nina Rattner Gelbart likewise noted that du Coudray’s 1759 obstetrical book made “possible her navigation in the public sphere” and marked her “transformation from a humanitarian into a political actor.”16 Yet publishing for women could be a double-edged sword. Gendered expectations and concerns of propriety persisted, in response to which women developed a variety of strategies. These included publishing anonymously and under pseudonyms, especially when venturing beyond traditionally female fields as Shelley Costa found in her examination of women’s contributions to mathematical problems and solutions published in the Lady’s Diary.17 Translations were another area of publishing that allowed women “to publicize their views without the potential danger inherent in original authorship.”18

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FIGURE 5.4: This figure is from the manual on childbirth Abrégé de l’art des accouchements [Summary of the art of childbirth] (1773) written by Angélique Marguerite du Coudray, who also traveled throughout France instructing midwives in person and demonstrating child-delivery practices using a “machine” (cloth models of a pregnant woman’s and newborn’s anatomy). Although French surgeons in the eighteenth century were challenging midwives’ qualifications and abilities, a handwritten note in this copy of Coudray’s book at the Newberry Library indicates that a surgeon owned it. Courtesy John M. Wing Collection, The Newberry Library, Chicago.

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All this suggests that the relationship between education and the developments associated with the growth of the bourgeois public sphere was complex. On one hand, the new culture emphasized education as a marker of status and promoted further education both within the ranks of elites and in society at large. It also prompted serious discussion of educational issues, both in theory and practice, and drove the growth of print culture and new genres, all of which had had far-reaching social effects, not least by creating new demands and uses for literacy. On the other hand, the developing cultural mores retained and in some ways heightened the distinctions that continued to make educational opportunities and the application of education uneven between genders and different socioeconomic groups.

CONCLUSION While the objectives, sites, providers, and recipients of education in the late seventeenth and eighteenth centuries varied widely, education was clearly central to the emerging cultures of both the public and private spheres. While formal education was rarely compulsory or universal, it was increasingly available, including to populations that previously had only limited access to it. Schools were one of the key providers, but religious entities, guilds, charities, and private homes also offered some access to learning, as did an expanded array of printed materials. As suggested by the findings presented here and in chapter 3, families remained critical players in shaping their children’s education, including the learning-through-employment that was often part of it. They were influential even when they did not provide that education directly. Thus, we should be wary of inferring that the expansion of formal education necessarily decreased the family’s role or occurred at the expense of it. It is also important to remember that formal education expanded but was rarely widespread and that enormous differences remained even among those who received some formal education. Gender, class, race, socioeconomic status, and location still largely shaped people’s access to education as well as the type, duration, and purpose of that education. Notwithstanding such differences, writing and mathematical skills joined reading as competencies at the core of many different kinds of education. Such skills were increasingly necessary not only to exercise specific professions but also to understand and participate fully in broader developments of the period. In these and so many other respects, children and families were not only objects of the Enlightenment but also active participants in it.

CHAPTER SIX

Life Cycle mary abbott

The term life cycle dates from the twentieth century but the concept was well established by 1600. William Shakespeare identified seven ages from infancy to “second childishness” (As You Like It Act II Scene vii). His evocation of the “infant mewling and puking in the nurse’s arms” and the ancient, “sans teeth, sans eyes, sans taste, sans everything,” was part of the cultural heritage of the English-speaking world. Eighteenth-century readers encountered Shakespeare thanks to the many editions of his works and, like other long-neglected Shakespeare comedies, As You Like It became a firm favorite in performance, too.1 Some popular pictorial representations of ages used a seven-part classification; others depicted ten stages, each a decade long. Anne Bradstreet’s poem “Of the Four Ages of Man,” written in New England and published in London in 1650, matches ages and seasons. The four-stage model was current over a century later: in 1770, the Mércure de France advertised a suite of prints depicting the four ages of life.2 Abigail Gawthern’s diary illustrates the lived experience of the life cycle. As an affluent woman who lived in the English midlands during the eighteenth century, it is evident that she, her family, and their friends recognized biological and social ages. Birthdays, as chronological markers, were festive occasions shared with family and friends. Mrs. Gawthern was a country house tourist who took vicarious pleasure in the spectacular celebrations of celebrities. An affectionate mother, she notes biological milestones in her children’s lives: Eliza, born June 8, 1788, “had eight teeth before she was nine months

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FIGURE 6.1: Dégrés des Ages. “The Ages of Man” was a popular theme as much in the English-speaking world as on the Continent. Numerous artists portrayed the concept; the details varied, but the shape of the human career from cradle to grave was consistent. Here a fairy, familiar from the Tales of Mother Goose, presides over the cradled infant; an angel summons the aged to judgment. Wellcome Library, London.

old,” and Anna, born January 22, 1784, “began to run alone” on June 9, 1785. Frank’s “first partridges,” shot when he was sixteen, marked the crossing of a social threshold on the way to full adult male status.3 The attention Mrs. Gawthern paid to her children’s small achievements was not uncommon. An American schoolmaster argued that promotion from one reading class to the next merited rewards in cash and kind—a penny (from the father) and two fried eggs (from the mother).4 Before the end of the seventeenth century, children privileged enough to enjoy new shoes could measure their growth as they progressed through the standard sizes from “short” through “boy’s and girl’s thirteens” to adult size one.5 Notes of deaths and funerals, marriages, and, to a lesser extent, births and baptisms dominate Mrs. Gawthern’s diary. These were complex episodes combining biological events with secular and religious rituals. By 1650, the religious geography of Europe had been transformed, and religious allegiance was among the key elements provoking migration across the Atlantic. In September 1792

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as an expression of revolutionary change, civil registration was introduced in France, breaking the link between the newborn’s religious and social identity. Despite this confessional diversity and the variety of rituals that went with it, across the world every new baby, every new couple, and every death changed the contours of family and community. Anthropologists, following Arnold van Gennep, call the ceremonies associated with these transformations rites of passage.6 The human life cycle was not immune from the influence of the Enlightenment. By the middle of the seventeenth century, the activities of medical men, many of them Scots, had begun to shape the experience of women in labor. At the end of the eighteenth century, philosophers’ challenges to the ancien régime in France resulted in revolutionary, if temporary, upsets. And yet the rhythms and routines of birth, coupling, and death were recognizably the same in 1800 as they had been in 1650. According to their means, the families of the newborn, the newly married, and the newly dead provided hospitality for friends and neighbors and distributed mementos.

THE NEWBORN With an heir in prospect, landowners and their ladies set up cradles, acquired linen, and hired nurses. Poor couples dreaded another hungry mouth. European folk tales evoke the desperation of parents who found themselves with too many bellies to fill, and many abandoned babies were born to married parents.7 Slave owners relished a human harvest. Swelling breasts and belly prompted the firmly attached to hasten a planned wedding. Unplanned marriages were arranged under pressure from the mother-to-be, her family, and their neighbors. For a woman whose man did not stand by her, signs of pregnancy were a badge of shame, and it was widely presumed that a woman who concealed her condition and made no preparations for the coming baby intended its death.8 Eighteenth-century anatomists, working alongside engravers and printers, revealed, for the first time, the hidden world of life in the womb as in William Hunter’s The Anatomy of the Human Gravid Uterus Exhibited in Figures, published in 1774. Parallel texts in Latin and English gloss what he refers to in his preface as the “universal language” of images. He chose a format, the elephant folio, that enabled his engraver to render subjects at their “natural size.” Plate VI shows a full-term child: “Every part is represented just as it was found; not so much as one joint of a finger having been moved to show any part more distinctly or to give a more picturesque effect” as the child’s left hand is twisted awkwardly. Later plates show a fetus in the fifth month (XXV), at three months (XXXII), and at two months (XXXIII).

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Most babies were born at home, delivered by the local midwife who had learned her craft on the job. Birth was a neighborly event that took place in the presence of female friends and relatives. French practitioners recorded the positions women adopted in labor, including lying, standing, crouching, kneeling, and sitting on a chair or the lap of another woman.9 Male midwives made inroads on this preserve well before 1700. Obstetrics, like other branches of medicine, was an international project. In 1673, Hugh Chamberlen, a member of a famous dynasty of male midwives, translated Francois Mauriceau’s Traité des malades des femmes grosses (1668), and the ninth English edition came out in 1752. William Smellie, author of a Treatise on the Theory and Practice of Midwifery (1751), gave lectures to male and female students; to demonstrate his techniques, he provided free obstetric services to poor city women.10 Boys, who could pass on the family name, traditions, and possessions, were generally preferred—the third wife of an aristocrat still in desperate quest for an heir was likely to apologize for presenting him with another disappointing daughter.11 Births of national significance left their marks on museum collections. In the middle of the eighteenth century, Dutch potters produced plates with the image of a sturdy baby in a cradle rocked by a female attendant; a bold W is emblazoned on his coverlet. The legend “VIVAT DGVB 1748” indicates it celebrates the arrival of De Graf Count Van Buren, William V, future Stadtholder of the Netherlands.12 Christian baptism (and parallel Jewish ceremonies) incorporated the newborn into the religious environment that did much to shape their worldview. Mrs. Gawthern, whose spelling is, on the whole, conventional, renders “christened” as “christianed” in keeping with the belief that Christians were not born but made. Some theologians taught that humankind was innately sinful.13 The idea that baptism immunized infants against the threat of the perpetual torments that awaited the damned was widespread; it justified midwives’ baptisms of babies who appeared unlikely to survive long enough to be christened by a priest or minister. Yet Mrs. Gawthern and her husband postponed their first child’s christening for six weeks in order to hold it on the anniversary of their wedding the year before.14 This sentimental gesture suggests they may have shared Rousseau’s conviction that “no child who dies before the age of reason will be denied lasting happiness.”15 A christening was an occasion for dressing up and for presents in cash and kind. Birth attendants and wet nurses expected handsome tips. The loglike swaddled infants of wealthy parents were draped in rich embroidered mantles that resembled the palls that would one day cover their coffins. When swaddling went of out fashion, christening robes came in. Too precious for

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everyday use, these garments were passed down the generations. Some christening presents were heirlooms linking the new arrival with earlier generations of the family. The Gawtherns’s son Frank was given “the Archbishop’s silver cup.”16 Given names located the newborn in family, culture, and community. In many places, custom dictated practice. In parts of France and the Netherlands, the firstborn boy was named for his father’s father, the firstborn girl for her mother’s mother. Elsewhere, the eldest child took his father’s name and the eldest girl her mother’s. Material hopes and expectations could also influence choices. Between 1750 and 1767, the Reverend Edmund Nelson and his wife Catherine had eleven children, eight of them boys. Their short-lived firstborn was named for his father and his father’s father. The Nelsons’s second was named to compliment Catherine’s family, the Sucklings, who were richer and much better connected than the Nelsons. The Nelsons’s third and forth sons were christened Maurice and William, after Catherine’s brothers. Lord Walpole of Wolterton, another Horatio, gave his name to the fifth. The sixth was another Edmund, the seventh and youngest George.17 It should not be assumed that the reuse of names was an unfeeling act; the stock was limited, and each carried family meaning. When Catherine died in 1767, her childless brother Maurice stepped in to help her widower launch his children; in 1771, Horatio Nelson joined Captain Suckling’s ship the Raisonnable as a midshipman.18 Foundlings were given new identities to wipe away the stain of abject poverty and, for many, birth out of wedlock. The earliest admitted to the Foundling Hospital in London were given the courtly names of its aristocratic patrons. Churchmen; literary giants, like Geoffrey Chaucer, William Shakespeare, and John Milton; and commanders past and present were commemorated. When Admiral Nelson visited the hospital in 1801, he stood godfather to Baltic Nelson, a tribute to his recent victory at Copenhagen.19 Names served as markers of cultural change. Settlers in New England adopted biblical names, like Joseph and Samuel, in place of old English favorites like William and Henry. American parents, rejoicing in their freedom from the British yoke, called their sons Washington and Franklin after heroes of the Revolution.20 In the early 1790s, at the height of revolutionary enthusiasm in France, parents selected the names of classical heroes like Brutus and contemporary heroes like Marat, Rousseau, and Franklin—a reminder of the intercontinental enthusiasm for the destruction of the old regime.21 Names were reminders of family dramas. For well over a century, Storm, the name chosen for a Dutch boy born in foul weather on his parents’ voyage to New Netherland in 1636, was passed down the generations.22

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SPRINGTIME: CHILDHOOD AND YOUTH The route from the first great rite of passage to the second was long and scattered with lesser but still noteworthy milestones. The offspring of parents who found the notion of maternal breast-feeding alien or distasteful were wet-nursed. Artists in England and on the continent, among them George Morland and Jean-Baptiste Greuze, depicted the baby’s departure and return. A fashionable mother’s visit to her child in the nurse’s humble home gave artists the opportunity to paint an essay in contrasts. For many small children, separation from the accustomed breast and the familiar setting was, surely, a traumatic life mark. Assumptions about gender roles made it inevitable that the paths taken by boys and girls should diverge. Girls remained in skirts; boys were put into breeches (with some ceremony in well-off families). Where cost was not a major issue, breeching roughly coincided with the onset of dependable continence; in poor families where new clothes were an unheard-of luxury, boys had to wait until suitable garments became available. Boys went into the workshop and the fields, and girls stayed indoors. The boys’ road branched: while the landlord’s son accompanied his father as he rode his estate, the laborer’s lad worked as a scarecrow protecting the landlord’s crops. But while a six- or seven-year-old could contribute to the family economy through his earnings, it is evident that some working environments were not designed for small children. Difficult family circumstances forced Jack Cremer to sea at eight, too small to get into his hammock or up on deck unaided. “The dead weight of five small children” on his family propelled young William Hutton into a silk mill.23 Although Jack Cremer wrote a lively autobiography and William Hutton became a noted local historian, neither acquired the command of Latin, written and spoken, essential in candidates for the intellectual club to which the male elites of the Western world had aspired since Renaissance times. In 1664, Edward Browne, newly graduated from Cambridge, went to Paris to further his medical education. After one lecture, he confided to his journal that he was “much disappointed” by the amount of French used in the classroom; he had expected Latin. The assumption that not only academics but gentlemen should master Latin language and culture was persistent. As a signal to his nine-yearold son that he was entering this exclusive society, Lord Chesterfield wrote to him in Latin, ended his letter with the traditional “Vale” (farewell) and dated it in the Roman style, “Kalend. Maii 1741.”24 Admission to fraternities such as universities and craft associations was a protracted business; several years elapsed before the student or apprentice

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achieved full membership. George Colman saw the shift from school to college as “a grand incident” in his life. In 1779, in half an hour and thanks to the ministrations of the barber, he “metamorphosed into a man, by means of powder, pomatum, the comb, the curling tongs and a bit of black ribbon to make a pig-tail.” This transformation was a prelude to his formal entry into the University of Oxford. Young Colman, as was customary, signed his praenomen in Latin: “I wrote therefore Georgeius—thus alas! Inserting a redundant e and, after a pause, said inquiringly to the Vice-Chancellor . . . Pray, sir, am I to add Colmanus?” His father, himself an Oxford man, “blushed at my ignorance.” Although a tiny handful of moderns—men of international eminence such as Erasmus—were afforded the accolade of a Latinate surname, such pretension in a boy fresh from school was risible.25 Graduation ceremonies were followed by private treats of wine. The apprentice, furnished with a premium by his sponsor—father, guardian, or charitable foundation—was bound to his master for a period of years during which he became fluent in the skills and language of his trade.26 In due course, having served his time, he celebrated his new status as master craftsman with his fellows. Many a man who had mastered his craft lacked the means to set up in business on his own account and joined the ranks of journeymen, hired by the day. Although imperfectly synchronized with these important social milestones, twenty-first birthdays had a particular significance as the moment when men and unmarried women achieved a legal identity. When Abigail Frost came of age, legacies awaited her, along with the portion set aside for her dead sister and heirlooms left by her great-uncle Thomas Secker, Archbishop of Canterbury. A quarter of a century later, as Mrs. Gawthern, she noted “the great rejoicings” that accompanied the coming of age of the fifth Duke of Rutland, who had been duke for very nearly twelve years.27 We know from his family’s account books that the lavish hospitality at Haddon Hall included a dinner for 70 gentlemen, a ball for 130 guests, a feast for 250 tenants, and entertainments for “the populace,” estimated at ten thousand head. “All who wished to be drunk were.”28 When her son Harry came of age—or, as she put it, “commence[d] a man” in October 1778—Martha Pattenson joked that “it must be some years before HP will arrive at discretion.”29 Emotional maturity was not the only issue. At a time when inheritance was a major determinant of rank and wealth, there were frequent discrepancies between chronological and social age. For Nathaniel Curzon, born in 1751—whose father’s spectacular new house at Kedleston Mrs. Gawthern had visited on several occasions—coming of age was of little material significance since he did not inherit the Scarsdale

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FIGURE 6.2: The Prodigal Son Feasted on His Return. John Fairburn, London, 1794.

The image of the prodigal son was common; lengthy waits for inheritances and plentiful resources led to idleness and excess, followed, according to this stereotype, by celebratory reconciliations. Nathaniel Curzon, who fled the country to escape his creditors, remained abroad until his father’s death—there was no reconciliation.

title or estates until he was fifty-six, twice married, and the father of ten children.30 The Swiss psychiatrist Carl Jung commented that men whose social puberty was prolonged found it hard to behave like adults. Nathaniel Curzon’s biography certainly supports Jung’s contention: his gaming debts drove him into exile.31

THE NEW COUPLE For many men and women, particularly in northwestern Europe and its settlements, marriage in their mid- or later twenties marked their real coming of age. The sharply differentiated upbringings of boys and girls produced, at least in theory, adults with complementary qualities. Compatibility of rank, religion, and culture were expected in a couple embarking on a lifelong commitment. For, while divorce or annulment was possible everywhere in the Western world by 1700, it remained difficult and rare. However, when divorce was made easy

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FIGURE 6.3: John and Betty. London: C. Sheppard, n.d. Even for working class couples,

prudence was the watchword in courtship rituals. The choice of husband or wife was a key decision, of interest to family, friends, and the wider community. The milkmaid Betty has put down her buckets, but keeps her distance; a woman who engaged in inappropriate behavior put her reputation and her marriage prospects at risk.

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in France in 1792, there was a “sudden rush” of petitions, an indication of the moribund state of many marriages in eighteenth-century Europe.32 Marriage was not a private commitment between two people but a matter of acute concern to family, friends, and the wider community. The marriage of the heir to a noble estate was a key episode in the family business and, therefore, something to plan with extreme care. An alliance with an heiress could transform the family fortune; the self-indulgent choice of a bride with an inadequate dowry was perceived as a crime against past, present, and future generations. Thus, “What will she bring? is the first enquiry. How many acres or how much ready coin?”33 Ample funds compensated for many shortcomings: “No woman can be old that’s wealthy.” Negotiations were often long and hard. This was true not only among the landed elite. The burghers of prosperous provincial towns were as cautious and hardheaded. In England, the Norfolk bigwig Philip Case held out “above two years” before he agreed to allow his daughter and heiress Pleasance to marry Thomas Bagge. Money and political allegiances were evidently at the root of his reluctance.34 John Hunter, surgeon and anatomist, and his bride waited until “his affairs could be sufficiently arranged to admit of his marrying,” which took seven years.35 Money was a factor in peasant marriage, too. In 1761, Greuze’s painting of the moment when the bride-to-be’s father hands over her dowry was the hit of the season. The father is a comfortably well-off peasant—there is ample bread on his shelf, brass utensils in his cupboard, and coins in the purse he presents to his future son-in-law. A notary has been hired to record the transaction. The hen and chicks in the foreground of the kitchen scene signify both the new couple’s hoped-for brood and the family’s lack of pretensions to politesse.36 Poor but ambitious commoners held to the maxims that “if she does not bring a fortune, she may help to make one,” and “he that would thrive must ask his wife.” A promise to marry was a serious undertaking: the betrothed, although not yet married, were no longer single. Rings were traditionally given to sweethearts and brides. The widely used clasped hands and pairs of cooing doves that appear in eighteenth-century French pattern books symbolized the couple’s devotion. Mottos spelled out this message: A loving wife, a happy life. I have obtained what God ordained. Death only parts united hearts.37 Thanks to their curiosity value, a surprising number of other love tokens have survived. They are often decorative—but usable—versions of everyday

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objects, and many were homemade. Some relate to crafts, others to household tasks. Where women made bobbin lace, their suitors gave them fancy bobbins sometimes engraved with their names. When women knitted in Spain, France, the Low Countries, and Britain, their admirers made sheaths to hold their needles. Washing bats, designed for use on riverbanks, were used as love tokens in Norway and the Netherlands. The baton de lit, for smoothing featherbeds, was a popular gift in France. Hand-carved wooden stay busks were common presents in England, although it is not clear whether women actually used them to stiffen their bodices—lacking the flexibility of whalebone, they would have been excruciatingly uncomfortable. Shoe-shaped wooden snuff boxes were sold in pairs.38 The museum caption describing a pottery shoeshaped snuff box with the inscription “I:W 1763” reads, rather archly, “The presence of Cupid suggests that the shoe was an amatory gift.”39 The decorative love spoon is associated with Wales—the oldest dated example in the National Museum of Wales was made in 1667—but love spoons are also found in England, Switzerland, and Scandinavia.40 Many of these items—stay busks, batons de lit, shoe-shaped snuff boxes, knitting sheaths, and love spoons— suggest a spooning embrace hinting at the sexual dimensions of courtship and marriage. A wedding was an occasion for feasting, congratulations, and gifts. By the middle of the eighteenth century, white had become the fashionable color for the bride’s outfit. Guests wore favors; at lavish weddings, hundreds of extravagant and extraordinarily costly confections of ribbon were handed out.41 Commemorative rings might be distributed. Those made for the marriage of the British king George III and his German bride bore the motto “George and Charlotte United: 1761”; the rings to mark the marriage of his younger brother, the Duke of York, and Frederica of Prussia were inscribed “Soyeux Heureux” (Be Happy). Female guests at the wedding of Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette received rings set with miniature portraits of the couple.42 Plebeian marriages could be rowdy affairs. The verse account of The Collier’s (Coalminer’s) Wedding, written around 1730 by Edward Chicken, a schoolteacher and parish clerk in Newcastle in the north of England, was popular on both sides of the Atlantic. At the collier’s wedding, bridesmaids and groomsmen accompany the happy couple—along with a “vast promiscuous crowd/With thundering tongues and feet as loud” who “toss up their hats, clap hands and hollow.” “When they’re in decent order got/the priest proceeds to tie the knot.” Even before the priest has received his fee, the bridegroom’s cronies have snatched his new wife’s garters and are parading them round the church.43

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Marriage, as the language of the religious ceremonies makes clear, was ordained by God for the purpose of peopling his world. Until the marriage was consummated, it was not complete. The religious ceremony over, the stage was set for sex. On November 4, 1677, a date chosen because it was his and his mother’s birthday, the Dutch prince William of Orange married his cousin Mary. Edward Lake, the English princess’s tutor and chaplain, recorded events in his diary: “At nine o’clock at night the marriage was solemnized. . . . At eleven o’clock they went to bed and his majesty [Charles II] came and drew the curtains and said to the prince, ‘Now nephew, to your work! Hey! St George for England.’ ”44 William and Mary failed to deliver the hoped-for heir. Mary’s sister Anne endured seventeen pregnancies but left no living child. This crisis of late Stuart fertility helped shape the future of Britain and her colonies in North America. Fifty years later in the humbler setting of the collier’s cottage, “The posset made, the bride is led/In great procession to her bed”: Between the sheets now view this pair, And think what merry work was there; The stocking thrown, the crowd all gone, And Tom and Jenny left alone . . . Now he’s the master of his wishes Treats Jenny with a thousand kisses. And hopes, no doubt, her heart to glad With—nine months hence—a thumping lad.45 Before the end of the century, a medical scientist had intervened in the business of conception. John Hunter, who died in 1793, supervised the first known instance of artificial human insemination.46 In most Western states, the law of marriage had been tidied up in the sixteenth century. Not so in England where, until 1754, a private promise to marry with immediate effect remained as binding as vows made in public. More secure than a union that depended on her word against his was an irregular private marriage recorded by a clergyman. In London, the Mayfair Chapel, the Savoy Chapel, and the areas around the Fleet Prison were notorious for these clandestine marriages. Often perceived as the resort of adventurers with designs on heiresses and sailors, who might have wives in other ports, these quick, cheap, and simple ceremonies were the choice of many poorer London couples. The register kept by the Reverend Mr. Sweetapple, whose Nottinghamshire parish had only eleven resident families in 1743, shows that

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hundreds of couples, overwhelmingly from the locality, opted to travel to Fledborough to be married at a time of their choice with a minimum of fuss.47 Fanny Burney’s exclamations over Pleasance Case’s wedding, which she and her family’s genteel visitors watched from the Burneys’s windows, suggest why: “The walk that leads up to the church was crowded almost incredibly—a prodigious mob indeed! I’m sure I trembled for the bride. O what a gauntlet for any woman of delicacy to run.”48 In northwestern Europe and its settlements, first marriages generally resulted in new households. In some regions to the south, the new couple was normally incorporated into an existing household, frequently headed by the groom’s father and perhaps already housing a married brother along with his wife and children.49 Men and women spent much longer with small children in their households than they generally do today. A couple married in their twenties who survived until the end of the wife’s fertile years might produce seven or eight children. The use of wet nurses by aristocratic women, who often married in their teens, led to families that were twice as large. And a man who took several fertile brides in succession might find himself the father of two dozen and still have toddlers around his feet in his seventies. Marriage was not a universal experience. Priests, monks, and nuns embraced celibacy, and by the end of the eighteenth century there were convents in America and Canada. Significant numbers of lay people remained single, not necessarily by choice. For women, the prospects of marriage were greatest on the frontiers of European settlement, where they were in short supply. There was a clear gender divide: bachelors remained prospective husbands until the day they died while women from the upper and middle ranks dwindled into old maids before they were out of their twenties. Arthur Murphy described his play The Old Maid (1761) as a “comedy of errors.” The old maid is, of course, the butt of the joke in a case of mistaken identity; a naïve youth wrongly assumes the worn-looking middle-aged woman is married and the pretty young thing single. The old maid is berated for her “peevish humors,” sour looks, and temper. Health and temper permitting, a woman in service had a longer possibility of marriage. A canny widower might well opt for a competent housekeeper past breeding and so avoid the tensions generated by a second family.

DEATH Premature mortality played havoc with the presumption that birth and death would be separated by decades. Holbein’s Dance of Death, first published

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in 1538, was still in print in 1800. The seventy-two colored plates Thomas Rowlandson designed for The English Dance of Death (1815–1816) rehearse Holbein’s message in modern dress: death is no respecter of age, rank, or character. The accompanying doggerel rams the message home. “Death rocks the cradle”; Death’s dart fells “the Careful and the careless,” the good man, the glutton, the sot, the miser and the debtor, the pickpocket, and “the flogging pedagogue.” Skeletal Death “waits to write [his] Lordship’s name” on the pedigree rolls recording his long descent. The amateur jockey riding at breakneck speed, the young lady “rich and fair” with many suitors, and the guardian in hot pursuit of his eloping ward and her lover are his victims. Death’s dance is not invariably destructive, and the schoolboys and survivors of the miser and the lecherous guardian take pleasure from his visits. Every age or stage in the life cycle carried its own peculiar risks. Birth was a dangerous experience for mother and child. Women feared death from fever, blood poisoning, or hemorrhage. As a last resort, babies were drawn from the womb in fragments and the ruins of mother and child were buried together. Neglect, misguided cosseting, and poor hygiene cut lives short. In hot weather, diarrhea killed many babies.

FIGURE 6.4: From Thomas Rowlandson, The English Dance of Death, 2 vols. (London:

Rudolph Ackerman, 1815, 1816). Like other artists who explored this theme, Rowlandson showed Death catching his victims unawares, engaged in everyday activities— even during the dancing lessons that were an important part of a young girl’s training.

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Working environments were hazardous. The Italian Bernardino Ramazinni published his pioneering treatise on occupational diseases in 1700. In his view, miners and those who worked with metals—including potters, who glazed their wares with lead, and the makers of mirrors, who used mercury—were the most vulnerable. Industrial injuries must be added to the tally of hazards he identified. More soldiers and sailors died of disease than in battle. Countrymen and women and their children ran risks from quagmires, rotten bridges spanning deep dikes, high winds, fire, scalding water, savage dogs, bolting and shying horses, goring cattle, dangerous farm machinery, and wheeled vehicles that threatened the lives of passengers and passers-by. Falls—from stool, ladders, down stairs, and even into a family vault—were risks survived or narrowly avoided.50 In De Senectute, On Old Age (44 b.c.e.), Cicero (the eighteenth century knew him as Tully) celebrated the satisfaction offered by that honorable stage, “the last scene in the play,” to intellectual and farmer alike.51 Eighteenth-century medics were less sanguine. George Cheyne’s Essay on Health and Long Life (1725) paints a gloomy picture of those who were “passing off the stage”: “rheums, catarrhs, wind and collicks, loss of memory and senses . . . aches and pains” were among “that dismal and bleak train of miseries that wait on a long life.” Cheyne’s prescription was to go to bed, keep warm, and consume “a thin, poor, low, light and meagre diet” that would “make the passage easy and calm as a taper that goes out for want of fuel.”52 Like birth and the consummation of marriage, death generally occurred in a domestic setting with family and friends close by. At a well-conducted deathbed, farewells were said, advice was given, and property (if any) was assigned. Witnesses of an exemplary death learned a spiritual lesson. The tolling of the bell alerted the wider community. Devices hung outside the houses of gentry and nobility and informed those literate in the language of heraldry of the lineage of the deceased.53 Death was a universal event but not a universal experience, whether considered from the perspective of the dying or that of their survivors. Differences reflected the manner of death and the age, rank, and role of the dying. Christians could hope for heaven. God-deniers were destined for hell and never-ending torture worse than nature could inflict or man devise. Spanish artist Francisco Goya portrayed St. Francis Borja at the deathbed of an intransigent sinner. While the blood of Christ spurts from the crucifix in the saint’s hand, leering demons bide their time.54 The timing and style of funerals reflected the culture, wealth, and rank of the deceased. Jewish funerals took place at once. Weeks might elapse between the death and burial of a Christian noble. As Mrs. Gawthern noted in

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her diary, the Duke of Kingston died at Bath on September 23, 1773. “His remains were deposited in St. James’ church at Bath till preparations could be made for his interment in the family vault” several counties away (those with the means to achieve it chose to be buried close to kin). He was buried on October 19; “minute guns were fired . . . to the number of 61, his Grace’s age.” In the case of a monarch, months were needed. The funeral of Louis XIV was held at Saint-Dénis fifty-three days after his death. The church was decorated by Jean Berain, stage designer to the court. He used traditional reminders of mortality—skeletons holding hourglasses and wielding scythes—alongside classical motifs. He created pavilions in which he hung paintings celebrating Louis’s virtues and achievements: he had outlawed the duel, destroyed heresy through his assaults on the Huguenots, and given Spain a king.55 Christian communities ensured a decent, if austere, funeral for paupers. Well-off families provided feasts and favors for friends and charity for the needy. Printed invitations came into vogue and could be either commissioned for a particular ceremony or bought off the shelf with blanks for the name of the deceased and the time and place of the ceremony. There was a growing preference for private funerals free from the control of the clergy or the heralds—as there was for private baptisms and weddings. Favors, including durable items such as mourning rings, were distributed to family and friends. Tastes changed. In the middle of the eighteenth century, the death’s head—the skull and crossed bones—gave way to, for example, a weeping willow worked in hair and set in crystal. Legends such as “Not lost but gone before to Bliss” replaced the ominous “Remember to die.”56 The church punished those guilty of grave impiety, including self-murder, by denying them burial in consecrated ground. Men conditioned to see themselves as honorary Romans could justify “willed death” as a rational choice. George Cheyne, the Scots physician, wrote of suicide as The English Malady (1733), but a similar trend can be discerned in France. To enable burial in consecrated ground, these deaths were frequently explained as accidents or manifestations of insanity. A handful of free-thinking men, among them John Baskerville, the Birmingham printer chosen by William Hunter to produce his Anatomy of the Human Gravid Uterus, opted to be buried in unconsecrated ground.57 In their eagerness to obtain an adequate supply of anatomical specimens for teaching and research, surgeons like the Hunters challenged the sanctity of the grave. It was a winter trade; the corpses of the poor, buried in common pits, were the most vulnerable.58 Most graves were unmarked or had wooden markers that wore away. Memorials cut in slate or stone hymned the virtues of the propertied, and magnificent monuments depicted the celebrated, the powerful, and the cherished children of

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men and women who could afford to mark their passing. Benjamin Franklin’s son Francis died of smallpox when he was four. His father, who bitterly regretted that he had not had him inoculated, saw to it that the inscription on his gravestone read “The DELIGHT of all that knew him.” At Ashborne in Derbyshire, Penelope Boothby, who died when she was five, is shown asleep. The texts for her monument chosen by Penelope’s father displayed both his grief and his cultivated taste. There are inscriptions in English, Latin, French, and Italian. Revolution overturned custom. The craftsman Charles Dusson, who died in the assault on the Bastille on July 14, 1789, was among the plebeian heroes of liberty whose admirers subscribed to give him a funeral fit for an aristocrat.

FIGURE 6.5: Key to the Coke monuments, St. Mary Church, Tittleshall, Norfolk. Robert Coke bought the manor of Tittleshall in the 1530s. Long after the building of their palace at Holkham, fifteen miles away, senior members of the family were brought to this small village church for burial in the Coke vault. Their monuments would not be out of place in St Paul’s Cathedral. By permission of the churchwardens, St. Mary Church.

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In July 1791, the remains of the arch-infidel Voltaire, which had been hustled into a secret grave in the provinces, were led in triumph to the Pantheon, the temple of fame. For over a thousand years, Saint-Denis had been the burial place of French kings. In 1793, their remains were removed and consigned to mass graves. Family identities were respected—Valois was cast into the quicklime with Valois, Bourbon with Bourbon. The lead from the coffins was requisitioned to make armaments. Their monuments were preserved to provide an education in sculptural history.59

CONCLUSION The ages of man was a durable theme. Samuel Pepys owned a print of “The historie of the life of man,” published in 1616. Two hundred years later, there was a market for images of the stages of life on both sides of the Atlantic. Very often the Christian rites of passage, baptism, marriage, and burial are illustrated. Side by side, boy and girl and man and woman mount the steps, marrying in their twenties, parents by thirty, in their prime in their forties. The fifty-year-olds, afflicted by the “incurable disease of old age,” start their descent to the grave. As we have seen, premature death frequently interrupted the anticipated steady progress from birth to death in serene old age. In the upper ranks of Western society, the death of a child could lead to the extinction of a dynasty. For example, the death of Queen Anne’s eleven-year-old son William in 1700 opened the way for the Hanoverian succession. And to professional men— merchants, farmers, and craftsman—concerned with passing their names, enterprises, and culture onto the next generation, the loss of an heir was a similarly devastating blow. For the dependent child, the early death of a parent could be catastrophic. Some orphans thrived thanks to the care of a surviving parent or grandparent, an uncle or an aunt, or an older sibling. But whether they remained in the family household or were cast out, the fatherless and motherless were vulnerable. Although there were benevolent exceptions, the malice of stepmothers was legendary. The maidservant out of place, without a family to turn to, was in danger of slipping into prostitution. When their life histories are examined, a high proportion of the minority of literate laborers had their education cut short when their fathers died. Benjamin Bangs, son of a wealthy Norfolk farmer, was orphaned as a little boy. His inheritance lost, he was apprenticed to a local shoemaker. Calculations suggest that one child in eight was fatherless by the age of seven.60 These lotteries, faced by families and children, were harsh facts in the life cycle before 1650 and after 1850.

CHAPTER SEVEN

The State steven king

Discerning the influence of the state on the construction, experience, interpretation, and representation of childhood and family specifically during the Enlightenment is complicated. The 150 years between 1650 and 1800 witnessed the continuance or reinterpretation of older legal codes and sociocultural attitudes to the family and childhood. The period also generated specific influences on the family. These reflected intertwining processes included intellectual reinvention, industrialization, proletarianization, and state formation and governance. The changing boundaries of the European states and the formation and subsequent independence of the American colonies are familiar and do not need rehearsing here. Other processes that set the backdrop to this chapter require more detailed elaboration, however. The first is the intellectual and practical agenda of the Enlightenment itself, which shaped the relationship between state and family in three major ways. First, it privileged developments in areas we have now come to regard as properly and practically the remit of the state—literacy, the provision of welfare, the regularization of the marriage process (in preference to the church), the protection of inviolable private property, and the promotion of liberty. While enabling, protective, or clarifying legislation in many of these areas had to await the nineteenth century, the Enlightenment set the foundational boundaries of where the state could and should intervene. Secondly, the Enlightenment— with its questioning of traditional institutions, customs, and morals—provided a new conceptual agenda through which the state could define its relationship

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with families. The officials of enlightenment states, informed by values such as natural rights, the malleability of social problems, individualism, and evidencebased practice, diligently adopted the impetus of classification and categorization to better understand the existing family forms and relationships and the nature of the boundaries within which the family functioned. Informed by similar values, many families sought to change their place by migration and emigration. Finally, though not uncontentiously in the secondary literature, the Enlightenment provided a new rationale for the family in the eyes of the state. The degree to which the ideals of affective family relationships, the shading of patriarchy, and a better understanding of childhood became lived realities in enlightenment Europe can easily be exaggerated. However, the study of diaries and letters does suggest that the private milieu of the family, so privileged in enlightenment philosophy, witnessed considerable emotional, physical, situational, and gendered change in the period between 1650 and 1800. The family, in other words, became in concept and practice much more of a melting pot for the citizens of the enlightenment state. A second process was the rise of the information state. The European states and American colonies had radically different starting points in terms of their understanding of, and infrastructure for, collecting information on issues such as the national and regional economy, population size and distribution, and urbanization. Partly this reflected different models of the way in which the state governed. Such models ranged from the highly localized and “bewilderingly complex” governance model of the British fiscal state through direct or devolved colonial government to the French estates and aristocratic governmental system.1 The Enlightenment, particularly at its later extreme, was to see radical and now familiar change to systems of governance. However, all European states and their colonies had in common a progressive attempt to expand the reach and depth of the information state.2 Whether this process involved national and regional censuses, as in France and Sweden; surveillance of immigrant groups, as in Britain; or minute detailing of the scale and composition of trade, as in the American colonies, what is certain is that the reach of the information state spread inexorably prior to its reaching critical mass in the nineteenth century. For the family this process had profound effects. It allowed state officials to understand the distribution of people and to plan and implement policies that would, in effect, shape the nature and age markers of childhood, the possibilities of marriage, and the nature of migration. The third broad process was the constant search of enlightenment states for an enlarged and enlivened array of levers of power, allied to an analogous tinkering with the nature, intent, and structure of legal systems. The differences

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between the European legal systems—particularly between that of Britain and the continent—and the anomalous position of the American colonies are wellknown.3 However, such differences have often led historians to overlook a shared enlightenment experience. In this, the law and, by extension, the state came to occupy a more prominent place both directly in family life and in shaping the activities and experiences (residence, identity, belonging, apprenticeship, etc.) that gave color and texture to that life. A key lever of power during the Enlightenment was the welfare system, and a fourth broad process was an attempt to codify and systematize welfare provision. The uniqueness of England and Wales with their national tax-funded Old Poor Law has often been overstated; the Swiss Cantons and Sweden had similar systems, as did some American states. However, it is certainly true that the Old Poor Law represented one end of an organizational and experiential spectrum. The other end might be represented by Scotland, with its churchbased alms system.4 France, with its institutional provision supplemented by the philanthropic activities of nobles and religious groups in the provinces alongside extraordinary national relief when particular crises struck, perhaps represents a core European model. However they were organized, a key feature of these welfare systems in the enlightenment period was their extended reach and the scale of their resources as poverty came to be—in the eyes of some enlightenment thinkers and statesmen, at least—both explicable and remediable. In turn, and as demonstrated in the following, welfare as a key state function was crucial in shaping experiences of family life.5 A final characteristic of all European states is that they all failed, despite vigorous attempts in the case of the Low Countries and France, to suppress the development of national markets in news and rumor. The latter part of the Enlightenment in particular was to see an explosion of printed works—above all, newspapers. This brought something that might be constructed as recognizable “public opinion.”6 The impact of these developments on states and their operation was increasingly profound, even if the tumultuous effects were not felt until the nineteenth century. There were equally profound effects on the family, with the middling and elite groups in many states now provisioned with a better understanding of, and an increasing interest in commenting on, the conduct of family life for the working classes. Indeed, it is possible to argue that the rise of national debate on the family is a key condition of understanding this period. Thereby, discussion of the family came to be tied into wider enlightenment debates about the proper role of the state; the duties of governors and those governed; the ability to remediate social problems; and the nature, use, and limits of knowledge.

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Inscribed into this broad framework of overlapping processes is a variety of incidental ways in which European states in their local, regional, and national manifestations influenced how the family and childhood were defined, experienced, and represented. Some of these will be familiar from other chapters. Most European states sought to establish and enforce regulations over the apprenticeship process. Where the state was in partnership with guilds and other formalized organizations such as trading companies—particularly, for instance, in the Low Countries—such regulation could have longevity. More generally, toward the end of the Enlightenment the system was breaking down throughout Europe and America.7 Apprenticeship was one measurement of when childhood began and ended. It could also fundamentally alter household structures, particularly in England or America, where short birth intervals might mean the departure of several children to apprenticeship within a short period. Legislation on criminal responsibility could also define and shape childhood and color familial gender relations. In England and America, for instance, the complex nature of such laws meant that women, children, and youths could claim to stand outside the law. This led to impassioned debates about when childhood ended, the proper form of female behavior, and the relationship between the working-class male and power within the family.8 Tax policies might have an equally strong impact on the nature of family life and organization. In France, Prussia, England, and the Nordic states, taxes on property, windows, and chimneys/hearths during the Enlightenment certainly influenced the nature of domestic architecture and the living arrangements of families. In areas where variants of the peasant production system remained entrenched, taxation policies and levels vied with inheritance as core drivers of new household formation, residential complexity, and age at leaving home. Other incidental aspects of state activity could have had considerable effects on the family and the kinship system. Every European state had some variant of a settlement system that sought to define legally and practically where someone belonged. Particularly in the Habsburg Empire, the Low Countries, and England and Wales, where such systems had a strong legal identity, the position of single women, illegitimate children, economic migrants, and the aged could be fragile and contested. This led to unstable household systems and weaker proximate kinship patterns.9 Paradoxically, state attitudes toward the money supply could also have consequences for the structure and experience of families. Swiss and Italian migrants, for instance, worked throughout Europe and supported relatively large and complex family forms in their place of origin through valuable remittances, similar to the Irish in the nineteenth century. Migrants within countries could also be part of the remittance system.

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In countries such as England, where the state did little to maintain or increase the circulation of small change, these sorts of remittance structures were much more uncommon.10 For the English, at least, this meant that the fact of children leaving home was a more definitive and less reversible event than it was for families on the continent or in America. Arguably, the lack of a fluid monetary system until the last years of the Enlightenment may have contributed to England’s relatively distinctive simple nuclear family system. Themes like these are clearly worthy of more attention than they can be given here. However, this chapter focuses on more direct relationships between state activity or inactivity and the experience, construction, and understanding of childhood and the family.

THE MACRO ROLE OF THE STATE A number of basic macro roles exemplify and shape the relationship between state, individuals, and families in this period. Some of these roles will be familiar from other chapters and do not need detailed elaboration. The state shaped the possibilities of testamentary practice (especially in cases where the deceased made no will or formal assignment of property and power) by creating a host of effects for family formation and for the definitions of the age of majority and of intergenerational relationships, exemplified perhaps by the family gathering portrayed in Figure 7.1. Most European states also actively managed

FIGURE 7.1: A family of many generations gather round a table to hear a reading of a will. Anonymous engraving, n.d. Wellcome Trust Reference ICV No. 39289.

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trade policy, with important effects for the gender composition of the family labor force, the nature and longevity of child labor, and the material culture and aspirations of new household units. Other macro roles require a more detailed elaboration. The first was war. It is understood from the literature that the Enlightenment was a period of sustained war for the purposes of conquest or rebellion. This experience had a marked and long-lasting impact on families and family life. Some of the consequences are obvious. While the attitude of European states to standing armies and mercenary forces varied radically, the fighting of wars inevitably lead to the formation of domestic militias, intensified recruitment into the regular forces, and pressing ordinary citizens into the army and navy. Indeed, in some European states the duty to bear arms when told to do so by landowners remained very much a reality throughout the Enlightenment. Recruitment mechanisms of this sort could denude villages, port cities, and town neighborhoods of young men, with indirect consequences for the local marriage market, the viability of both nuclear and stem families, and the nature of the kinship networks that supported young children. There are few reliable estimates of the scale and geographic foci of recruitment on the European stage. However, newspaper accounts and poor law records for some English communities suggest that upwards of thirty percent of the local male population (married and single) in some cities and towns could simply disappear in a matter of weeks at the onset of war. Some of these men eventually returned crippled and, thus, unable to take up their economic roles again, as illustrated in Figure 7.2, with consequences for the balance of power in the household, the ability to cope in old age, and the role of coresident sons and daughters. Others returned after a considerable absence only to find their wives had remarried or moved away; such absences were a common defense against the charge of bigamy. Many of those recruited to fight the wars of the Enlightenment would not return. The scale of mortality occasioned by direct military action is ultimately unquantifiable and has probably been overstated, but a figure of some 1.5 million might not be far from the mark for the period as a whole. Deaths of this sort, especially when originating in one locality, often prompted the reconstellation of families through remarriage or, in the stem family system, a reorganization of the economic pecking order, creating new kinship relationships and revitalizing others. For the countries or areas (such as Ireland, Switzerland, and Hesse) that provided the overwhelming majority of the mercenaries who were the core of Enlightenment armies, these effects were even more fiercely felt.

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FIGURE 7.2: “The Sailor’s Progress.” An old sailor with a wooden leg relates his adven-

tures to a family. Engraving by G. Cruickshank, 1818. Wellcome Trust Reference ICV No. 49958.

The military policies of the European states also had more indirect consequences for the experience of family life. It has become commonplace of the secondary literature, for instance, that more population damage occurred through the movement and billeting of armies and by the demands of invading forces than in battles. Diseases of association and dearth certainly followed armies, and the domestic militia could cut a swath through local populations, sometimes requiring the wholesale refiguring of communities and the family architecture that underpinned them. Military action also tended to be associated with rising illegitimacy and mass population movements, illustrated forcibly in Figure 7.3, which forced the temporary and permanent fracturing of families. Even in Britain, which saw no large-scale or uninvited invasion

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FIGURE 7.3: A gypsy family resting after a long journey to avoid the war. Engraving by

Franco Pedro, n.d. Wellcome Trust Reference ICV No. 39252.

during the period, preparations for war and the maintenance of a large domestic militia for much of the eighteenth century had a notably disruptive impact on the continuity of family life. This is evidenced by the stories of paupers as recounted in settlement examinations or appeals for welfare. While the military predisposition of the state could have sudden and important ramifications for the nature of family life, other macro roles arguably had a more continuous and fundamental influence. Thus, as well as regulating inheritance, most European states also sought to influence the nature of landholding and the degree of access to land and thereby, for much of our period, to household formation. In the case of Britain, for instance, implicit government support for the aspiration of landholding among American colonists can be contrasted with active state support (through private acts of Parliament and then via more general enclosure legislation) for extinguishing the residual rights of ordinary laboring people on the land. This process was incomplete in 1800, but it had already generated far-reaching effects on the gender distribution of earning in the family economy, the economic role of children, and the nature of household formation. In Prussia, exactly the opposite process can

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be observed, with the state seeking to manage the rising demand for land by elaborating the legal apparatus for subtenancy and binding retirement contracts implicit in the heurlinger system. Such interventions bolstered the status of stem and complex family systems, of the sort illustrated in Figure 7.4, and imposed new sets of expectations and obligations on children, which shaped the experience and understanding of childhood itself. And, of course, peasant landholding, with all it implied for the inevitable and often early migration of daughters and younger sons, still dominated the landholding structure of much of enlightenment Europe.11 The industrial policies of states also had fundamental consequences for the experience of childhood and the nature and structure of family life. While the impact of industrialization on the family is considered elsewhere in this volume, it is important to return to the theme here. Without exception, though certainly to different degrees, the European states and the American colonies actively fostered industrialization as de facto state policy.12 This might take the form, as in the Low Countries, of direct subsidies for foreign entrepreneurs to establish factories and protofactories or, in England’s worsted industry, the wholesale implantation of a foreign workforce. Alternatively, states could foster technology transfer—as did Sweden in the iron industry and England in the

FIGURE 7.4: A peasant family in an Italian farm house. Engraving by F. Bartolozzi, n.d. Wellcome Trust Reference ICV No. 18421.

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cloth dying trade—or offer direct incentives (prizes, grants, and tax rebates) for private domestic entrepreneurs to explore new branches of existing trades. There is not space to develop these themes here, but what is important is that industrialization did not just happen; the industrial policies of the European states or their local and regional representatives were crucial components in this picture. How far state policies worked, and if they did work, how far industrialization affected European families, is a moot point. Francois Hendrickx demonstrated convincingly that even in Flanders—the archetype of the European protoindustrialization process—family size and structure, age at marriage, and age of children leaving home responded at best modestly to the hypothetical opportunities for earlier household formation offered by industrial earning.13 Yet in iron-making and mining communities there does seem to have been a strong link between industrial work, larger family sizes, higher kinship density, complexity of families, and the occupational endogamy of sons in particular.14 A further macro role for the state, immigration and emigration policy also affected the nature and experience of family life. It would be misleading to suggest that, with the sole exception of the autonomous Swiss Cantons, enlightenment states had the sort of nationwide policies that characterized the nineteenth century. Nonetheless, state support for, or suppression of, immigration and emigration mattered. While the British state was absorbing migrant Huguenots, Scandinavians, and Moravians—the latter bringing larger families and earlier marriage to Yorkshire by the early eighteenth century—the state was implicitly and explicitly supporting the transit of a substantial core of native men and women to the American colonies. We can appreciate the impact of the latter movement on the marriage chances and family structures of those who emigrated through their letters and diaries. These suggest that core demographic traditions were implanted for at least a generation in host communities. It is often harder to reflect on the experiences of the fractured families left behind, though evidence from English poor law sources suggests that the emigration of children or husbands substantially increased the likelihood of poverty for those who remained. Most other European states also sent migrants to America and accepted often large-scale movements of populations across the breadth of empires or from outside. Indeed, it could be argued that the eighteenth-century European states oversaw the creation of a patchwork of migrant populations on their own territories; these populations exhibited very different traditions of marriage, courtship, family form, and attitudes toward intergenerational relationships. These differing traditions posed real problems for state regulation of marriage

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and child labor within Europe. In the New World, the transplantation of multiple family norms, allied with governance at a distance and by proxy, worked to problematize the relationship between state and family. Thus, the ability of the state to regularize and regulate sexual activity or marital practices was more problematic than in Old Europe, where structures of local government and authority were firmly implanted. European debates on the nature of the family, its susceptibility to exogenous manipulation, and the flavor of intergenerational relationships had less resonance in a society in which the dual impetus of new sociodemographic structures and forms and the need for families to cope with an expanding frontier shaped everyday life. And the levers of power (taxation, information gathering, direct legislation, etc.) by which the European states sought to regulate family form and function became less and less applicable to a high-pressure American demo-economic system in which population and human capital quickly became key variables. In short, the practical execution of the macro roles of the state counterposed, accidentally or deliberately, continuity and change in European and colonial family systems. The impact of this process on constructions of the family, family size and structure, and the expectational framework that shaped the definition and experience of childhood varied keenly by community type and location and according to the reach of the individual state. Much recent scholarship has suggested that local traditions of family size and organization remained strong in the face of socioeconomic, political, and demographic change. Wide narratives linking processes such as proletarianization, industrialization, and migration with changes in courtship patterns, the basis of household formation, and the complexity or otherwise of family forms have been challenged. Yet the Enlightenment witnessed the beginning of important changes in fertility patterns, the understanding of childhood as a distinctive life-cycle phase, and the strength and complexity of peasant family systems. In turn, the enlightenment state played a key role in the balancing of continuity and change, a process that Mary Hartman has labeled “the birth of the modern world.”15

THE STATE AND DIRECT INTERVENTION IN THE FAMILY Of course, as well as macro policies, enlightenment states intervened (or failed to intervene) in ways that directly affected the size, structure, and function of the family and the nature of the experience of childhood. Thus, Britain was the only European state not to have legal restrictions on the marital ambitions and household formation strategies of the poor. Unlike those in many continental

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and American colonial communities, the British poor did not have to seek formal permission to marry, petition ministers, reach a predetermined age, or demonstrate a certain level of landholding or other means to marry. On the contrary, there is singular empirical evidence that the state in its local and regional manifestations gave every incentive for the poor to enter wedlock. This reflected a widespread belief that the way out of poverty was through a more robust family economy of the sort provided by marriage, and pauper marriages of the sort illustrated in Figure 7.5 were common. The effectiveness of the analogous regulation of the marriage chances of the poor elsewhere is a matter for conjecture. However, the fact that states felt able to intervene in this most basic aspect of family formation for the majority of the population suggests an interesting and important sociopolitical interest in the character and role of the family in the Enlightenment. If Britain was unique in its attitude to family formation amongst the poor, it was more clearly in line when it came to the regulation of marriage amongst the rich. Hardwick’s Marriage Act of 1753 sought to regularize and codify what constituted a valid marriage ceremony and who might conduct it. The act was aimed not at the poor but at preventing the sons and daughter of middling and aristocratic families from contracting imprudent marriages that could not be prevented by the intervention of family and friends. Without exception, all European states had or introduced legislation to control whom (and less often when, except in the sense of defining the age at which majority occurred, which varied by more than five years across Europe and the American colonies) the offspring of middling and elite families could marry. In some cases, as in the Swiss Cantons, this legislation extended to matters of remarriage as well. In other words, enlightenment states sought to shape the expectations of children over and above the practical and emotional influences on nuptiality represented by inheritance, respect for parents and kin, traditional norms of marriage, and community expectations. Whether such legislation succeeded, or at least was consistently applied, matters much less for an understanding of the attitude of the state toward the family than the fact that it existed in the first place. Most enlightenment states were equally active in attempts to regulate sexual behavior prior to marriage. The scale of illegitimacy and the degree to which it was regarded as a problem varied significantly across enlightenment Europe and America. In terms of scale, composing a comparative framework is made more difficult by the fact that what constituted a marriage and therefore what constituted an illegitimate birth is often unclear, especially in 1650. The fact that many core sources record illegitimacy somewhat patchily also adds to the problem. In broad terms, however, by the later eighteenth century the national

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FIGURE 7.5: The church and the tavern are contrasted. Engraving by T. Cook after

W. Hogarth, 1797. Wellcome Trust Reference ICV No. 49958.

statistics on illegitimacy range from Britain and Switzerland (around six to ten percent of all births) through Prussia (two percent of births). Demographic and family historians disagree on the extent to which illegitimacy was stigmatized in practice by church and community, but it is more certain that every state in enlightenment Europe implemented formal laws dealing with the detection,

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prosecution, and responsibility for the consequences of extramarital sexual activity. The exact character of such legislation varied from state to state depending on the mechanisms of devolved power, religious complexion, and financial infrastructure. However, the key point is that these states sought to directly regulate and regularize family life in the Enlightenment. Once a marriage was in force, it was the persistent failure of the enlightenment states to legislate protectively on matters—such as divorce, the legal status of widows, domestic violence, and married women’s property rights— that shaped the nature of household power relations and the particular experiences of women within marriage.16 The detailed complexion of family life was intimately tied up with economic situation, location, personal character, and the exact family form in which couples and their children found themselves. British and American women have also been ascribed more agency in the family situation than it has been conventional to allow.17 However, when something went wrong in family relationships, the opportunities for redress or withdrawal were often limited.18 Unhappy men who abandoned their wives were usually hotly pursued by magistrates, local nobles, and officials. Women who abandoned the family were rarer, while for both men and women state legislation on formal divorce had to await the nineteenth century, even in America. The direct impact of this lack of protective or enabling legislation on the family environment is obvious. Miserable or abusive marriages (for all social classes) could lead to the development of stronger compensatory ties with siblings, a greater role for grandparents in the socialization of children, premature death, and the potential for the reconstellation of a household with a stepparent. For children, such a situation might mean the generation of a compensatory range of affective relationships in the local community. There were numerous other ways in which enlightenment states intervened directly in family life, form, and structure. Most lay beyond the focus of this chapter, but it is important to observe that enlightenment politicians and officials increasingly interested themselves in the construction and delineation of childhood. Regulation of the age and nature of apprenticeship helped define the boundary of childhood and youth. So, too, did the regulation of dress, with France and Britain in particular adopting (ultimately failed) legislation that classified the right to wear dress/cloth according to age as well as rank. The period also witnessed sustained attempts to establish an age of criminal responsibility that worked throughout the court systems of individual states and varied across a spectrum (depending on the nature of the crime) from seven years of age in Britain to sixteen years in the Habsburg Empire. And if there were little in the way of formal legal restrictions on the ages of child workers (a de facto

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definition of childhood) in the enlightenment states, France, Britain, Spain, and Prussia could all lay claim to vigorous public debate at the end of the period on the appropriate age for female children to start work.

EXTENDING THE REACH OF THE SOCIAL STATE It is arguably in the area of social welfare legislation, however, that states had the most encompassing impact on the form and function of the family and the experiences of childhood. Some of this welfare legislation directly shaped expectations about, and the execution of, intergenerational obligations. An expectation that kinship groups would support the aged, sick, and destitute was written into the philosophy of welfare across the European states from the medieval period onward. During the Enlightenment, however, there were systematic attempts to inscribe the rights of the poor and the duties of their relatives into laws that, if realized, would have fundamentally shaped the nature of intergenerational relationships and the expectational framework shaping childhood and socialization. The formalized laws generated differed subtly but importantly in their emphasis, and most had some decidedly paradoxical provisions. In England and Wales, for instance, the duties of care between parents and children, brothers and sisters, and grandparents and grandchildren were clearly established. However, grandchildren had no legal duty to offer support to grandparents, while aunts and uncles had no duty to nephews and nieces. Where stem and complex families were common—as, for instance, in some of the Italian states—legislation tended to be more by way of codifying the superstructure of the stem family, with a particular focus on the relationships between incomers and their families of marriage. While absent in Britain and America, elsewhere in the enlightenment states this first-line legislation detailing rights and duties was supported by a raft of enabling legislation dealing with the form, content, and enforceability of legal agreements, such as retirement contracts, between generations. There is much evidence from microstudies that families and kinship groups felt the force of their obligations to each other in times of poverty. Where available for this period, pauper narratives show that children could be wracked with guilt if they were unable to look after their parents and vice versa. Migrant letters from America also testify that obligations to family were deeply inscribed on the individual and collective consciousness. This said, there is also overwhelming evidence that kin groups could, in practice, provide limited help to buttress the slide into destitution. Peter Laslett suggested this was particularly the case for household systems characterized by the nuclear family, but further

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research has shown that the conclusion has much wider purchase.19 Against this backdrop, state welfare action—either on a regular and systematized basis or in response to particular large-scale threats—became a feature of enlightenment Europe and America. Conceptually, this should not perhaps surprise us given the conjunction in enlightenment thinking between new scientific and statistical methods for understanding the world, the perceived remediability of sociocultural problems, and, particularly in the post-1740 period, the sentimental backbone of humanitarianism. Nonetheless, enlightenment states adopted very different legislative and practical attitudes to the provision of welfare, with rather different consequences for the conception, experience, and structure of families. This was rather more than a simple difference between Catholic and Protestant communities—the one orientated toward voluntary and charitable relief and the other toward communal provision. In fact, there were perhaps three broad welfare typologies. At one end of the spectrum were England and Wales. Here, an act of 1601 (the Old Poor Law) introduced the basic framework of a national poor relief system in which communities were obliged to relieve the deserving poor from a fund constructed by taxing local property and punish the undeserving poor. In the 1660s, laws of settlement addressed the problem of who belonged to individual communities, and, together, the various acts determined the nature and scale of welfare to 1834. It remains unclear how long it took for the Old Poor Law to become a nationally functioning system of relief, but it certainly filled this role by the early eighteenth century. This Old Poor Law was flawed in many ways, not least in that it never defined what the categories “deserving” or “undeserving” meant. Moreover, without central control and inspection, most commentators have pointed to the development of a complex regional and intraregional patchwork of practice. Nonetheless, by the end of this period, between five and ten percent of the population in any locality may have been in receipt of some form of relief, with a particular focus on the provision of care for the aged and children. In turn, the Old Poor Law had profound consequences for family life. It actively engineered the movement of children between families and from poor families into apprenticeship; it fostered the courtship and marriage of the poor; through resourcing partnerships with kin members it prevented the breakdown of families and extended the independence of the aged poor; it kept infants alive; it often provided education and medical care for children; and, through the provision of nursing services, it freed young women who might have otherwise been diverted into family caring into the wider marriage market. The Old Poor Law also facilitated the migration of the poor in search of better

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opportunities. In other words, the English and Welsh poor laws might be read as one of the most singularly important influences on the shape, experience, and structure of the family. The same might be said of those states and areas (Swiss Cantons, America, and Sweden) that shared some elements of a formalized poor-law system in this period. The middle of the organizational and experiential spectrum can be represented by France, where welfare was a function of a multilayered set of religious, philanthropic, and state initiatives, at the core of which was the institutionalized provision of care. These institutions might be jointly financed by state and philanthropic sources and staffed by professional employees or religious orders. In both urban and rural areas, the different layers of French nobility were bound into semiformal philanthropic obligations, and their resources were supplemented by state-wide initiatives or regional support at time of particular distress.20 As Tim McHugh showed, while absolute rights to relief and absolute duties to provide it were largely absent, this complex welfare system could relieve more people at more generous levels than its English counterpart.21 Study of the impact of welfare provision on family life in France has lagged behind that of England, but one reading of the evidence is that French welfare was situational while that in England was preventative. One indicator might be that the English welfare system had a clear dampening impact on infant mortality whereas in France relief occurred too late in the process of destitution to preserve life in this way. However we read the evidence, it is nonetheless clear that this complex mixture of welfare sources and practices nonetheless worked to preserve family integrity, prevent forced migration, and preserve adult life through medical aid. It also contained provisions for the apprenticeship, training, and education of children. At the opposite extreme to England and Wales was Scotland, where charitable provision organized and distributed via the church was the mainstay of welfare throughout the Enlightenment, as was also the case in some areas of America and Scandinavia. There is little doubt that the welfare resources thus generated were inadequate for the needs of either rural or urban populations, a situation exacerbated by highland clearances and wider Scottish migration trends. Even after its union with England, Scotland retained its distinctive approach to welfare. There has been surprisingly little work on Scottish poor-law history or the history of the Scottish family. This, and the complicating factor of clan structure, makes it difficult to locate the direct impact of the relative absence of welfare on family life. However, there is evidence that Scottish men were more likely to migrate than their English and Welsh counterparts, that infant mortality was higher in Scotland than in England and Wales, that

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illegitimacy was more common, and that family structure was more fragile. A lack of formal involvement by the state in welfare provision, in other words, seems to have compromised the integrity of Scottish families.

CONCLUSION By the closing decades of the Enlightenment, and in both colonial and independent America, an analysis of the beacons of contemporary public opinion (newspapers, pamphlets, didactic literature, ballads, and magazine literature) reveals a nascent concern over the sociocultural and work lives of children allied to an increasingly urgent concern with the state of British and American families. Often developed as an adjunct to other debates over welfare structures, taxation and trade policy, or war, this concern sometimes encompassed exactly opposite views. Thus, and for example, some contributors to this debate worried about the proliferation of poor families and called for restrictions on marriage while others lamented the decline of the family economy and advocated the use of welfare policies and resources to support multigenerational households as a way of improving the socialization of children and inculcating values of deference and social order. Doubtless, detailed studies of public opinion in other enlightenment states would reveal equally complex debates over the form, integrity, function, and conceptualization of the family. Europe was, after all, on the cusp of the rise of a functional information state by 1800 and, with it, a desire to engineer fundamental sociocultural change. How far these debates reflected the lived experiences of families and childhood will always remain at least slightly opaque. In a direct and indirect sense, however, the state had the power to construct and deconstruct family life and to define, categorize, and reengineer childhood. How this power was exercised depended in part on differences in the stability, organization, and governance of the states involved. Such differences notwithstanding, a unifying factor is the contradictory nature of state engagement with the family. On the one hand, military policies, legal support for proletarianization, and restrictions on the marriage market tended to fracture families and negatively shape the expectational framework of childhood. On the other hand, most European states and American communities adopted welfare policies that provided multilevel support for families and clearly aimed at preserving child health and welfare alongside family integrity and form. Against this backdrop, it is unsurprising that those shaping public debate at the end of the Enlightenment struggled with how to identify, construct, shape, and categorize the family.

CHAPTER EIGHT

Faith and Religion allison p. coudert

Attempting to write a chapter on faith and religion and the effect of both on families and the lives of children in the Enlightenment is daunting. The questions that immediately arise are many: What faith? What religion? What kind of families and children? One of the most significant legacies of the Reformation was the permanent division of Christendom into rival churches. From the sixteenth century onward, the process of confession divided Christians from their own kind, and for the first time in European history religious affiliation became a defining aspect of individual, regional, and national identity. John Bull did not look kindly upon Catholic Spain largely because Protestantism had become a key component of what it meant to be English. Spain returned the compliment because being Spanish and being Catholic were all but synonymous. Tolerance in its modern form involving the coexistence of multiple churches was still in its infancy, and although de facto toleration allowed different religious denominations to live together in relative peace, for many people intolerance was a virtue and an essential mark of true piety. The parish church was still at the center of each community, and religious rituals marked each stage of an individual’s life from birth through marriage and childbearing to eventual death and burial. Religious services fostered social cohesion, parish schools provided elementary education, public meetings opened and closed with prayers, and oaths on the Bible cemented political alliances as well as business deals. Sabbaths, saint’s days, processions, religious festivals, and days of repentance and thanksgiving were an integral part of the yearly calendar.

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Church bells pealed for the birth and death of princes, warned of fires, and signaled the proximity of invading armies. Religion was thus a defining aspect of an individual’s private and social life and even dictated such things as the hats he or she wore. In eighteenth century Augsburg, for example, Protestants dressed their little girls in “wing” bonnets while Catholic parents chose “bolt” bonnets.1 Confessionalism was, thus, imprinted on body and mind, but the nature of the confession and how it affected the actual lives of families and children is unclear. In addition to the problem of multiple religious identities, scholars have increasingly realized that writing about families and children is far more difficult than once imagined, especially in a period as complex as the eighteenth century—when class divisions intensified with the development of new trades and professions and the growth of a middle class that was itself increasingly fragmented. When one compounds these difficulties with the major transformations in religious institutions and beliefs, not to mention mentalities, during the long eighteenth century, the problems multiply exponentially. Given this situation, Steven Shapin provided a good model with the following caveat at the beginning of his book The Scientific Revolution: “There was no such thing as the Scientific Revolution, and this is a book about it.”2 Just as there was no scientific revolution, so too there was no faith, no religion, no family, and no childhood in the long eighteenth century, only multiples of each, and this is a chapter about them. While no definitive statement can be made about every one of these multiples, this chapter attempts to sketch out some of the complex factors that combined to reshape both religious attitudes about the family and childhood as well as the institution of family itself. Given the constraints of space, this analysis focuses on what must be considered the major transformation in the period when it comes to children—namely, the metamorphosis of the child from an innately sinful creature to an innocent angel. The novelty of this new view of children becomes apparent when contrasted to the prevailing attitudes characteristic of Protestants in the preceding two centuries. Philip Greven identified three major “temperaments” when it came to child rearing: the evangelical temperament, which stressed the innate sinfulness of children and the need to break a child’s will in order to prepare him or her for the possibility of salvation; the moderates, who considered children innocent but corruptible and who consequently focused on “bending” a child’s will through love and persuasion rather than breaking it; and “genteel parenting,” which was basically the prerogative of the wealthy and stressed manners and sociability rather than scripture and theology. Greven’s analysis applies to many English and European Protestants as well as Catholics during the early

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modern period and among certain groups of both denominations during the Enlightenment. His analysis is particularly useful in drawing a clear correlation between parenting styles and religious conceptions about the nature of God and man. In short, parents and educators belonging to religious denominations that stressed divine omnipotence, the torments of hell, and innate human sinfulness felt duty-bound to discipline children harshly to save them from damnation. However, members of denominations that viewed children as neither good nor evil but in a middle, unmoral state took a gentler approach. But a new view of children emerges in the Enlightenment, as well—one that stressed their purity and innocence. This became an axiom of the cult of sensibility, and it indicates that a radical reassessment of the family, children, and childhood had occurred. Sensibility became a new secular religion, reaching, as Simon Schama suggests, its definitive form in the 1760s in the sentimental writings of Rousseau.3 Along with the cult of sensibility came the man of feeling, who exercised his power by appealing to the heart of those dependent upon him, not by applying the rod. A fundamental prerequisite to these developments was the reevaluation of emotions and passions. Far from representing all that was most dangerous in human nature, a standard Christian view up to the eighteenth century (and in some quarters beyond), the passions came to be seen as the basis of morality. This positive evaluation of emotion was partly a consequence of new attitudes toward faith and new ways of practicing religion. While an emphasis on public observance and ritual continued, although more so for Catholics than Protestants, more personal and emotional forms of religious practice developed among both groups as religion turned inward, expressing itself in terms of personal piety and private acts of devotion. With the growth of state power and the development of a consumer culture, the family lost its primacy as an economic unit. No longer demanding the sacrifice of the individual for the good of the whole, the family became a place of refuge in which individuals could cultivate their inner lives and develop their autonomous selves. As one can well imagine, attitudes toward children were directly affected by these dramatic changes. In a very real sense, the family itself became an object of worship: fatherhood was glorified, motherhood exalted, and children accorded semidivine status. This idealization, one might say idolization, of the family and children conformed nicely to the growing nationalism emerging at the end of the Enlightenment and to its religious cast. As many scholars have noted, the idea that the true wealth of a nation lay in its population first arose in the eighteenth century. In this atmosphere, children began to be seen as national treasures. No longer sinful creatures

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who, quite literally, had to be beaten into shape, children began to be thought of as innocent beings, essentially blank slates whose character was malleable and shaped by society. Human beings could, in other words, make, remake, and even perfect themselves, and the most important way of doing this was through the improved education and upbringing of children. For many people, theology gave way to anthropology, revelation to the reformation of manners, religion to morality, and the quest for salvation in the hereafter to the search for happiness in the here and now. The growth of consumer culture encouraged this more positive view of children and the emergence of more demonstratively emotional bonds within the family as domestic comfort increased and the house was transformed into a home. As middle- and upper-class children played with toys, wore clothes, sat in chairs, worked at desks, slept in beds, and read books specially designed for them, the child emerged as a cherished, honored, and central figure in family life. Most lower class children were not so fortunate, although the idea that all children were malleable did foster the establishment of charitable institutions devoted to helping poor children lead productive and honorable lives.4 The Spectator, for example, defended charity schools as a way to turn impoverished children into honest servants raised to “consider his master as his father, his friend, and his benefactor, upon easy terms, and in expectation of no other return but moderate wages, and gentle usage.”5 Foundling hospitals and orphanages were endowed for the similar purpose of training orphans for service, primarily the army or navy.6 In order to understand these developments and fully comprehend how and why attitudes toward children changed so dramatically during the Enlightenment, two issues must be addressed: the rejection of the concept of original sin and the increasingly rigid stereotyping of gender roles within the family.

FROM SINFUL CREATURE TO INNOCENT ANGEL In his important article, “Anxiety and the Formation of Early Modern Culture,” William Bouwsma argues that a pessimistic view of human nature was a defining aspect of the growing anxiety that developed during the late medieval and early modern period. Given the nature of the century into which they were born, Luther’s and Calvin’s doctrine of the utter depravity of fallen human beings is entirely understandable. For these reformers, fearfulness, anxiety, distrust, and war characterized the human condition—which was, indeed, the case in war-torn, early modern Europe—and the only solution was the enforcement of authority predicated on repression and obedience. Depraved, corrupt, sinful, and filthy are words that continually appear in evangelical discussions

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of the human condition. Protestants were not, however, alone in their denigration of human nature. Like Luther and Calvin, Cornelius Jansen, Bishop of Ypres, studied Augustine carefully, and he too concluded that as a result of Adam’s sin our nature is wholly corrupt and depraved. Only by factoring in the pessimistic view of human nature generated by the Reformation and CounterReformation can we fully understand the harsh child-rearing practices of some Protestant and Catholic parents. In his catechism for children, for example, John Cotton forced children to reflect on their corrupt nature by having them recite, “I was conceived in sin, and born in iniquity. . . . Adam’s sin is imputed to me and a corrupt nature dwells in me.” Cotton Mather posed a rhetorical question to parents he suspected of being too fond of their offspring: “Don’t you know that your children are the Children of Death, and the Children of Hell and the Children of Wrath, by Nature?” Jacqueline Pascal, headmistress of the school for girls at Port Royal, insisted that “perfect watchfulness” over the children in her charge was absolutely necessary and that “everything that they say must be heard by their mistress” in order to root out the innate “faults that they wish one not to know of.”7 Such negative views of children might suggest a lack of affection on the part of adults, but as recent scholarship has demonstrated, this was decidedly not the case. There is no question that most parents loved their children, but according to the experts of the time, parental love was dangerous because it could lead parents to overlook their children’s faults and, by doing so, set them on the road to perdition. Given this fear, the whole weight of parental discipline was directed toward breaking the child’s will: “Break their will that you may save their souls,” counseled John Wesley. Greven gives numerous examples to show that evangelical parents saw themselves as engaged in “war” with their children: “the imagery of their warfare is the language of conflict, of conquest, of breaking, crushing, subduing, and destroying; the language of power unchecked and of resistance quelled.” Simon Schama describes the same battle occurring in Dutch households as parents tried to transform unruly infants into virtuous citizens.8

THE DECLINE OF HELL AND ORIGINAL SIN Writing about the Enlightenment, Ernst Cassirer pointed out that “the concept of original sin is the common opponent against which all the trends of the philosophy of the Enlightenment join forces.” Indeed, probably the most pressing problem during the Enlightenment was how to define human nature. In his Essay on Man, Pope claimed he was “the glory, jest and riddle of the world,”

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but this did little to solve the problem of personhood in an age of exponentially growing trade, travel, and consumption, when the need to define the legal rights, privileges, and obligations of persons became essential. What one sees over the course of the long eighteenth century is the increasing resistance to the idea of man as innately sinful and an emerging consensus that human beings are social creatures whose essential goodness and natural sympathy for their fellow men can be cultivated or destroyed by the treatment they receive from family and society at large. In this scenario, the child literally becomes the father of the man. This idea, which we take for granted today, initiated a revolutionary way of viewing children and the family because it emphasized the key role families played in raising good, decent, hard-working, and morally upright citizens. Before the eighteenth century, people did not assume the way children were treated would affect their behavior and personality as adults. Childhood was important for what it might tell about the adult the child would become, but not in and for itself. But as we see during the Enlightenment—glaringly in the case of Rousseau’s Confessions—childhood experiences became the anvil upon which adult character was forged. What we find in Rousseau and many other writers is the rejection of the deep pessimism about the human race that was a basic aspect of early modern Protestant as well as Catholic thought.9 A number of different factors converged to create the more positive view of human nature that emerges in the eighteenth century, all of which had profound effects on families and children. The Protestant elimination of purgatory severed the close ties previously existing between the living and the dead, and this, together with the Protestant emphasis on an individual’s “calling” in this world, encouraged a more positive attitude toward the physical world and human activity in it. A similar validation of human activity occurred among Catholics, as well, although for different reasons. Stung by Luther’s attack on indulgences, Catholic reformers worked hard to put to rest the notion that salvation could be bought, emphasizing instead a new kind of activist philanthropy directed at transforming the lives of those on the margins of society. Some thirty new religious orders and congregations were founded from the late sixteenth through the eighteenth century, many with female branches and nine devoted exclusively to women. All the new male orders stressed an active ministry to a previously unprecedented degree. Female religious joined in by teaching, helping the poor, and tending the sick. The Counter-Reformation fostered policies that broadened the horizons of impoverished and abused women and children by sponsoring asylums for prostitutes hoping to reform their lives, unhappy wives escaping abusive marriages, and poor girls and orphans needing skills to lead productive lives. Protestants and Catholics also established

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charities to provide poor girls with dowries. The idealization of poverty and the salvific value of being poor characteristic of the medieval church was thus rejected by Protestants and Catholics alike. Poverty had become a social issue that had to be addressed, and given the malleability of human nature, the poor, especially poor children, were now considered legitimate objects of charity with the potential to become productive, moral citizens.10 Scientific discoveries provided additional reasons for the emergence of a more positive view of human nature. Taken together with advances in medical theory and treatment, these developments created a sense of optimism and a growing belief that human beings could not only transform and improve their physical and mental selves but the world as well. The conviction that health could be improved was an aspect of what Peter Gay has described as the “medicalization” of the Enlightenment by authors who discussed the shortcomings of society and social institutions—religious fanaticism, political injustice, poverty, and the prevalence of ignorance and superstition—as “pathologies” that could be “cured.” The most effective way to cure these problems was by improving human reason and perfecting human nature. The conviction that a better human being could be created was one of the consequences of the new sensualist psychology made famous by John Locke.11 Locke’s Essay Concerning Human Understanding was contingent on Descartes’s famous cogito ergo sum. For Descartes, human consciousness was the Archimedean point in the universe. Man alone had a conscious mind, and that mind was the measure of all things. The question became how do human beings think, understand, and know? This was what Locke set out to investigate, and his conclusion was radical: human beings do not come into the world equipped with any predetermined character—sinful or innocent—or innate knowledge. Humans are the product of their experiences. At birth, their brains are empty slates that are gradually written upon as material impressions enter their minds through their senses. Humans are neither more nor less than the sum of their sensations, and the manipulation and regulation of these sensations provide the means to create new and improved human beings. As Locke says, “Of all the men we meet with nine parts of ten are what they are, good or evil, useful or not, by their education.” Sensualist psychology turned children and families into natural guinea pigs for the innumerable Enlightenment schemes dedicated to the education of the “perfect” man and the “helpmeet” who would perfectly suit his needs—Rousseau’s Émile and Sophie being prime examples.12 A conspicuous feature of the book trade during the Enlightenment is the number of treatises devoted to the education of children. As authors of these treatises, theologians were outnumbered by laymen, especially medical men,

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who increasingly assumed the mantel of expertise in raising children. The idea that humans were bound to improve became axiomatic for many enlightenment thinkers intoxicated by the Promethean vision that, indeed, man makes himself. This represents a stunning change in attitude. To take the example of England: in Paradise Lost (1667), Milton described man as sinful and fallen; some seventy years later in his Essay on Man (1734), Pope saw man as suspended between angels and beasts; by the end of the century, many individuals, not only in England but across the continent as well, agreed with Erasmus Darwin that “all nature exists in a state of perpetual improvement,” which included human beings. In his “Second discourse, sur les progress successifs de l’esprit humain” (1750), Turgot sketched out the history of human progress. Condorcet remained committed to his belief in the inevitable improvement of the human race even after he had been imprisoned during the Terror and eventually committed suicide to avoid the guillotine. In his Essai sur la manière de perfectionner l’espèce humaine (1756), Charles Augustin Vandermonde outlined the simple rules and natural principles that would make health, beauty, and strength hereditary while simultaneously instructing parents how to train their children’s minds. The idea that the human race could be perfected appears in Germany, as well, and explains the particular fascination with reincarnation on the part of a broad range of thinkers, including Wolff, Lessing, Schade, Clavius, and Weishaupt (to name just a few). Martin Mulsow argues that reincarnation provided an alternative moral framework to Christian sanctions against immorality, especially as the notions of hell and eternal punishment lost credibility. For many thinkers, the belief that people would reap their reward or punishment in future lives offered a morally compelling and attractive picture of a God whose creation was preordained to return to its original perfection. These optimistic assessments of human nature found an especially welcome home in the cult of sensibility.13

THE CULT OF SENSIBILITY For the aforementioned reasons, one can see that there was a major shift in people’s orientation during the Enlightenment. Instead of looking back to an age of prelapsarian perfection or forward to a supernatural afterlife, people began to look ahead to an earthly future of social and intellectual progress in which children, their upbringing, and their education played key roles. In many cases, theology gave way to anthropology as the focus of attention turned from God to man. Anthony Ashley Cooper, third Earl of Shaftesbury and pupil of Locke, took upon himself the goal of vindicating human nature against its

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detractors, whether in the form of Hobbesians or Calvinists. Shaftesbury charged that both groups had created a malevolent, demonic deity, for how could a benevolent God create innately evil men? In Shaftesbury’s view, sympathy was a natural emotion; in fact, it was the quality that bound the world into a harmonious whole. Man was a social animal, and sympathy and “good humor” were the keys to a benevolent, well-regulated society.14 Shaftesbury has been described as the “Father of Sentimental Ethics,” which developed via Francis Hutcheson, David Hume, and Adam Smith into the school of Scottish moral sense philosophy. The family was the arena in which sentimental ethics were most visible, but in Adam Smith’s Wealth of Nations the sentiment of sympathy plays out in the economic sphere as well, leading to general prosperity. In the modern world, where economics seems to have little to do with ethics, the following passage about the family from The Wealth of Nations appears strangely out of place, but it demonstrates Smith’s conviction that sympathy was the mark of a refined and civilized society—in this case, it is important to remember that Smith was a professor of moral philosophy at Glasgow University. The passage marks a profound change in religious sensibilities because Smith makes no mention whatsoever of religion or revelation. The sympathy Smith describes is an innate and natural human emotion: With what pleasure do we look upon a family, through the whole of which reign mutual love and esteem, where the parents and children are companions for one another, without any other difference than what is made by respectful affection on the one side, and kind indulgence on the other. The most perfect figure in this family tableau is “the man of perfect virtue . . . he who joins to the most perfect command of his own original and selfish feelings, the most exquisite sensibility to the original and sympathetic feelings of others.”15 Here we see at work what Simon Schama described as a secular religion of sensibility in which human emotions are endowed with moral value. The cult of sensibility was an international phenomenon. It appeared throughout eighteenth-century Europe and its colonies in somewhat different forms depending on the context. While most historians agree that the cult of sensibility encouraged a positive view of children, they disagree about its effect on women in their roles as wives and mothers. A number argue that the focus on sexual difference and the more rigid definition of gender roles within the family characteristic of the early modern period collapsed under pressure

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from the new cult of sensibility and the resulting feminization of discourse and behavior. These scholars question the generally accepted idea that separate spheres for men and women became the norm in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. Instead of a sanctuary for women, they contend that the household became a place where men and women could socialize in ways they never had before. Consumer culture transformed domestic environments, making them more comfortable and welcoming to males, who before the eighteenth century had spent their leisure largely outside the domestic sphere in inns and taverns, where women never ventured. Shammas argues that “the evolution of the house into a home” facilitated interaction between the sexes and gave women more power in the domestic realm.16 In spite of this revisionist view, it must not be forgotten that female power was always subsumed under that of the male head of the household. As many scholars have argued, eighteenth-century men appropriated the discourse of sensibility and used it against women: men might well share the same emotions and feelings as women, but their intellect and knowledge made them both different and vastly superior, which entitled them to tell women exactly what to do when it came to bearing and rearing children. This point was made in no uncertain terms by the physician William Cadogan: It is with great Pleasure I see at last the Preservation of children become the care of Men of Sense. In my Opinion, this business has been too long fatally left to the Management of Women who cannot be supposed to have proper knowledge to fit them for such a Task, notwithstanding they look upon it to be their own Province. Cadogan was convinced that once they had read his book, “most Nurses, Aunts, Grand-Mothers, etc.” would realize “how much they have hitherto been in the wrong.” The cult of sensibility enabled men to encroach on what had historically been a predominantly female sphere, which explains the proliferation of books written by male experts on every aspect of infant and child care. Thus, however much male authority and the patriarchal structure of the family changed as a result of political and economic developments and changes in taste and feeling, men did not cease to claim they were the authoritative and rational heads of the family. The only difference was that men could now claim to be authorities when it came to emotions as well as reason. The positive side of this development for women was that the man of feeling—Lord Orville in Fanny Burney’s Evelina provides a good example—is courteous, polite, and incredibly sensitive to the feelings of women. He is opposed to oaths and

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detests excessive drinking, gambling, and cruelty to animals, all of which were standard elements of male popular culture. The man of feeling ruled with a velvet glove rather than an iron fist. The downside was that women like Evelina gained power, just as a host of other eighteenth-century heroines did, by employing their vulnerability and weakness to invoke gallantry, forbearance, and assistance from the males in their lives.17 In England, Samuel Richardson’s Pamela (1740) and Clarissa (1748) were key texts for this new secular religion of sensibility. In a postscript to Clarissa, Richardson claimed the novel was more effective than the pulpit in inculcating morality. The type of morality is suspect, however, since the virtue of these young heroines is entirely a function of the degree to which they are willing to suffer and, in Clarissa’s case, die to preserve their chastity. Richardson went so far as to say he offered readers “the great doctrines of Christianity under the fashionable guise of an amusement.” It is therefore understandable that Clarissa should liken her own suffering to Christ’s. It was, she said, “in humble imitation of the sublimest Exemplar; I often say: Lord, it is thy will, and it shall be mine . . . I know thou will not afflict me beyond what I can bear.” Instead of seeing this as sacrilege—since surely Jesus had more on his mind than chastity—Clarissa’s readers swooned in sympathy.18 The conversion of men at the hands of women is a standard theme in sentimental novels. Given this, a number of authors argue that the literature of sensibility must been seen as an aspect of English religious history. But England was not the only country in which the literature of sensibility functioned in this manner. The cult of sensibility crossed national and linguistic boundaries and, as Schama suggests, reached its definitive form in Rousseau. Rousseau’s Émile was excoriated by many Protestants and Catholics because it suggested a child could be educated in Christianity through natural rather than divine revelation. But this did nothing to stop the public’s adulation of Rousseau or to lessen the effect his works had in encouraging a sentimental, even religious, veneration of the family and children. As Robert Darnton demonstrates, Rousseau’s readers read him “religiously” precisely because he “demanded to be read as if he were a prophet of divine truth.” Rousseau was indeed sainted, and his grave at Ermenonville became a shrine. Religion had truly descended from heaven to earth.19 Rousseau was intensely aware of how childhood experience shaped adult behavior, linking, in his own case, the spankings he received as a child to his adult sexual proclivities. Rousseau makes an impassioned case against the harsh treatment of children, pointing out that excessive punishment and

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attempts to break a child’s will are counterproductive and lead to timidity, deceit, lying, and stealing. He offers himself as an example: Soon I had received so many beatings that I grew less sensitive to them; in the end they seemed to me a sort of retribution for my thefts, which authorized me to go on stealing. . . . I reckoned that to be beaten like a rogue justified my being one. Rousseau wrote his Confessions with Augustine in mind, but the two were diametrically opposed when it came to their views of children. Two incidents, each involving a tree, provide apt examples. Augustine describes a childhood prank when he and some of his youthful friends stole pears from a neighbor. This gives him the opportunity to berate himself for his innately wicked nature; he stole the pears not because he was hungry but simply because he was evil: I was thus evil for no object, having no cause for wrongdoing save my wrongness. The malice of the act was base and I loved it—that is to say I loved my own undoing. I loved the evil in me—not the thing for which I did the evil, simply the evil: my soul was depraved, and hurled itself down from security in You [God] into utter destruction, seeking no profit for wickedness but only to be wicked. Rousseau’s tree incident is totally different. Mr. Lambercier, with whom he was living at the time, planted a walnut tree and watered it assiduously, an activity that convinced Rousseau and his cousin that there would be nothing finer than to plant a tree of their own, which they did. But since they were not allowed to roam far enough from the house to fetch water from a nearby source, they constructed a trench from the basin surrounding the walnut tree to the basin surrounding their tree, covering it up so as not to be noticed. But Mr. Lambercier realized how fast the water he poured into his basin disappeared, and without saying a word he demolished the aqueduct. The denouement of Rousseau’s story was very different from Augustine’s. Instead of bewailing his sinfulness, the incident showed how ingenious, how original, how cute—in short, how utterly adorable—he and his cousin were. As Rousseau says: “M. Lambercier did not utter a word of reproach, did not look sternly upon us, and never mentioned the matter at all, though we heard his full-throated laugh ring out shortly afterwards from his sister’s room. You could hear M. Lambercier’s laugh from afar.”20 Rousseau’s Confessions show how much religious sensibilities had changed during the long eighteenth century, at least for the educated and urban segment of the population. A paradox lay at the heart of Christianity, for while it called for

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the renunciation, even annihilation, of the self, to be saved one had to ceaselessly dwell on oneself, dissecting every action and every motive in order to root out the least taint of sin. The idea that Christ came to save each individual encouraged the very egotism his death was meant to eradicate. Spiritual autobiographies were, thus, a compromised literature from the start, for the greater the sense of sin, the greater the sense of self. In Rousseau’s Confessions the self remains, but sin has virtually disappeared. Rousseau is what he is, and the reader must accept him warts and all, for these very warts make him unique. Not only has revelation been taken away from God, but so, too, have judgment and forgiveness. In this era, novelists and memoirists revealed themselves and readers provided them with absolution: psychological introspection replaced Christian self-examination, and bearing one’s unique soul in public provided the ultimate assurance of immortality. The court of appeal has descended from heaven to earth. What really counts became what men think, not God; and the object of worship became man, not God. Confession, autobiography, and fiction become blurred in Rousseau just as in novels. Many readers of Rousseau’s La Nouvelle Heloise wanted to believe the letters were real, and many convinced themselves they were.21 The same willing suspension of disbelief and religious reading of novels occurred across the channel. Goethe’s The Sorrows of Young Werther created such sympathy for its suicidal hero that many young men felt compelled to martyr themselves on the altar of a cruel and unfeeling world—much, it must be said, to the author’s chagrin. The heroes and heroines of sentimental novels usurped the position of the martyrs and saviors of earlier ages; they inspired devotion, emulation, and even worship. But another object of worship appeared as well—the family, with father, mother, and children playing their roles in a secularized religious drama of individual, family, and national salvation. The holy family came down to earth as one can see in the pictures of Jean-Baptiste Greuze. During the 1760s and 1770s, the paintings that attracted the greatest crowds and the most excited and passionate comment at the Paris Salons were Greuze’s sentimental domestic dramas. Girl Weeping over Her Dead Canary, exhibited at the Salon of 1765, was mobbed to such an extent that Diderot, one of Greuze’s greatest admirers, could not get through the crowd to see it. The effect of this painting on viewers is hard to fathom in our more cynical age, but it led Charles Mathon de la Cour to confess, “Several times I have passed whole hours in attentive contemplation so that I became drunk with a sweet and tender sweetness.” The girl in this particular painting is one of many nubile young women in the company of dead or broken things painted by Greuze: The Girl with the Broken Mirror, The Girl with the Broken Eggs, and The Girl with the Broken Pitcher are others in this genre and have led commentators in our post-Freudian world to see them as lamentations over the loss of a young’s girl’s virginity. Chastity had

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always been the female virtue par excellence, at least in wealthier families where daughters were goods exchanged between families to cement alliances—and no one wanted spoiled goods. But as we have seen in the case of Pamela and Clarissa, a common, if not central, plot in novels and dramas involved virtuous young women at the mercy of predatory, satanic males like Lovelace, and the drama hinged on whether the heroine would fall, a martyr to male lust, or

FIGURE 8.1: William Hogarth, Beer Street. British Museum, London.

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whether she could successfully resist and convert her would-be ravisher into a virtuous husband. The fallen woman plays a key part in the bourgeois dramas of the period; she is the antithesis of the virtuous mother, who acquired semidivine status as the angel in the house.22 During the Enlightenment, capitalism, nationalism, and colonialism joined to foster an unprecedented reverence for the family—that is, the white,

FIGURE 8.2: William Hogarth, Gin Lane. British Museum, London.

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bourgeois family. Families became national assets, and the application of religious rhetoric to nations, which was such a part of emerging nationalism, carried over into the domestic sphere. Ruth Perry goes so far as to claim that the female reproductive body was, in effect, colonized for the good of the Mother Country. In this respect, John Wesley commented aptly that the new fashion of describing childbirth as “reproduction” rather than “generation,” as it had traditionally been called, turned women into productive units much like “beasts” as well as “nettles or onions.” One of the most important developments in the late seventeenth and eighteenth centuries was the increasing interest in the collection of statistics and their use in determining governmental policies involving the health and well-being of citizens.23 Population became an area of great concern. In France, there was widespread fear that the population was declining to the point of extinction, which led to a flood of literature extolling motherhood and condemning the immorality and selfishness of women who neither married nor bore children. Across Europe, women were increasingly valued as breeders of the men necessary to stock an army and propel a nation to political and economic greatness. Thus, the family was endowed with a semidivine agency as the institution that would ensure the nation’s salvation, but only if the family values of patriarchy and motherhood combined to create dutiful and obedient offspring. Hogarth’s Beer Street and Gin Lane, both engraved in 1750, exemplify the contrast between good middle-class mothers, who drink beer and care for their husbands and children, and their despicable lower class counterparts, who selfishly squander their money on gin and shamelessly neglect their offspring. As one can see from his series Marriage à la Mode, Hogarth is equally unsparing of upper-class parents who sacrifice their children on the altar of vanity and pleasure. This complex nexus of associations between nation, class, and family and the way each was imbued with moral significance is clear in two more of Greuze’s paintings. In La mère bien aimée (The Beloved Mother), one of the most popular pictures at the Salon of 1765, we see the ideal woman surrounded by enough children to satisfy any government official worried about depopulation. As Diderot commented, this picture “preaches population.” It is “dramatic poetry” that invites “us”—meaning husbands—to action, the action of giving one’s wife “as many children as you can.”24 In this picture, motherhood and the family are presented as objects of adoration—not only in the eyes of the husband, who appears to be in a state verging on ecstasy as he enters the domestic realm, but for those viewing the picture as well. In the second picture, La lecture de la Bible, exhibited at the Salon of 1766, the family itself has become the congregation and the father the minister of his familial flock. As Edgar Munhall points out, this picture reflects a Protestant spirit, but it

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clearly had no denominational boundaries in its appeal. The Abbé de la Porte’s enthusiastic reaction to the picture shows how reverence for the family had inserted itself into Catholic as well as Protestant thinking. The Abbé begins by describing the father, how he looks, and even what he feels, just as he describes the actions and emotions of other figures in the painting. In the same way that readers wanted novels to be real, so too did the viewers of pictures: Touched by what he has just seen there [in the biblical text], he himself is convinced of the morality he teaches. His eyes are all but wet with tears. His wife, an attractive enough woman, whose beauty is in no way ideal but of the sort one encounters among people of that kind, listens to him with that look of tranquility that suits an honest wife in the middle of a numerous family that is her sole occupation, pleasure, and glory. . . . The little chap, who tries to grab a stick on the table and who pays no attention to things he cannot understand, is altogether natural. . . . What nobility! And

FIGURE 8.3: Jean-Baptiste Greuze, The Beloved Mother. Courtesy of the Art Gallery of New South Wales.

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what feeling in that good grandmother who, without stopping to attend to what she hears, pulls back the little rogue who has made the dog growl. What a painting. What a composition!25

CONCLUSION As John Hope Mason remarked in 1982, the eighteenth century is no longer what it was: a period of reason and order sandwiched between religious excess on the one hand and industrial and urban turmoil on the other. It now appears both more conflicted and more somber than once imagined, particularly in the realm of faith and religion. The idea, made famous by Peter Gay, that the Enlightenment represented the rise of modern paganism is no longer tenable. Gay could only make this claim because he located the Enlightenment in France, where the attack on religion was undeniable. But as scholars have convincingly shown, the Enlightenment took many different forms and reflected the vastly different political, religious, and social environments in which it occurred; in these various enlightenments, religion played a crucial role, as it did even in France. Thus, instead of seeing the Enlightenment as the first stage in the inevitable march to secular modernity, scholars now view it as a period in which new forms of media combined with new institutions to create a cacophony of competing and conflicting information supporting a proliferation of religious and political ideologies from the most conservative to the most radical. Gay was therefore correct in illustrating the way skepticism, anticlericalism, and irreligion proliferated during the Enlightenment, but he failed to appreciate how the battle between Catholics and Protestants also encouraged the revitalization of religious institutions, providing the laity with new forms of piety and new avenues for religious expression. One of the most significant of these new forms of piety and religion lay in emerging nationalism. It was during the long eighteenth century that family values, which have come to play such a powerful role in contemporary politics, were born. The connection between religion, politics, and the family was cemented as secular and religious authorities across Europe worked in consort to reform the manners and morals of the people under their jurisdictions in the interest of constructing stable societies. A David Bell argued, nationalism is not the same as national sentiment, and nation building is a breathtakingly ambitious program that only emerged in the eighteenth century. The changes in family dynamics and attitudes toward children described in this chapter were part of this larger ambitious project as families and the children they produced came to be seen as the true wealth of nations.26

CHAPTER NINE

Health and Science mary lindemann

In respect to medicine and health, the 1700s can lay a reasonable claim to the title of the first “century of the child.” In 1962, Philippe Ariès used the phrase to designate what he regarded as the discovery of the child as a unique individual with special needs as well as patterns of thinking and acting that deviated from those of adults.1 Virtually none of this reorientation arose from any major scientific advances, and a hunt for scientific breakthroughs that profoundly influenced pediatric medicine proves futile. Moreover, twenty-firstcentury historians of science and medicine increasingly reject progressive, positivist narratives constructed around the march of science. Nonetheless, during the Enlightenment, a general discovery of childhood had profound repercussions for medicine and medical care for children. Both pediatrics and puericulture (the physical and mental development of the child) were born then. Additionally, the Enlightenment brought forth new ideas about the formation of children’s minds as well as their bodies. Thus, it is to this period as well that one traces the beginnings of child psychology. The Enlightenment’s program for children and the central role of education were closely linked to the movement’s broader objectives. Especially important was the worldly orientation of the philosophes, which led them to promote “a radically different conception of health, which now figured as the key to terrestrial happiness.”2 The Enlightenment, and the eighteenth century more generally, thought about and cared for children’s physical and psychological welfare in critical ways. A brief overview of the implications of early child studies leads

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to a discussion of how the Enlightenment viewed children and proposed to improve their health and medical care from conception to young adulthood. Well into the twentieth century, however, the family remained the chief locus of medical care. The effect of the Enlightenment’s emphasis on companionate marriage and education led to a more child-centered family. At the same time, the healthy household in both medical and metaphoric terms became an essential aspect of thinking about children. Poor sanitation, dirty eating and drinking vessels (especially those used to feed babies), and lack of ventilation were blamed for stunting growth and producing physical maladies. People also recognized that psychological stress (they would have called it “troubles”) within the familial environment could affect children’s mental or bodily health, but few remedies were proposed except to prescribe better parenting practices or stricter discipline.

THINKING ABOUT CHILDREN Perhaps the most influential writer on child health during the entire eighteenth century was not a physician but the philosophe Jean-Jacques Rousseau. In his wildly popular Émile, ou de l’éducation (1762), Rousseau turned his attention to the upbringing of the ideal citizen, Émile, and his female counterpart, Sophie.3 Rousseau took up and popularized a series of topics that became integral parts of the enlightenment creed on child rearing. These included precepts for the physical and psychological education of the young child and adolescent. For instance, Rousseau accepted John Locke’s program of “harden[ing] children’s bodies against the intemperance of seasons, climates, elements; against hunger, thirst, fatigue.”4 More famously, he inveighed against swaddling and warmly enthused about the virtues of maternal breast-feeding. The latter, he insisted, would not only reform a nation’s morals but also “re-people” the state. Likewise, the German public health reformer Johann Peter Frank argued that at least a third of all people perished because of mistakes in infant nutrition, mostly the neglect of breast-feeding.5 Similar precepts become standard during the Enlightenment in the French Encyclopédie as well as in medical writings that addressed learned and popular audiences alike. In these respects, however, neither Locke nor Rousseau was original or innovative. Long before Rousseau published Émile, others had raised similar puericultural issues, but more people became acquainted with them from reading Rousseau than any other way. Indeed, the program of the Enlightenment on children’s health dovetailed neatly with the early populationist concerns of mercantilists and cameralists. It escaped no one’s notice that the greatest weight of human mortality fell on the early years of life.

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The attention of medical men to issues of childhood health predated the eighteenth century, although the term pediatrics first appeared in a 1722 Latin publication, Paedojatreja Practica. The number of writings on children and childhood health soon increased dramatically as did the number of medical dissertations exploring the diseases of children and explaining how to treat them. Late eighteenth-century medical training began to offer courses in pediatric medicine. Antoine Petit, among others, conducted a series of lectures in Paris on obstetrics and pediatrics. A whole range of physicians devoted substantial time and thought to the subject. Some of the most famous and influential works of this period include Johann Storch’s Theoretische und practische Abhandlung von Kinderkrankheiten (1750–1751); Niels Rosén von Rosenstein’s Anweisung zur Kenntniß und Cur der Kinderkrankheiten (1764); Robert Wytt’s (1714–1766) Observations on Dropsy in the Brain (1768), which had much to say about hydrocephalic children; George Armstrong’s An Account of the Diseases Most Incident to Children from Their Birth until the Age of Puberty (1777); and Michael Underwood’s frequently reprinted and translated Treatise on the Diseases of Children (1784). Moreover, the phenomenon reached well beyond Europe. Among early American medical imprints we find editions of Underwood, Armstrong, and Rosénstein and original works such Samuel Bard on diphtheria and James Mann on infantile diarrhea. Typically, these authors divided their volumes into discussions of child care at certain ages and on particular afflictions. Even when they dealt with illnesses suffered by adults as well as children, such as constipation or diarrhea, they focused on the specific causes in children and developed therapies especially for the young. Rosén von Rosenstein, for instance, described a large number of feeding problems that he held accountable for producing diarrheas in children. Flatulence, or “wind,” counted among the avoidable problems evoked by poor nutritional habits or inappropriate foods or feeding methods. Convulsions, frequent in children, appeared under several labels and were attributed to various causes. Difficult teething was often seen as an illness in itself or an affliction that presaged more serious diseases in later childhood, such as smallpox, measles, and other infectious diseases. These physicians also recognized that children could suffer from mental problems, even if they ascribed many of these to physical malfunctions or disorders (as they did for adults, as well). Many disturbances, such as bed-wetting, nightmares, stammering, and lisping, fit better into the realm of behavioral problems rather than in disorders of the mind per se, but physicians increasingly came to include these problems as issues on which they were fully capable of giving advice and prescribing treatments. This tendency also pertained to the disease of masturbation.

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CONCEPTION AND BIRTH Throughout most of the eighteenth century, two classical theories of reproduction—the Aristotelian and the Hippocratic/Galenic—molded how learned people reasoned about sexuality and reproduction. Aristotle believed both men and women produced what he called “sperma.” At conception, the active male sperma animated menstrual blood to produce life. More influential than the Aristotelian tradition, however, was the Hippocratic/Galenic theory in which both sexes contributed in equal measure to conception. This two-seed, or semence, theory lingered through the eighteenth century. Equally important and just as divergent were ideas on gestation and fetal development. Again, two positions vied for supremacy: the preformationist and the epigenetic. Preformation argued that minute life forms existed in the parent’s seed (egg or sperm). In the womb, this miniature life merely drew sustenance from the maternal matrix and grew larger. The epigenetic theory proposed a sequential development of the embryo from more primitive to more advanced. Both ideas competed for legitimacy during the Enlightenment and generated one of the longest and most interesting physiological debates of the time. The early enlightenment figure Nicolas Malebranche, for instance, argued that each embryo contained an infinite series of ever smaller animals. Several other enlightenment representatives, such as Georges-Louis Leclerc de Buffon, Pierre-Louis Maupertuis, and Jean Astruc, also accepted forms of preformation. The rival theory of epigenesis also drew major supporters such as Caspar Friedrich Wolff. Not until the late nineteenth century, however, was preformation discarded as a viable explanation.6 The Enlightenment inspired a great deal of thought about the care of pregnant women. Frank, for instance, in his multivolume A System of Complete Medical Police (1780–1788), commented extensively on maternal and infant health, proposing not only rules of conduct for expectant and new mothers but also advocating state intervention to protect women and children.7 Such initiatives characterized enlightened concerns for children and their health while anchoring these concerns to a more general program of societal improvement and engineering. There was certainly much to concern state officials and the wider public alike. Even in the mid- to late eighteenth century, infant mortality was often described with the Biblical phrase “the slaughter of the innocents.” One out of every four infants died in their first year; about fifty percent of all mortality occurred before age five. Some pronounced regional differences in infant mortality existed. More babies survived in areas or among groups where

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maternal breast-feeding was a common cultural practice. In the American colonies, infant mortality in New England (and in general) was lower than overall European rates; it was, however, significantly higher in the Chesapeake and, especially, among slave children in the American South. Mothers and infants alike could die in childbirth, although maternal mortality, while remaining a pressing concern of enlightened thinkers, slowly declined over the course of the eighteenth century. The reduction of infant mortality appeared absolutely necessary, and Frank’s program for lessening it included various measures that included state intervention and attitudinal changes. He proposed removing the stigma from illegitimate motherhood, improving midwifery, encouraging maternal breast-feeding, and building foundling homes. These concerns echoed almost everywhere that espoused populationism, a program of coordinated attempts to increase the size and health of populations. At the same time, men began entering the lying-in chamber in greater numbers as midwives. This phenomenon also indicated a new interest in childbirth as a medical specialty— obstetrics. Throughout the eighteenth century, schools and training courses for midwives and male midwives and the establishment of lying-in hospitals and charities for poor women formed a common initiative to cut maternal and infant mortality and to nurture healthy citizens for the state, literally from the cradle up.8 Likewise integral to this program was a flood of literature directed toward pregnant women that advised them on diet, exercise, and other matters relevant to their health and that of their unborn children. Virtually every reformer viewed maternal breast-feeding as the most efficient and reliable way to significantly lower the number of infant deaths. Medical writers and concerned philosophes, like Rousseau, warned women against the evils of sending their children out to nurse with “mercenary” women—that is, wet nurses. The philosophes were almost as virulent in their condemnation of wet nurses as they were in their attacks on midwives and on unnatural mothers who refused to breast-feed their infants. They ascribed much higher mortality rates to wet-nursed children and urged mothers not to neglect the sacred duty incumbent on them. Such advice appeared in more popular forms, as well, and was as much a part of American as European life. For example, a Wilmington, Delaware, publisher brought out Hugh Smith’s The Female Monitor, Consisting of a Series of Letters to Married Women on Nursing and the Management of Children in 1801. Wet nurses were suspected not only of neglecting their charges but also of communicating diseases to their nurslings; the most feared contagion was syphilis. When maternal nursing proved impossible (for whatever reason), writers of advice literature instructed mothers and fathers how to select wet nurses properly and also, if all else failed, how best to feed infants

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artificially. Rosenstein’s book, for instance, reviewed and evaluated various older ways of nourishing infants whose mothers could not nurse them, while the Frenchman Joseph Raulin and the Italian Filippo Baldini advocated glass vessels as the forerunners of today’s baby bottles.9 At the birth itself, physicians counseled mothers and fathers to arrange for the prompt assistance of qualified attendants: trained midwives, male midwives, and surgeons. Parents should shun the advice of old women and avoid everything that smacked of magic and superstition. Enlightened attitudes were generally hostile to midwives, whom they often referred to as murderers of the human race. The article “accoucheur” in the Encyclopédie vilified the abilities of the midwives then practicing in France.10 (Historical scholarship, however, has amply demonstrated that midwives were by no means universally poorly trained or ignorant.11) Difficult births were not common, but they were hardly unknown. Universally feared were childbed (puerperal) fever, eclampsia, and hemorrhages as there was little that could be done. Even though most babies came safely into the world, the hazards of even a normal childbirth proved considerable. Lacerations, trauma, loss of blood, and generalized weakness formed frequent sequelae. Sometimes children could only be delivered by the use of instruments, such as forceps, and occasionally it was necessary to call in a surgeon to dismember the child in utero and remove the child in pieces to save the mother’s life. Obstetrical forceps were in use in Western Europe since the early eighteenth century, but only men—surgeons or male midwives—were authorized to wield them. Enlightened opinion was divided on the use of forceps. Some found them a useful invention; others, like the great surgeon-anatomist William Hunter, believed that only one tool was legitimately permitted at birth: the soft obstetrical hand. Not all children came into the world as their parents expected, and the birth of what many termed “monsters”—children with badly misshapen heads; malformed bodies; too few or too many limbs, fingers, or toes; or as conjoined twins—distressed parents, midwives, and physicians alike. For a long time, people regarded such unfortunate births as prodigies and portents or evidence of evil or bestiality. Enlightened opinion, however, held that even the most deformed births were human (and should be, for instance, baptized and not killed), for they believed only humans can be born of humans. Other congenital conditions, especially those involving the genitals, raised considerable anxiety. Such instances resonated with concerns over bodily wholeness and what impaired integrity implied for the future of children. Anxieties about ambiguous or malformed genitalia sent parents hunting for medical aid or legal assistance. Similarly distressing problems, like cleft palate, clubfoot, or hunched back,

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received discussion in medical texts and resulted in a series of operations and treatments designed to right them, with differential success.12 Physicians increasingly directed their attention to correcting physical disabilities and deformities in children. Nicolas Andry de Beauregard wrote a volume on orthopedics that, besides explaining how to correct physical defects, also advised on the treatment of rickets and ringworm. Medical men developed programs for what many called the education of the body and sought to produce upright, strong, and supple forms rather than misshapen, weak, and stiff ones. A whole range of devices from corsets to frames, supports, and special shoes were devised to help children grow straight or to align those whose forms were already bent. The softening of bones caused by rickets (a nutritional deficiency disease that Francis Glisson first fully described in 1650) bowed legs; in such cases, physicians prescribed the use of splints and braces. Folk practices continued to advocate swaddling to make limbs grow straight or head binding to produce well-formed craniums. Although the Enlightenment did not originate medical advice literature, its efforts swelled the quantity and, more importantly, reoriented its direction. Experts, especially physicians, gave more advice, and more of it addressed the earliest stages of life. These recommendations began with birth. The umbilical cord should not be severed until it stopped pulsating, and then it should be cut diagonally with a clean knife or sharp scissors kept for that purpose. (A common cause of newborn death, especially in the Old South and among slaves, was neonatal tetanus caused by improper treatment of the umbilical stump.) Others counseled that newborns should be sponged with water or milk directly after delivery and kept clean thereafter. Although some dissent existed on the matter, most physicians strongly discouraged tight swaddling. Likewise, advice writers warned mothers not to take small children into their beds to prevent overlaying and accidentally smothering their infants. This strand of enlightened writing implicitly accepted that parents either were indifferent to their children or ignorant of the proper precepts of care. Scholars have shown, however, that parents, far from neglecting or being apathetic to their offspring, were very much concerned with their welfare and often went to great lengths to care for them, nursing them tenderly in sickness and consulting a wide variety of healers (often at great expense) to restore their health or improve their quality of life. Especially among groups able to read and affluent enough to purchase advice literature (which was also available in quite cheap forms such as pamphlets, chapbooks, and newspapers), the demand for such information further stimulated an already large supply.

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FIGURE 9.1: Top: Nurse failing to support baby’s head properly. Bottom: Nurse using a neck-straightening device. From Nicolas Andry de Boisrgard, Orthopedia or the Art of Correcting and Preventing Deformities in Children (1743). Wellcome Library, London.

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GROWING UP: CARE AND BEHAVIORAL ISSUES While the concept of the tabula rasa, or blank slate, predated Locke (Aristotle and Aquinas, among others, used the term), Locke’s understanding of it strongly influenced enlightenment ideas of how children matured mentally. For Locke, the ability to shape the mind was a learned process. Likewise, while the idea of stages of life, or dègres d’âge, was ancient, Rousseau’s delineation of three steps that included infans (infancy), puer (childhood), and adolescence introduced a truly developmental schemata by arguing that what happened at one stage inevitably molded the next. Rousseau applied this axiom to both physical and mental growth. One can, therefore, trace the beginnings of child psychology to the middle of the eighteenth century. Rousseau’s work emphasized forming a child’s body and mind in unison, although numerous precursors and contemporaries, such as Locke, also took up the subject. Increasingly, however, physicians set the standards and composed prescriptive literature. Although this tendency toward the medicalization of childhood, elevating the physician to the position of expert in all matters of puericulture, would only come to fruition in the nineteenth century, the eighteenth century laid the groundwork. Physicians advised on proper care for young children, supplementing (although hardly replacing) word-of-mouth transmissions from mothers to daughters or, for that matter, from fathers to sons. The range and variety of this advice literature grew as the century wore on. One excellent example of a field in which physicians played an ever-greater role in setting standards and advising parents was child sexuality. Throughout the eighteenth century, there was little sense that the very young child was in any way a sexual creature as Sigmund Freud would later maintain. However, particularly in early adolescence, the sexuality of the child (or young adult) often manifested itself in what was often labeled the horrible sin of masturbation. Masturbation in the late eighteenth century rapidly became something other than a sin; it was a problem bearing serious medical consequences for the individual and for society. Physicians defined masturbation as a disease and prescribed its treatment. Medical concerns about the physical and mental effects of masturbation date from the early eighteenth century. The pamphlet titled Onania, distributed in London in 1716, warned that masturbation caused epilepsy and impotence among a long list of virtually every conceivable ill. The work of the Swiss physician Samuel-Auguste Tissot, however, most deeply influenced medical men, philosophes, and, one assumes, the general public. Drawing evidence from his own practice in Lausanne, Tissot argued

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that semen was a vital fluid, the loss of which through masturbation caused many diseases and afflictions: impotence, atrophy of the generative organs, epilepsy, general nervous disorders, blurred vision, severe headaches, rheumatism, and several others. Masturbating adults bred weak children. These effects were more certain and serious when masturbation began in childhood. Tissot viewed the practice as harmful in females as in males, although more common in the latter. His ideas, published in 1760 as L’Onanisme, were hailed by numerous enlightenment figures such as Voltaire and Kant as scientifically and medically sound and found their way into a wide range of publications on puericulture. Tissot and those who followed his lead developed therapies that included exercise, dietary restrictions, blisters, and purgatives as well as recommending loose clothing and devices such as chastity belts or restrictive cages for the male genitalia to prevent self-abuse. In many respects, the intervention of physicians into (bad) habits, like masturbation, significantly advanced the medicalization of childhood and child rearing. Doctors redefined and treated behaviors as medical problems rather than as sins or merely undesirable or impolite actions. We know little about the mental illnesses of children in early modern times, and it does not seem the Enlightenment gave it much thought, although concern was often expressed for children whose development took a worrisome, strange, or unusual course. Children who did not walk or talk at the appropriate age might be considered slow or, worse, idiots, but special help was only occasionally sought. Yet the Enlightenment also gave far more attention to the teaching and care of the disabled child: the deaf, the mute, the blind, and the autistic. Being born deaf carried especially serious consequences because many people believed such children to be mentally deficient as well. The Enlightenment expressed a great interest in general questions of sense deprivation. One immediately thinks of Denis Diderot’s works on deaf-mutes and the blind.13 Several people pioneered ways to teach the deaf to speak and the blind to read. Physicians proffered a good deal of this advice but by no means all. Perhaps the best known case of experimentation with sensory deprivation during the Enlightenment comes from the story of Victor, “the wild boy of Aveyron.”14 It is usually believed he was abandoned because he was deaf, although others have suggested he was autistic. In either case, it is clear that physicians played a major role in diagnosing disabilities and crafting means to educate the deaf, the blind, the autistic, and the retarded. The most important of these was a series of institutions set up for those afflicted. In the closing two decades of the century, the linguist Valentin Haüy established a school for the blind in France; similar schools included the Royal School for the Blind in Liverpool and the

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School for the Indigent Blind in Surrey. The abbé Charles de l’Epée organized one of the first institutes for deaf children in 1755. Several others developed tactile reading systems long before Louis Braille worked out his more elaborate cell system. And it was the physician Jean-Marc Itard who worked with Victor, admittedly with limited success. The mentally retarded child or the child who exhibited bizarre, antisocial, or perhaps even criminal behavior was more likely to be sent to a physician for medical care (or perhaps be institutionalized) than branded as possessed and either persecuted as a witch or exorcized. Nonetheless, exorcism persisted for such conditions, although the philosophes generally railed against it and like superstitious practices.

THE DISEASES OF CHILDHOOD The diseases of childhood were many and their demographic effects, in terms of mortality and morbidity, stimulated many enlightened writings and programs dedicated to preserving the lives of subjects and citizens and ushering them into the world of adulthood as healthy and industrious beings. The aforementioned issues of diet and infant care were, of course, critically important. The years of childhood beyond neonatality and infancy, however, also remained perilous. Even in the eighteenth century, death cut a wide swath through families. Indeed, it was a lucky family whose parents lived to see their children marry and breed new generations. Few families were spared childhood deaths. Children who survived to adulthood had often traversed a Job-like path of woes. Youngsters were peculiarly subject to vermin infections, especially worms, which weakened their constitutions, but also to skin ailments such as a head condition called the scald (because it left children almost bald) and scabies (almost universally known as “the itch”), lice, and other parasites. Hookworm and helminthic infestations were especially common in the hot and humid climates of the American South. Worm medicines existed, but they were often toxic and frequently ineffective. Perhaps a more urgent problem, and one more amenable to resolution, was how to protect children from the accidents of home, hearth, and farm. Because these misfortunes occurred so frequently, enlightened writers worked hard to make parents aware of the dangers of open fireplaces, sharp instruments, farmyard tools, and unfenced wells. Injuries suffered when young often blighted adult lives, creating invalid and unproductive members of society or even charges on poor relief systems. Pertinent advice about these and a variety of other matters to preserve young lives could also be found in the flood of advice literature directed toward families of all classes. Avoidance of disease became one of the main messages, as was

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the advice to treat ailments at their onset rather than wait until they worsened into incurability.15 Perhaps the most important effect of this literature, if we can measure effect at all, is that it emphasized to parents, or at least attempted to do so, the sense that children required special protection. Some writers went so far as to propagandize that children actually belonged not to their parents but to the state. While it seems relatively certain this line of argumentation had little impact on the majority of parents, enlightenment propaganda promoted the idea that children were economic and political assets. Of course, the most deadly threat to children as well as to adults remained epidemics and infectious diseases. All ages were relatively equally susceptible to plague, typhus, and tuberculosis, although the very young and the frail most often failed to survive. Yet here, too, the eighteenth century began to differ from preceding eras. The last major epidemic of plague in Western Europe struck Marseille in 1720–1721. The most serious epidemic diseases for children in the eighteenth century, therefore, were bacillary dysentery (the bloody flux), infantile diarrheas, diphtheria, and, above all, smallpox. While none of these was exclusive to children, young children were the most common victims and the most likely to die. Infants succumbed rapidly to diarrhea, and often little could be done to save them, although maternal breast-feeding and attention to cleanliness certainly helped as preventives. Similar observations can be made about malaria and influenza, which were more virulent in the eighteenth than in the seventeenth century. Both were especially deadly to the elderly and the very young. In the swampy parts of Europe, in Mississippi, and in Louisiana, malaria killed many children. Diphtheria, too, was lethal to young children. In Spain, it was known as garrotilla (from garrote, a device used to strangle victims). Characterized by an extremely severe sore throat and a bull neck (one massively swollen) combined with a copious flow of pus and blood from throat and nose and the formation of an adherent false membrane, malignant throat caused many of its sufferers to suffocate slowly and agonizingly. Although it was probably a quite old disease, physicians did not recognize its epidemic qualities until the seventeenth and particularly the eighteenth century. The most important disease associated with childhood in the eighteenth century and the one that resonated most strongly in enlightened writings and actions was, without a doubt, smallpox. Smallpox is no longer an active infection, having been successfully eradicated by a World Health Organization campaign. Before its eradication, however, smallpox was an acute viral infection transmitted by droplet infection. Those who contracted smallpox at first presented relatively minor symptoms, such as vague aches and a generalized lassitude, which soon became alarming: high fever, severe pain in the limbs,

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and splitting headaches. In the later stages, some children suffered frightening convulsions. The typical red rash appeared about two to five days after the initial infection. Virgin populations—that is, those with no experience of the disease—suffered most grievously, as in the cases of the myriad child and adult indigenous peoples of the New World, who perished by the millions. Among Europeans who had settled in the New World (such as in Boston during the 1720s), however, children were the principal victims of smallpox, just as in the Old World. Despite the horrors of the disease, those who survived acquired lifelong immunity. Thus, in what epidemiologists call seasoned populations—those with a lengthy experience of the disease, like the peoples of the Old World (Asia, Africa, and Europe)—the disease became principally a scourge of children. In early modern Europe, smallpox was known as “the river that all most cross”; it was a disease that most children would get, and they would either survive or die. Smallpox probably accounted for about ten to fifteen percent of all deaths, and most of its victims, up to eighty percent by usual estimates, were children under the age of ten. Smallpox occurred in major epidemics in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries but reached a new peak of virulence in the eighteenth. No available treatments could halt, slow, or ameliorate the progress of the disease. Although the cause of transmission was unknown, most people considered it contagious, and governments usually implemented quarantine measures to contain outbreaks. But smallpox also spurred the first major attempt to prevent or avoid disease: inoculation. Smallpox inoculation, however, was by no means a discovery of the Enlightenment. It seems that the first attempts to inoculate children were made in India about 1000 c.e. Powder from smallpox scabs was inhaled to give the patient a hopefully mild case. Folk practices such as these, as well as the habit of allowing healthy children to play with those showing only a few smallpox pustules and having, therefore, relatively benign cases, were widespread. In the 1720s, Europe embarked on a new way of inoculating. Lady Mary Wortley Montague, the wife of the English ambassador to the Ottoman Porte, was herself scarred, literally and figuratively, by a bout of smallpox. Writing to a friend in England, she spoke of a practice that she described as “entirely harmless.” “There is,” she went on, “a set of old women [here], who make it their business to perform the operation, every autumn . . . [and] thousands undergo this operation . . . [and there] is no example of anyone that has died in it.”16 When she returned to England, she had her daughter inoculated. In the procedure, the operator made one or more small, somewhat deep incisions in arm or leg and inserted a scab and some pustulous material

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from an active but mild smallpox case. If all went well, the inoculee would then develop a real case of smallpox and recover, thereby acquiring immunity from the disease in its natural form. After the royal family followed Lady Mary’s example and had their children inoculated, the method took hold in England. Support for inoculation grew elsewhere, as well, equally encouraged by royal example. But inoculation was apparently never quite as popular on the continent nor did it spread as quickly there as in England. Enthusiasm for inoculation (or variolation) became a touchstone of enlightened belief; rejection of the process seemingly testified to an inability to shed religious prejudice and superstitions. Many enlightenment figures took up the cause of inoculation and propagandized fervently for it. In England, the physician Hans Sloane and the surgeon Charles Maitland worked to popularize inoculation and improve its technique. Benjamin Franklin, deeply distressed by the death of his son from smallpox, also wrote in its favor. The most famous contemporary proponent of inoculation was Voltaire. In his Philosophical or English Letters (1734), Voltaire extravagantly praised the English for embracing inoculation and castigated other Europeans, especially the French, for objecting to the practice. He and other enlightened proponents, such as the surgeon Charles-Marie La Condamine, identified stupidity, religious obscurantism, and superstitious beliefs as the primary reasons for opposition to inoculation and excoriated parents who were willing to sacrifice their children because they could not separate themselves from such anachronistic and unenlightened convictions. Yet Voltaire and many other supporters overstated the case, as inoculation was not entirely safe. Moreover, objections to the process did not stem solely from religious beliefs. Among the opponents of inoculation were numerous learned and enlightened men who felt there was not yet sufficient evidence to justify inoculating over allowing children to catch the pox naturally. Quite rightly, they feared the possibility of an inoculee sparking a full-blown epidemic; in addition, they worried inoculation could spread other diseases (especially syphilis or erysipelas) or cause severe infections at the inoculation site. Not all proponents of inoculation were part of the Enlightenment. The Puritan Reverend Cotton Mather, notorious for his role in the Salem witch trials, was a strong advocate of inoculation. Mather’s position provides an excellent example of the complexities involved in the inoculation campaigns. Besides being a deeply religious man, Mather was also a member of the Royal Society and a reader of its Philosophical Transactions, where he may have first encountered reports from Turkey on inoculation. By the 1770s, government programs vigorously pushed inoculation, and, under state intervention, it became a frequent, if by no means ubiquitous,

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practice at least in Western Europe and Scandinavia. The far safer process of vaccination supplanted it in the early nineteenth century. In 1796, the naturalist, physician, and member of the Royal Society Edward Jenner inoculated a young boy with lymph acquired from a pustule of cowpox. Common folk knowledge in dairy regions taught that people who contracted cowpox were thereafter safe from smallpox. Cowpox virus was closely related to smallpox but produced only a very mild and never deadly disease in humans. Vaccination, however, failed to confer lifelong immunity, and revaccination at intervals was necessary. Whereas popular enthusiasm for inoculation had grown only slowly, vaccination, despite some opposition, took hold much more rapidly; that transformation must at least in part be attributed to the campaign for smallpox inoculation in the previous century and the subsequent efforts of governments to promote and regulate first inoculation and then vaccination. The impact of inoculation and vaccination was profound. Deaths from smallpox dropped substantially in populations that accepted either or both procedures. Some scholars also argued that widespread inoculation and then vaccination had a positive effect on population growth, and demographic evidence from England and Sweden seems to support this conclusion.

MEDICAL INTERVENTIONS: CARING AND CURING Medical care for children, like medical care for virtually all people, began at home and occurred principally within the interlocking circles of family, friends, and neighbors. Every family treasured its store of home remedies, while neighbors, cunning folk, and wise women provided additional natural and supernatural assistance. Herbal remedies, such as willow bark tea, hemlock, or mandragora, were given to children as well as adults to ease pain and reduce fevers. Ergot was known to cause abortions and was used to induce labor or speed deliveries. Children whose behavior was weird or even threatening might have the spell unlocked by a folk healer. Amulets to assist in teething, charms to remove warts, and incantations to drive out demons were common. Cunning folk and conjurers practiced on adults and children alike. In the American South, slave medicine often relied on conjuring magic as well as herbal remedies. One black healer used “chinaberry root, poke roots, and bluestone” to treat scrofula (a frequent tubercular infection in children); others drew on supernatural aid.17 Enlightenment writers railed against these superstitious practices but were unable to uproot them. Parents recognized that little help existed for some afflictions and acknowledged that the best treatments remained time and prayer.

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FIGURE 9.2: Woodcut of a child modeling proper clothing for both males and females

to wear from age three to seven or eight. From Bernhard Christoph Faust, GesundheitsKatechismus zum Gebrauch in den Schulen und zu allgemeinem Nutzen des Schwäbischen Landvolks auch häuslichem Unterricht (1795). Wellcome Library, London.

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Female family members provided most nursing and medical care for young children, although fathers, too, were often actively involved with their children’s health. Enlightenment medical literature about children did little to shift that focus, although it sought to change how parents cared for their offspring or selected treatment providers. The most obvious example was the almost canonical advice to breast-feed infants. Yet that vociferous campaign formed only part of a much wider program of instruction that included medically informed proposals for clothing infants and young children and on proper physical exercise for both girls and boys. Authors decried swaddling and recommended loose garments that allowed young limbs free play.18 Finally, dietary advice was set down, often in considerable detail and in keeping with the importance dietetics played in early modern medicine more generally. Several medical writers (including Frank and Tissot) and pedagogues (such Rousseau and Faust)

FIGURE 9.3: Leg pieces for the treatment of rickets in children from the early eighteenth

century. The design is based on suits of body armor. Wellcome Library, London.

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worried about the effects of too much study on young minds and bodies and advocated the introduction of gymnastics in schools. Schools, as well, were able to teach older children the principles of health. By the end of the century, numerous rules and health catechisms existed for use in public classrooms, such as Bernhard Christoph Faust’s famous Gesundheits-Katechismus, which the territory of Hesse introduced into elementary education in the 1790s. It was subsequently reissued and translated into several languages. Faust’s book also crossed the Atlantic to be published as Catechism of Health, for the Use of Schools and for Domestic Instruction (1795). The French physician and professor Jean Astruc advanced a new idea of the physician as a family practitioner and, thus, also contributed to the development of child or pediatric medicine. Astruc argued that children formed proper subjects of medical interventions and could be treated with exactly the same therapies as suited their elders. Unlike many who considered childhood diseases untreatable, he was optimistic, even extravagantly so, in believing that virtually all childhood diseases could be healed or distressing conditions righted if caught in time (a message virtually all advice literature repeated). For instance, he maintained of rickets that “the disorder is moderate, and easily removed in the beginning, if proper remedies are used.” Astruc, however, continued to hold parents primarily responsible for the health of their children even while promoting medicine for children. He insisted that parents cultivate a watchful eye and at the first indication of serious illness take their children to physicians or surgeons. It would be somewhat false, however, to portray Astruc’s position as an advance in pediatric medicine. Astruc viewed children as objects of medical care, but his remedies for children were indistinguishable from those he prescribed for adults; they were not specifically gauged to fit the needs and constitutions of youngsters.19 Thus, throughout the eighteenth century, physicians became ever more active in child medicine, and, gradually, the perception grew that children should be treated differently since children and their diseases differed from those that afflicted adults. Interest in pediatrics overlapped as well with commitment for providing medicine for the poor; the two fit neatly into the populationist framework. One of the most important forms of medical intervention, therefore, was the profusion of medical advice literature increasingly sponsored by governments. Not only did the amount of literature for physicians on matters of child health and illness increase manifold, but the availability of advice literature for the laity grew just as strikingly. Sometimes one found it embedded in more general “Advice to the People on Their Health.” Yet a plethora of publications solely

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about children and directed to their parents and guardians also flooded off the presses. Toward the end of the century, the French physician Nicolas Chambon de Montaux published works directed toward the medical laity that followed the child from conception (Des Maladies de la grossesse, 1785) through its first years (Des Maladies des enfants, 1799), giving pertinent advice at least to those parents who could read and afford the lengthy volumes. One could also seek such guidance in cheaply printed pamphlets, farmers’ almanacs, calendars, newspapers, and journals. Discussion on the best ways of providing popular medical treatment could be found in spectatorial publications as well as in more specialized journals devoted to public health, which proliferated rapidly in these years. How often hospitals accepted children as patients in the eighteenth century is not clear. It seems children were occasionally admitted to all the various sorts of institutions that went by the name “hospital” in the eighteenth century. Nonetheless, most care for children occurred at home, whether or not a physician or surgeon was called in.20 Enlightenment concerns with the health of children, however, gradually stimulated the reform of older institutions for children, such as orphanages and foundling homes, and the establishment of newer ones (including special facilities for disabled children). Ideas about scientific planning and purposeful charity combined with rational religion and mercantile wealth to generate a whole series of new institutions, some of which specifically benefitted children, such as the Foundling Home that the rich, retired sea captain Thomas Coram established in the 1740s. The story of children’s hospitals, however, effectively belongs to the nineteenth century; one of the first, the Hôpital des enfants malades, opened in Paris in 1802. Still, its foundation certainly can be legitimately considered a brainchild of the late Enlightenment, albeit one filtered through the changes of the French Revolution. More pertinent was the establishment of dispensaries for the poor and charities for lying-in women. Here, too, enlightened planning combined with religious motivations and an emphasis on the sanctity of the family. Like many other institutions established in these decades, the London Lying-In Charity for Delivering Poor Married Women in Their Own Habitations (1758) assisted only respectably married women. The Société de charité maternelle (1788) cared for “a class of poor for whom there are neither hospitals nor foundations in Paris—namely, the legitimate infants of the poor.” Other similarly motivated charities served a wider population. In the city of Hamburg, the General Poor Relief paid midwives and surgeons to assist both married and unmarried women in childbirth, following the axioms of men like Frank who urged care for all mothers because “the condition of pregnancy in unwed mothers is as

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estimable as in married women; both carry a citizen and a creature of God’s making under their hearts.”21 Dispensaries for the poor also treated children, although some dispensaries, such as the one Dr. George Armstrong set up in Red Lion’s Square, London, for the infant poor, catered solely to their needs.

CONCLUSION During the Enlightenment, several trends already long in motion, such as populationism and a more active program of state intervention into many areas of life, gained momentum. The Enlightenment’s general emphasis on education, improvement, and social engineering bore fruit for puericulture generally and pediatrics more particularly. Although the period reflected an unprecedented investment of energy, time, and resources in the health of children, many of those efforts would not bear fruit for decades or even centuries. Especially important was the Enlightenment’s emphases on child rearing and family life, both of which would eventually lead to important developments in health care for children.

CHAPTER TEN

World Contexts adriana silvia benzaquén

The long eighteenth century, the Age of Enlightenment, has been called “the first genuinely global era.”1 The expansion of international trade and the growth of the Western European powers’ overseas empires facilitated the circulation of goods, people, and ideas. To what extent did the increasing interactions between the West and the rest of the world shape and reshape understandings and experiences of childhood and family in this period? Western religious and political authorities strove to spread (and often to impose) Western views and practices—such as Christian sexual morality and marriage, patriarchal gender relations, and the new concept of childhood—among other cultures with varying success. In turn, Western authorities, intellectuals, and the reading public at large were exposed to the existence of other cultures, family structures, forms of social and personal relationships, and child-rearing customs and were forced to rethink their own values, attitudes, and practices in response to those of others. Moreover, the movement of peoples across the globe and the multiplication of cross-cultural encounters gave rise to new ethnicities, hybrid cultures, and social and racial hierarchies that were both rigid and unstable.

WESTERN MISSIONARIES OVERSEAS The Catholic missionaries who arrived in the Americas following the European discovery and conquest of the New World brought with them monogamous marriage, Christian notions of sexual purity, and Western views on the

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subordination of women to men, the proper relation between parents and children, and the intervention of religious and secular authorities in the life of families and the education of children. They viewed the native peoples’ adoption of Western models of marriage, sexuality, family, gender, and childhood as essential to their goal to convert and civilize those peoples. To the native peoples of the New World, encounters with Europeans in the late fifteenth and sixteenth centuries brought death and devastation as a result of epidemics, wars, exploitation, and cultural collapse. The early missionaries—members of the Franciscan and Jesuit orders—attempted to reestablish Indian communities and, in so doing, protect the Indians, whom they perceived as primitive and uncorrupted, from unbridled exploitation and from the vices and immorality of the European conquerors and settlers. The Jesuits founded the first of many mission villages in the Guaraní region (today’s Paraguay, Brazil, and Argentina) in 1610. By the early eighteenth century, more than one hundred thousand Guaraní Indians lived in Jesuit-run villages, attracted in part by the Jesuits’ advocacy of the Guaraní cause before the Spanish authorities and Jesuit support against the Portuguese settlers who wanted to exploit or enslave them. The missions thrived until the Jesuits’ expulsion from the Portuguese colonies in 1759 and the Spanish colonies in 1767. Their primary purpose was to transform the native peoples; to substitute a sedentary, regimented agricultural society for the native nomadic, hunting-and-gathering way of life; and to enlist native (more or less willing) participation in the missionaries’ dream of recreating a pure Christianity.2 The missionaries enforced the use of clothes; restricted sex before marriage (and within marriage accepted only certain sexual acts); opposed concubinage, polygamy, and homosexuality; and banned divorce. To prevent premarital sexual activity, they segregated young men and women. They condemned abortion and the killing of deformed babies, common practices among some Indian groups. Whereas in many native societies women worked in the fields and gardens and performed sundry household and child-rearing chores while the men fished, hunted, made war, and cleared the garden plots, in the missions the men were required to do women’s work in the fields, as well. Women lost the autonomy and the prominent spiritual, economic, and social roles they had enjoyed in some Native American cultures as both missionaries and secular authorities reinforced patriarchal power, as women’s activities were monitored and their behavior controlled, and as the Western model of the father-headed nuclear family became the norm in much of the American continent.3 The missionaries’ attempts to reform and Christianize the native family and native sexuality were only partially successful. While most Indian

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residents of the missions embraced or at least tolerated the new norms, discontent concerning the missionaries’ sexual restrictions and the harsh punishments meted out for deviations and transgressions led many of them to leave the missions and contributed to episodes of resistance and rebellion. The Guaraní shamans resisted the imposition of Christian sexual morality and monogamy while looking down on the celibate Jesuits (in Guaraní culture, powerful men were expected to have many sexual partners). To some extent, the missionaries had to accommodate the Indians’ needs and desires. For instance, early eighteenth-century Jesuit censuses show that, unlike Western European couples who married relatively late in this period (mid- to late twenties), Guaraní men and women in the missions married quite young. By accepting or encouraging early marriages, the Jesuits not only complied with Guaraní wishes but also hoped to curb premarital sex.4 When, as was often the case, adult Indians refused to embrace Christianity and Western values, Franciscan and Jesuit missionaries turned their attention to native children. Missionaries viewed children as more malleable and open to their influence, and they assumed that once the children were Christianized they would help in the conversion of their parents and other relatives or, failing this, would turn away from the older generation and denounce elders who held on to traditional beliefs and rituals. The missionaries advocated European child-rearing methods and urged native parents to abandon their own approaches, which they deemed too lenient. In the missions, children were no longer allowed to run free and learn from watching relatives and friends but were employed at simple agricultural tasks and errands or attended school, where they were taught religion, reading, writing, and mathematics (usually in their own languages). In thus targeting children, the missionaries undermined the native family and, according to one historian, created “generational conflict in native society.”5 In French North America, the Indian nations were not conquered (as they were in the Spanish and Portuguese colonies) but retained their autonomy and freedom. Some tribes established commercial exchanges and alliances with French fur traders and administrators, while others made war on them. Under these circumstances, Catholic missionaries confronted different obstacles. In the late 1660s, the Jesuit Jean Pierron, convinced that “to establish Christianity on a solid basis among these peoples, it was necessary to make use of reading and writing,” spent “a month teaching both to our Iroquois children.” But the children were not as receptive or malleable after all: “I did not have a sufficient supply of the little rewards that one needs to keep children interested in this pursuit.”6 For the Ursuline nun Marie de l’Incarnation, who arrived in

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New France in 1639 to convert and educate the Iroquois, the “savages” were her “dear brethren,” but she expected them to give up their customs and beliefs and embrace her own. The Ursuline convent in Quebec, where Marie de l’Incarnation lived under the rule of enclosure, received many native girls from newly converted families: “When they are given to us, they are as naked as a worm, and one must wash them from head to foot because of the grease that their parents have smeared all over their bodies. And no matter how diligently one does it or how often one changes their clothes, it takes a long time before one can get rid of the vermin caused by the abundance of their grease.” By the end of her life, in 1668, Marie de l’Incarnation’s assessment of her success was mixed: “We find docility and wit [in the girls]; but when one least expects it, they climb over our walls and run in the woods with their parents, where they find more pleasure than in all the attractions of our French houses. . . . Besides, the Savages love their children extraordinarily, and when [the parents] know they are sad, they’ll do everything possible to have them back.”7 Although most girls only stayed in the convent for a while, Marie de l’Incarnation claimed that once they returned to their free life they maintained their new faith and values (especially adherence to monogamous marriage). Missionaries, like other Europeans, equated civilization with adulthood, maturity, and rationality; thus, they tended to approach the American native peoples, adult and children alike, as children or childish. Their attitude was paternalistic, benign, and well-meaning but infantilizing nonetheless. The infantilization of the native peoples meant that, even as their traditional cultures were tampered with, destroyed, or rendered practically impossible, the missionaries did not offer (or allow) the Indians full or equal access to European Christian culture. Recent historians have emphasized the native peoples’ agency in their exchanges with the Western missionaries, arguing that, when the Indians did not reject the missionaries’ efforts to Christianize and indoctrinate them altogether, they appropriated or adapted those elements of the colonizing culture that could be useful to them. As David Sweet suggests, the native peoples’ main form of resistance was holding on to their beliefs and “teaching their own experience and their own understandings to their children.”8

THE ENLIGHTENMENT AND TRAVEL LITERATURE The activities of religious missionaries exemplify some of the ways in which Western models of the family and childhood were introduced into non-Western societies in an age of European expansion. Non-Western peoples were practically unable (or perhaps unwilling) “to propagate their values in Europe in

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FIGURE 10.1: From Louis-Armand de Lom d’Arce, Baron de Lahontan, New Voyages

to North-America (1703), vol. 2. Courtesy of Thomas Fisher Rare Book Library, University of Toronto.

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return,” but this is not to say that they had no influence on Western conceptions and practices.9 If, as is widely accepted, it was in the Age of Enlightenment that the modern constructions of childhood and family emerged—the innocent but malleable and educable child; the loving, private, father-headed, and child-centered family—it is crucial to remember that this process took place in the context of growing curiosity about, and availability of information on, non-Western cultures. Enlightened Europeans (mainly men, but also a growing number of educated women) evinced an insatiable appetite for accounts of travel to distant lands and meetings with exotic peoples. Participants in debates on childhood and family in the West mined travel accounts for evidence concerning other cultures’ kinship and family structures, sexuality, gender roles, child-rearing customs, and education that might be put to use to confirm, criticize, or reform Western views and attitudes. But the evidence furnished by travel narratives was inconsistent, and their authors’ reliability was often in question; thus, different data (or interpretations of the available data) were wielded in support of very different positions. Ideological differences colored such travel accounts themselves, as may be seen in the contrasting depictions of the marriage and sexual customs of the American Indians published by the impoverished noble-turned-soldier LouisArmand de Lom d’Arce, baron of Lahontan in 1703, and the Jesuit JosephFrançois Lafitau in 1724. Lafitau’s purpose was to attack the moral relativism that might follow from some travelers’ claims that the savages had no religion. He minimized the differences and found that the Indians’ customs were not so alien after all. Even “nations which have kept all their ferocity and seem to us to live without laws, religion or regulations” viewed marriage as a sacred ceremony and were “jealous of conjugal faith.” While not denying the existence of polygamy in America, Lafitau downplayed its significance, noting that where it was accepted the number of wives was small and there was always a principal one. Incest, far from being common, was nowhere permitted except among the Incas. The Indians revered virginity, as demonstrated by their ancient custom “to pass the first year after the marriage has been contracted without consummating it”; any transgression “would be insulting to the wife and would make her think that the alliance was sought less because of esteem for her than of brutality.” The Indian girls “walk very modestly” and “guard their reputations carefully for fear they will not find a suitable husband.” Sexual licentiousness among the savages was less than “in Europe, where motives of religion are much stronger, [and yet] we see, everywhere, unbridled license and boundless scandal that would horrify the Indians themselves.”10 For Lahontan, however, the Iroquois offered an alternative to Western moral standards. They were

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less passionate than Europeans, and instead of “that Blind Fury which we call Love” they “content themselves with a Tender Friendship.” For this reason, they experienced no jealousy: “They jeer the Europeans upon that head; and brand a man’s distrust of his Wife, for a piece of manifest Folly.” Indeed, for the savages, monogamous, indissoluble marriage was neither possible nor desirable: “They look upon it as a monstrous thing to be tied one to another without any hopes of being able to untie or break the Knot.” Since divorce was accepted and easy, adultery was frowned upon; even though their marriages could be easily dissolved, many savages chose to live with one partner all their lives. Young men and women could marry whomever they wished, without parental interference, and unmarried women were allowed to do what they pleased, without regard for their virginity. Lahontan agreed with Lafitau in one respect: for him, too, the American savages’ moderation “may serve for a just Reprimand to the Europeans.”11 In the Indians’ sexual and marriage practices, which they described and interpreted quite differently, both Lafitau and Lahontan saw an indictment of European immorality. For Lafitau, the savages’ customs confirmed Western norms; for Lahontan, they exposed their limitations. Information drawn from travel literature was used in what were arguably the two most important controversies about the care of young children in the Enlightenment: the campaigns against swaddling and for maternal breast-feeding. John Locke, who condemned swaddling in his influential Some Thoughts Concerning Education (1693), owned numerous travel books, and as a holder of key positions in the government was partly responsible for English colonial policies in the late seventeenth century. Locke’s readers did not miss the connection between his advice and data concerning non-Western cultures. In 1698, his French correspondent Nicolas Toinard told Locke that his argument was supported by the customs of the Canadians, who did not swaddle their infants but placed them in a kind of coffin made of tree bark, covered with moss and furs, which they hung from the walls of their cabins. A tube made of bark drained the child’s urine, and when the moss became dirty, the mothers replaced it right away.12 In 1749, the famous naturalist Georges-Louis Leclerc de Buffon backed his impassioned denunciation of swaddling with examples of other peoples’ “sensible and humane” practices: “Is it not an instance of superior wisdom in those nations, who simply clothe their infants, without tormenting them with swaddling-bands? The Siamese, the Indians, the Japanese, the Negroes, the savages of Canada, of Virginia, of Brazil, and almost all the inhabitants of South America, lay their infants naked into hanging beds of cotton, or put them into cradles lined with fur.” In his discussion of swaddling

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in Emile (1762), Jean-Jacques Rousseau quoted Buffon’s evidence and added that he could “fill twenty pages with citations, if I needed to confirm this by facts.”13 Travel accounts also offered enlightenment authors ammunition in their battle against “mercenary” wet nurses. Travelers everywhere observed that savage mothers breastfed their children. “The Indian women are careful not to give their children to others to be nursed,” wrote Lafitau. “They would think that they were cheating themselves out of the affection due a mother and they are much surprised to see that there are nations in the world where such a practice is accepted and sanctioned.”14 Some authors drew conclusions from other peoples’ reported cruelty toward their children. For Locke, the “Brutality of some savage and barbarous Nations” proved that moral rules—none of which could have “a fairer Pretence” to be “naturally imprinted” than “Parents preserve and cherish your Children”—were not innate. As evidence, Locke mentioned peoples who “eat their own Children,” such as the “Caribes” and a people in Peru who, according to Garcilaso de la Vega, “were wont to fat and eat the Children they got on their female Captives, whom they kept as Concubines for that purpose.”15 The practices by which babies’ bodies and heads were artificially reshaped attracted a great deal of attention. Lafitau recounted that some North American tribes used a special crib to compress their children’s heads. The process caused the children extreme suffering, but “people who wish to be pretty by artifice and to have charms refused them by nature have to pay dearly for it.”16 The German explorer Alexander von Humboldt, who spent some time among the surviving Carib Indians of Venezuela in 1800, observed another instance of artificially induced deformities: “We saw with pain the torments which the Caribbee mothers inflict on their infants, in order not only to enlarge the calf of the leg, but to raise the flesh in alternate stripes from the ankle to the top of the thighs.” Humboldt marveled at the lengths to which “a nation which is said to be so much nearer a state of nature” than his own would go in the name of beauty.17 Whereas for some writers these “savage and barbarous” practices proved the superiority of Western civilization, others offered them as mirrors reflecting the savagery in Western societies, where swaddling bands and corsets reshaped children’s bodies for beauty’s sake as well. Travel literature inspired other European authors to pen ardent criticisms of their own civilization and paeans to the natural, noble way of life of the savage. As already noted, Lahontan discerned in the Iroquois approach to sexuality and marriage an alternative to the Europeans’ Christian morality, virtuous in principle but unattainable in practice. Denis Diderot’s Supplement to Louis Bougainville’s account of his voyage to Tahiti, which circulated in

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manuscript form during his lifetime and was published posthumously in 1796, was a scathing representation of European society, beliefs, and values as they might appear to non-Europeans. In an imagined dialogue between the chaplain who accompanied the explorers and Orou, a local man, Diderot contrasted the Tahitians’ natural morality and rational practices with the Europeans’ hypocrisy, repression, and vice. In Diderot’s Tahiti, marriage is a contract between equals, “an agreement to occupy the same hut and to sleep in the same bed for so long as both partners find the arrangement good.” Whereas the Europeans’ obsession with virginity and monogamy bred unhappiness and deceit and might result in the abandonment or murder of unwanted babies, in Tahiti all children are precious because they increase the family’s wealth and the nation’s strength: “the birth of a child is always a happy event, and its death is an occasion for weeping and sorrow.” Tahitian children are restricted from engaging in sexual activity, but once they reach sexual maturity they are encouraged “to have as many children as possible.” There is no greater honor for a Tahitian woman than being a mother; thus, Orou’s youngest daughter begs the chaplain to break his vow: “Stranger, good stranger, do not reject me! . . . Give me a child whom I can someday lead by the hand as he walks at my side, to be seen by all Tahiti—a little one to nurse at my breast nine months from now.” Orou admitted that passionate love between husband and wife and between parents and children is rare in Tahiti, but in its place the Tahitians have self-interest, which “is more universal, powerful and lasting.” The chaplain reluctantly conceded that “there is some reason in what this savage says. The poor peasant of our European lands wears out his wife in order to spare his horse, lets his child die without help and calls the veterinary to look after his ox.”18 Accounts of exotic savages gave Diderot an occasion to proffer a damning critique of European civilization and Christian morality from the perspective of both nature and reason. Like missionaries, enlightenment philosophers (and enlightened readers) viewed savages as immature human beings or perpetual children. The pervasive analogy between savages and children not only justified paternalistic attitudes (such as the Jesuits’) but also led some philosophers, most notably the Dutch abbé Cornelius de Pauw, to dismiss America and the Americans as an inferior continent and people. For de Pauw, American children, unlike European children, were deprived of perfectibility and educability; they would always remain children. Less controversially, most philosophers agreed that the savages were primitive, closer to the origin of things: “The Tahitian is close to the origin of the world, while the European is close to its old age.”19 In the nineteenth century, the analogy between child and savage gave rise to the theory of

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recapitulation, according to which the development of the child recapitulates the progress of man from savagery to civilization, a theory that found practical applications in the education of children and served as justification for Western rule over other nations and races. But by the end of the eighteenth century, the value judgment attached to the analogies child/savage and adult/civilized had begun to shift, for two reasons: the birth of the United States and the Romantic celebration of childhood.20 Childishness, newness, and immaturity—in the child, the savage, and the American continent—became, in some contexts and for some people, terms of praise rather than blame.

MIGRATION Less than in the nineteenth century, but more than ever before, individuals and families in the long eighteenth century migrated from Europe to other parts of the world in pursuit of new economic opportunities and social mobility or to escape poverty or war. The colonial powers encouraged migration to build their overseas empires. The vast majority of long-distance migrants were single, young, and male. In the Portuguese empire, for instance, boys as young as seven served as cabin boys on ships headed for Brazil or India. In most cases, young men left home willingly, but sometimes poor, orphaned, or abandoned boys were forced to migrate to the colonies, either kidnapped or recruited with lies and deceit. Although a minority, many families migrated together, especially in the second half of the eighteenth century, by which time America (North and South) had become a promising destination. Whereas many individual migrants intended to return home after earning some money, when an entire family moved their intention was generally to settle in a new land. The number of women who migrated on their own remained small until the nineteenth century.21 Quite often migrants became indentured laborers, paying for their passage by signing contracts to serve for a few years. Gottlieb Mittelberger, who returned to Europe in 1754 after spending several years in Philadelphia, publicized the harrowing experiences of German-language families in Pennsylvania so that others would not fall prey to the “thieves of human beings” who profited from people’s desperate circumstances. Packed “as closely as herrings,” migrants suffered “tremendous hunger and want” during the crossing. Smallpox and measles ravaged entire families and struck children in particular. Few women who gave birth at sea or young children survived the voyage: “I myself, alas, saw such a pitiful fate overtake thirty-two children on board our vessel, all of whom were finally thrown into the sea.” Unhappy and impatient, people

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fought with each other: “the children cry out against their parents, husbands against wives and wives against husbands, brothers against their sisters, friends and acquaintances against one another.” When the ships arrived in Philadelphia, the migrants were “sold” to pay for their passage, and families were routinely separated. “It frequently happens that after leaving the vessel, parents and children do not see each other for years on end, or even for the rest of their lives.”22 Family groups who paid for their passage with their own money and settled among people from their original communities had better prospects and a higher chance their hopes would be realized. Emigration affected the communities and families migrants left behind in Europe in different ways depending on economic, social, and personal circumstances. The departure of young men could relieve unemployment or create unwanted labor shortages (often resolved through other forms of migration) and a surplus of young women. Some parents encouraged the temporary emigration of young men anticipating they would return with improved skills, new money, and a higher status to marry in their villages or towns, but many migrants did not survive their sojourn abroad. When married men left alone for the colonies, their absence could cause extreme hardship for their wives and children. Many husbands (and a few wives) who abandoned their spouses in Europe ended up marrying someone else in a different land. But husbands often sent money home to support the rest of their family or saved to bring them over to the colonies. John Harrower, an unemployed Scottish merchant who emigrated to Virginia in 1774 as an indentured servant and worked as a tutor on a plantation, assured his wife by letter that he would bring her and his children “how soon I am able” and in the meantime “every Shillg. I make shall be carefully remitted you.” On the anniversary of his departure, Harrower wrote to his wife that the date would be “ever remembred by me with tears untill it shall please God to grant us all a happy meeting again.” Harrower died in 1777, not having realized the hoped-for reunion.23 Although most Europeans who settled in other parts of the world strove to reproduce their cultures’ family structures and child-rearing practices, the families they formed frequently differed from the ones in which they grew up as a result of their encounters with local peoples and exposure to local customs, together with the difficulties inherent in their situation as migrants (isolation, harsh living conditions, and the need to adapt to a different natural environment and material culture). The scarcity of European women posed a major challenge. Vastly outnumbered, the white women who did emigrate on their own easily found husbands. The most important outcome of the sex imbalance in the migrant population was the prevalence of mixed unions and

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mixed-race children and the concomitant emergence of new ethnic groups. In the Dutch colonies in Southeast Asia controlled by the Dutch East India Company, few male migrants were able to form families as local parents discouraged their daughters from marrying white men (reputed to be heavy drinkers). Dutch men could marry Eurasian (Indo-Portuguese) women, but in so doing they committed to staying abroad since their wives were not allowed to live in the Netherlands. In the second half of the seventeenth century, the French crown tried several strategies to increase the number of settlers in its North American colonies. French recruiters were unable to attract enough families, and most of the young men who arrived in New France as indentured workers subsidized by the government did not stay after their contracts expired, in part because they could not find French wives there. In the absence of white women, French men became involved with native women, and for a short period French authorities tolerated and even promoted the legalization of such unions as a means to increase the population. Toward the end of the century, the crown offered economic incentives to French soldiers who married and settled in New France, with some success. By the early eighteenth century, however, once the number of white women had grown, intermarriage was discouraged. In contrast, the Hudson’s Bay Company required that English fur traders who worked for the company in North America remain single as families were deemed to be distracting and expensive. But company policy did not stop most officers and many employees from forming relationships with native women and having children with them. These unions between company men and Indian women generally responded to native rather than European models. Once their careers ended, these fur traders had to choose between staying in North America with their native families, whom they were not allowed to bring to England, or leaving their families behind. If the mixed families were dissolved (the most likely option), the women usually reentered Indian society with their children, and many of the men eventually married white women back home.24 In Spain’s American colonies, where there was also a great disproportion between white men and white women, unions between Spanish men and nonwhite women, while not encouraged by Spanish authorities, were ubiquitous. These unions, which ran the gamut from rape to long-term concubinage and marriage, generated a large number of mixed-race children and led to the invention of labels to describe these children and a complex racial and social hierarchy (the casta system). After white-white unions, the most acceptable were those between Europeans and Indians (whose children were mestizos). According to the racial ideology held by the Spanish authorities, Indian blood

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was pure, and its stigma disappeared in three generations (a mestizo and a Spaniard gave birth to a castizo; a castizo and a Spaniard, to a Spaniard). Relationships between Europeans and black Africans, which produced mulatto children, were condemned because black blood could not be purified, and Africans were associated with Islam and slavery. Unions between Indians and Africans, while opposed by white masters, were common because many more African men than women were imported into the colonies. Casta painting, a unique artistic genre developed in Mexico in the eighteenth century, portrayed, usually in a series of sixteen paintings, men and women of different races with their child (or children). A brief explanatory label accompanied each painting, such as “from Spaniard and Indian, a Mestizo is born.” The rise of casta painting may be related both to enlightenment attempts to classify the natural world (for instance, Carolus Linnaeus’s binomial taxonomy) and to the new feelings and meanings attached to the (bourgeois) family. By relying on Western (yet also changing) conceptions of the family and of the subordination of women to

FIGURE 10.2: Mexican casta painting attributed to José de Alcíbar, ca. 1750, featuring

the mulatto, child of a Spanish man and a Black woman. Collection of Frederick and Jan Mayer. Photograph by James O. Milmoe.

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FIGURES 10.3–10.4: Casta paintings by José Joaquín Magón, ca. 1770, featuring the

castiza, child of a Spanish man and a mestiza, and the cuarterón, child of a mulatto and a mestiza. Courtesy of the Museo de Antropología, Madrid.

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men and children to parents, casta painting sought to naturalize the racial and social hierarchies of the new global world.25 Confronted with other peoples and cultures in the colonies, white Europeans found that the rigid boundaries they endeavored to establish were constantly transgressed. Thus, the children of wealthy families, both white and mixed, regularly raised by non-white wet nurses and nannies, grew up in (or had considerable exposure to) non-Western cultural environments, customs, and languages. In India, as in other colonial settings, white men became involved with native women, most often (and more acceptably) as mistresses but sometimes as wives (bibis) according to local custom. By the end of the century, British officials, intent on separating the races and enforcing white privilege, sought the help of British women who would be willing to marry British men in India and uphold Western notions of racial hierarchy and domesticity.26

SLAVERY AND THE SLAVE TRADE The Atlantic slave trade, which peaked in this period, destroyed families and ended childhoods. Although historians are not entirely certain of the exact figures, it is believed that close to ten million Africans were transported to the Americas between the sixteenth and nineteenth centuries, more than half of them in the eighteenth century. In the Caribbean colonies and Brazil, thousands of Africans arrived every year as the owners of large plantations found it cheaper and more profitable to import new slaves than to ensure the survival or reproduction of those they already owned. Mortality rates were high and birthrates low, partly owing to the sex imbalance (most imported slaves were men) but also because slave women, insofar as it was possible, may have avoided having children. Some slave women may have killed their infants, whether with the intention to spare them from enslavement or out of utter frustration and exhaustion. In British North America, however, the slave population reproduced naturally, and fewer slaves were imported directly from Africa. A small number of slaves throughout the American continent were domestic servants and artisans, while the rest labored in sugar, coffee, tobacco, and cotton plantations in the Caribbean, Brazil, and the southern colonies of British North America.27 In Africa, children and youth, mothers and fathers were forcibly taken from their homes and robbed of their freedom, culture, and identity. Buyers of slaves preferred male adolescents and young adults or, as a second choice, adolescent girls because they could be put to work right away yet had the potential to work for many years. Still, a high number of enslaved African children— the precise number cannot be determined because the term child is defined in

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different ways in the surviving documents—arrived in the Americas, even though traders made less profit on them since their price was lower. Children were kidnapped during raids or sold by parents or other relatives, especially during times of draught and famines. In some cases, infants were enslaved with their mothers, and their chances of surviving the passage were minimal. Olaudah Equiano recounted that he and his sister were seized by two men and a woman while the adults were in the fields. Some time later, when the siblings were separated, Equiano “cried and grieved continually; and for several days I did not eat any thing but what they forced into my mouth.” Following a succession of masters in Africa, some kinder than others, Equiano came face to face with white men: “I feared I should be put to death, the white people looked and acted, as I thought, in so savage a manner; for I had never seen among my people such instances of brutal cruelty.”28 Even as they endured dreadful living conditions and a humiliating existence, enslaved Africans endeavored to form families and raise children as best they could. The colonial powers’ law codes offered some protection to slave families. Portuguese law, for instance, limited owners’ rights to separate husband and wife but allowed them to remove slave children from their parents. The French Code Noir, issued in 1685, recognized and protected slave marriages as long as the slaves were Catholic (in Catholic regions, the church ensured all slaves were baptized). Slaves required their masters’ consent to be married, but masters could not force a slave to marry against her or his will. The code punished concubinage between free men and slave women with fines or, in the case of masters, deprivation of the slave and any children, who were confiscated but remained slaves unless the free man married the slave “in the church, which will free her and make the children free and legitimate.”29 Although owners discouraged or prohibited slaves from marrying non-slaves or slaves owned by others, in large plantations slaves had more opportunities for forming families. Children’s status followed that of their mothers, and children born of slaves belonging to different owners belonged to the mother’s owner. In Brazilian and North American plantations in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, many slaves lived in some kind of family arrangement (two-parent, single-parent, or extended households), leading historians to conclude that plantation owners had come to view marriage as a means not only to reproduce the slave population but also to control it and keep it minimally contented.30 In 1768, Daniel Dulany sold some slaves, but despite the higher profits he would have gained from selling them separately, he “could not think of separating Husbands and Wifes, and tearing young Children away from their Mothers.”31

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But slave marriages and families were intrinsically unstable. The laws that protected them were difficult to enforce, and slave owners who disobeyed were seldom prosecuted or punished. Even masters with good intentions did not live forever, and their heirs might be forced (or choose) to separate a family. And whereas young children were likely to be sold with their mothers, older children and adolescents were often sold individually. The surviving testimony from slaves and former slaves who underwent separation from spouses and children is poignant. “My heart died away within me,” wrote Charles Ball when he learned he would be sold and separated from his wife and children, who lived in a nearby plantation.32 It was common for slaves who saved money (mainly skilled artisans) to purchase their own freedom and then save more to buy the freedom of other family members. Many children born of slave women and (usually married) masters were manumitted by their fathers. Indeed, a probable motive for slave women who consented to sex with their masters—as far as consent was possible in their situation—was the expectation of better treatment and freedom for their children. Freed children would continue to live with their slave mothers or parents, and their material conditions might not significantly improve, but at least they would not be sold. Many slaves who ran away did so to rejoin family members who lived in other plantations or who were themselves runaways. Slavery consistently undercut the parental role and threatened family ties, but enslaved Africans tenaciously created new families and transmitted to their children a sense of their common identity and culture. To some degree, the experiences of slave children were no different from those of poor and working children in Europe and the colonies: hard work, little or no time for play or leisure, harsh discipline and physical punishment, malnutrition and diseases, and premature death. In the plantations, slave children worked in the fields with their mothers, performing small tasks such as fetching water, scaring birds, and hoeing potatoes. As they grew up, most remained field hands or tended cattle, but a few were trained as skilled artisans or domestic servants. Sometimes wealthy white children were attended by slave children, which, according to slave owners, was an effective way for both to learn lessons in power and submission.33 By the second half of the eighteenth century, as education became a central topic of debate among enlightenment authors and readers, the question of whether slave children ought to be educated and, if so, to what extent was debated as well. One side of the debate proclaimed that educated slaves would resist and disobey their masters, while the other supported the education of slaves as a moral right or, more instrumentally, a means to instill proper values—Christian virtue, obedience, and humility.

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Understandings of slavery in the Age of Enlightenment reflected the changing attitudes to the family and childhood in Europe. All slave owners expected to reap economic benefits from their ownership of slaves, but there was wide variation in how they regarded and related to their slaves. While for many masters slaves were just property, for others they were an integral part of the strict but organic hierarchy that structured all social relations, including those between husbands and wives and parents and children, a hierarchy in which those at the top exercised total control and expected unflinching obedience but also undertook to protect and guide those at the bottom. In the second half of the eighteenth century, in parallel with the rise of a more enlightened concept of childhood and a more sentimental model of the family, a growing number of masters treated their slaves with more affection and recognized them as individuals with feelings and family ties of their own. This softening attitude, which undoubtedly made life less miserable for many slaves, was used by supporters of slavery to cast it in more benign terms. But masters’ paternalism reached

FIGURE 10.5: William Redmore Bigg, A Lady and Her Children Relieving a Cottager

(1781). Philadelphia Museum of Art. Given by Mr. and Mrs. Harald Paumgarten.

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203

only as far as their self-interest, and when sentiment conflicted with economic advantage, it was generally the latter that prevailed. Furthermore, African slaves, like American savages and other non-white, non-Western peoples, were increasingly represented as children or childish, less rational or irrational, and (unlike Western children) immature in perpetuity. Slaves had no legal rights and enjoyed no personal, political, or economic freedoms. The equation of slaves with children authorized and justified the former’s subjection at a time when freedom was being redefined as an essential attribute of humanity, when both political theorists and revolutionary movements (in America and Europe) declared the equality of all men, and when old and new rights were being contested and demanded.34 Slaves’ material humiliation and dehumanization was visible in their scanty clothing or enforced nakedness, which, while not necessarily presenting a practical problem in warm or tropical regions, was symbolically associated with animality, savagery, and, in women, sexual availability. By the late eighteenth century, different ideologies competed for Western minds and hearts: while defenders of slavery found a new ally in the emerging racial science’s claims to have found objective proof of the inferiority of non-white peoples and non-Western cultures, abolitionists deployed the new ideals of childhood and family in their attempt to put an end to the slave trade.

CONCLUSION: UNEQUAL EXCHANGE The global exchange of goods and circulation of people and ideas in the long eighteenth century contributed to the spread of Western conceptions of the family and childhood among non-Western peoples even as Western views and practices were indelibly affected by information on and exposure to non-Western cultures. In an age when the foremost intellectual movement and a number of political revolutions in the West raised the banners of universalism, justice, and equality, however, the exchanges between the West and the rest of the world remained profoundly unequal. William Redmore Bigg’s 1781 painting A Lady and Her Children Relieving a Cottager captures the complexity and diversity of ideals and experiences of childhood and family in this period. It discloses how the new, sentimental, and enlightened concepts failed to match an extremely differentiated social, economic, and cultural reality. The upper-class white mother and her two children, attended by a black servant boy, are pictured assisting a poor white woman and her child. The four children depicted in the painting—the young male heir, who will one day be the master, at the center; his sister, whose age seniority is trumped by her gender inferiority; the poor child, sleeping, a passive

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recipient of charity, looked at but not looking; and the black servant, standing apart from the others and standing in for the rest of the world, ignored by those whose ease and leisure depend on his labor—cannot be subsumed into a single category of childhood with a common nature and universal needs and rights. The two mothers—one barely struggling to survive, helpless, dependent on others’ philanthropy, and the other taking responsibility for the moral and religious education of her children and for an expanding domestic domain— head (temporarily or permanently) two very different kinds of families. Both fathers are physically absent from the scene, but whereas the wealthy father’s absence highlights his symbolically and materially enabling role in the family, the absence of a father in the poor family (whether caused by abandonment, death, or infirmity) explains or adds to the family’s destitution. The black servant boy’s family is not just absent; it has been destroyed.

notes

Introduction 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. 11. 12. 13. 14. 15. 16. 17. 18. 19.

Ariès 1962; Shorter 1976; Stone 1977; Trumbach 1978. Vickery 1991. Cunningham 1995: 61. Davidoff and Hall 1987; Yeo 1999. Mintz 2004: 40. Benzaquén 2004: 35. Cunningham 1995: 70–71. Mintz 2004: 30–31. Reinier 1996. Viazzo 2001: 159, 164–165, 173; Wrigley and Schofield 1981; Mintz and Kellogg 1988: 40; Shy 1976: 249–250. Livi-Bacci 2007: 51. Mintz 2004: 45–47, 94–111. Mintz 2004: 37, 39; Navin 2007: 127–140. Plumb 1975; Sarti 2002; Calvert 1992. De Vries 2008. Fletcher 2008. Outram 2005: 8–9. Cunningham 1995: 64. Botelho 2004; Ottaway 2004.

Chapter 1 1. Sovic 2008. 2. Tague 2001: 85–87.

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3. Ulrich 1980; Wunder 1998; Hufton 1995; Bailey 2003; Ågren and Erickson 2005. 4. Ulrich 1980: 9. 5. Hunt 2000; Bailey 2002. 6. Hindle 2007: 126–127. 7. Boulton 2000; King 2006. 8. Evans 2005; Hurl-Eamon 2005. 9. Calvert 1992; Rand 1997; Retford 2006: 75. 10. Lewis 1987: 708, 707, citing “Conjugal Love,” Massachusetts Magazine, February 1792. 11. Brueghel available online at http://www. artandarchitecture.org.uk/fourpaintings/ rubens/index.html; Duncan 1973; Lovell 1987; Schama 1987; Barker 2005. 12. Schama 1987: 541. 13. Barker 2005. 14. Popiel 2004; Tuttle 2004; Bailey n.d. 15. Lewis 1987: 691. 16. Lewis 1987: 689 citing “Thoughts on Matrimony,” Royal American Magazine, January 1774. 17. Lewis 1987; Desan 2004: 73–74. 18. Desan 2004: 72–73. 19. Reinier 1982: 150, 157–158, citing Rush, A Plan for the Establishment of Public Schools and the Diffusion of Knowledge in Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, 1786. 20. Hunt 1992: 154. 21. Desan 2004: 56; Tuttle 2004. 22. Hunt 1992: 71–73, 163. 23. Hull 1996: 289–290. 24. Heywood 2007; Dekker 2000. 25. Maynes 2002: 199.

Chapter 2 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. 11. 12.

Rabinowitz 2001: 2387. Lynch 2003: 9–11. Anderson 2006. de Vries 1984: 30–31, 207. Hansen 1941: 3. Snell 2006: 499. Lynch 2003: 101. Segalen 1986: 37. Tönnies 1955. Capp 2003: 187. Krausman Ben-Amos 1994: 183–207. Pollock 1983: 212–218; Wall 1978.

NOTES

207

13. Laslett 1974; Anderson 1994: 76. 14. Wrigley and Schofield 1981: 216, 443–450; Demos 1970: 66.

Chapter 3 1. Mintz 2004: 8. 2. Hunt 1996: 80–81. 3. Shorter 1975: 168; Stone 1977: 81. See critique in Cunningham 1995: 4–18 and Simonton 1998: 25. 4. Farge 1993: 53. 5. Schlumbohm 1980: 81. 6. Heywood 2001: 125; Ogilvie, 2003: 115–121, 135 n. 223. 7. Blackstone 1800: 1, 425–427. 8. Defoe 1726: 106. 9. Birmingham Diocesan Record Office (DRO) St. Peter Harborne, Settlement Examinations, 1752–1807, DRO 61 7/12. 10. Ogilvie 2003: 99–100. 11. Hufton 1981: 186; Mintz 2004: 33. 12. Quotes Mintz 2004: 47, 32. 13. Conforti 2005: 69–70, quote 153. 14. Mintz 2004: 43–46. 15. Quoted Iggers 1995: 32. 16. Quoted Mintz 2004: 34. 17. Quoted Blassingame 1977: 516, 564–565. 18. Bamford 1967: 52–53. 19. Schlumbohm 1980: 85. 20. Simonton 2000: 191–193. 21. Defoe 1726: 10. 22. Quoted Rahikainen 2004: 56. 23. Kussmaul 1981: 143–146. 24. Hufton 1981: 197. 25. Sinclair 1982: XII, 293. 26. Simonton 1998: 30–36. 27. Hufton 1981: 197; see Simonton 1991. 28. Rahikainen 2004: 74–75; Ogilvie 1997: 141–142 and 2003: 71. 29. Braun 1990: 54–59, 66, 139. 30. Cunningham 1995: 82. 31. Quoted Mintz 2004: 40. 32. Rahikainen 2004: 23. 33. Hunt 1996: 47, quote 65. 34. Hunt 1996: 80–81. 35. Calvert 1992. 36. Plumb 1975: 71, 73–74. 37. Commission to Inquire Concerning Charities: IV, 353, 355.

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38. Avery 1975: 18. 39. Cunningham 1995: 129; Rahikainen 2004: 29.

Chapter 4 I would like to thank Richard Butled, Hannah Greig, and Peter McNeil for their help and advice. Any remaining errors are mine. 1. Clark 1994: 47–59. 2. The Graham Children, 1742. Oil on canvas, 63.2  71.3 in, National Gallery, London. 3. The hospital was located near present-day Brunswick Square in Bloomsbury. The Grahams lived at 11 Pall Mall, not far from the royal palace where Daniel Graham served as the king’s apothecary. Hogarth was connected to both the Grahams and the Coram’s Fields Hospital; he supported the hospital and produced free of charge Captain Coram’s portrait now at the National Gallery in London. 4. Fletcher 2002: 417–430. 5. Fletcher 2002: 425. 6. Lemire 1991: 67–82. 7. McKendrick, Brewer, and Plumb 1982: 9. 8. People did not just consume more but stated consuming new things, thus creating what are called new patterns of consumption. Subsequent historians have explored the meaning of the new (novelty), fashion, and the sociocultural contexts promoting it such as the birth of fashion publications, print shops, and newspapers. 9. For a critique see Fine and Leopold 1990: 151–179. 10. Harte 1991: 277–296. 11. Holmes 1977: 41–68. 12. Hitchcock, King, and Sharpe 1997; King 2000; Styles 2003: 103–118. 13. Styles 2006: 61–80. 14. Roche 1987: 104–105. 15. Thatcher Ulrich 2001. 16. Berg 1996: 418–419. 17. Cavallo 2000: 38–53. 18. Smart Martin 1993: 153. 19. Simon Schama shows how a key virtue of a wife was to maintain a clean house. If men increasingly emerged as the main providers of household goods, women were in charge of maintaining what was available in working order, securing decorum for the entire family. Schama 1987: 375–426. For the eighteenth century see Vickery 1998: 127–160. 20. Cited in Barker-Benfield 1997: 178. 21. Dibbits 1996: 125–145. 22. Turpin 2004: 58. 23. Pennell 1998: 202, 205. 24. Cox 2000: 143–157. 25. Earle 1994: 297. 26. Priestley and Corfield 1982: 93–123.

NOTES

27. 28. 29. 30. 31. 32. 33. 34. 35. 36. 37. 38. 39. 40. 41. 42. 43. 44. 45. 46. 47. 48. 49. 50. 51. 52. 53. 54. 55. 56. 57. 58. 59. 60. 61.

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Sweeney 1988: 265. Cooper 2002: 297. On furnishing see Rothstein and Levey 2003: 1: 631–658. Fleming 1999: 37–58. Crowley 1999: 751. Thatcher Ulrich 2001. McCracken 1988: 43–44. Roche 2000: 27. Roche considers “work and consumption” as one function. Bedell 2000: 223–245. Shammas 1990; Pardailhé-Galabrun 1991; Overton et al. 2004; Weatherill 1988. Styles 2003: 106. Sarti 2002: 103. See, for instance, the two prints after Dighton reproduced in Crowley 2001: 154–155. Sir James Steuard, An Inquiry into the Principles of Political Oeconomy (London, 1767), 67. Cited in de Vries 1994: 259. de Vries 2008. Cited in Thatcher Ulrich 2001: 219. Weatherill 1990. See also Weatherill’s fully searchable facility http://www. campus. ncl.ac.uk/databases/history/. See for Scottish middle-class households Nenadic 1994: 129. For the analysis of clothing expenditure see Styles 2003: 107–109. For an excellent overview or the recent literature see Styles and Vickery 2006: 1–34. Shammas 1980: 14; Smart Martin 1993: 153. Greig 2006: 102–129. Retford 2006. Shammas 1980: 415. Vickery 2008. I thank Amanda Vickery for allowing me to read this chapter from her forthcoming book. Brown 1986: 578–580. Sarti 2002: 99. Roche 1987: 120, 102. Louis-Sébastian Mercier, Le Tableu de Paris, vol. 10, 4–5, cited in Roche 1987: 114–115. Cited in Koslovsky 2002: 759. Vickery 2006: 12–38. Walsh 2001: 69–70. Colley 2007. Finn 2006: 211. Brewer 2003: 3.

Chapter 5 I gratefully acknowledge the expertise shared by Paul Gehl and John Burton; the insightful comments of Benton Williams, Elizabeth Foyster, and James Marten; the

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research assistance of Eleanor Bossu; and the library resources and knowledge provided by Kathryn DeGraff and Morgen MacIntosh Hodgetts. 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. 11. 12. 13. 14. 15. 16. 17. 18.

Headrick 2000: 60. See also Cohen 1982. Lerer 2008: 84–85. Furet and Ozouf 1982: 149–191. Beckers 2000. The Polite Lady 1752: 12–13. Payne 1976: 94–116. See also Chisick 1981. Ozouf 1988: 262–282. Melton 1988: xxii–xxiii. Quoted in Seybolt 1971: 11. Crowston 2005. Harrington 1999: 318–319. Campbell 2006: 275. La Vopa 1986: 273. Lerer 2008: 85. Goodman 2002: 223. Gelbart 1998: 75. Costa 2002: 72. Smith 2006: 195.

Chapter 6 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. 11. 12. 13. 14. 15. 16. 17. 18. 19. 20. 21. 22.

Hogan 1957: Vol. 1: 56, Vol. 2: 717. Bradstreet 1969: 153–167; Barker 2005: 103–105. Gawthern 1980: 46, 43, 103. Monaghan 2005: 209. Riello 2006: 51. van Gennep 1960. Darnton 1984: 29–30; McClure 1981: 139. Jackson 1996: 30–47; Hoffer and Hull 1981: 95–111. Gelis 1991: 121–133. Wilson 1995: 123–133, 214; Johnstone 1952: 20–29. Mossiker 1985: 67–68. Fitzwilliam Museum Glaisher Bequest C. 2698–1928. Edwards 1970: 27–30. Gawthern 1980: 41. Rousseau 1974: 221. Cunnington and Lucas 1972: 55; Gawthern 1980: 44. Wilson 1995: 221–222; Lord 2002: 190; Nelson 1908. Pocock 1987: 7–8. Nichols and Wray 1935: 41–42. Wilson 1995: 290. Bianchi 1984: 262. Tebbenhoff 1985: 59.

NOTES

23. 24. 25. 26. 27. 28. 29. 30. 31. 32. 33. 34. 35. 36. 37. 38. 39. 40. 41. 42. 43. 44. 45. 46. 47. 48. 49. 50. 51. 52. 53. 54. 55. 56. 57. 58. 59. 60.

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Cremer 1936: 41; Hutton 1817: 82. Browne 1923: 6–7; Chesterfield 1932: 451–452. Colman 1830: 161–263. Fox 2000: 93–94. Gawthern 1980:14, 76. Manuscripts of the Duke of Rutland 1905: 257–259. Cubitt, Mackley, and Wilson 2003: 151. Gawthern 1980: 29, 32, 39. Jung 2001: 107; Elwin 1967: 114, 271–272. Barbagli 1991: 252–255; Phillips 1991: 47–63. Bonfield 1983: 121; Astell 1730: 11. Burney 1988: 16–18. Qvist 1981: 20. Barker 2005: 49–64. Oman 1974: 38; Scarisbrick 1993: 137; Oman 1974: 42. Pinto 1969: 310, 305,149, 170, 22, 350. Fitzwilliam Museum Glaisher Bequest: C. 1596–1928. Pinto 1969: 158–165. Cunnington and Lucas 1972: 82–84, 66–67. Oman 1974: 44; Scarisbrick 1993: 125. Chicken 1829: 15, 16. Lake 1846: 6. Chicken 1829: 26–27. Home 1799: 161–162. Outhwaite 1995: 61; 1991: 35. Burney 1988:16–18. Wheaton 1980: 113–114. Storey 1994: 206–209, 212, 214–216, 228, 230–231, 236–237, 239, 242, 253, 257. Cicero 1967: 42, 18–19, 27–30. Cheyne 1725: 205–207, 226. Titterton 1992: 17–32. Almond 1994: 81; Licht 1980: 54. Gawthern 1980: 29; Nicolich 1992: 45–55. Koslovsky 2000: 105, 141–142, 148; Litten 2002: 161–162, 164; Oman 1974: 73–74. Koslovsky 2000: 105; Minois 1999: 179–277; Walker 1944: 4–13. Richardson 2000: 57–61. Clarke 2001: 1, 50; Orieux 1979: 492–499; Kennedy 1998: 206–210. Spufford 2000: 220, 226, 232, 240.

Chapter 7 1. Goldie 2001: 159. 2. Higgs 2004. 3. Hay 2005: 59–79; Konig 2005: 206–229.

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4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. 11. 12. 13. 14. 15. 16. 17. 18. 19. 20. 21.

NOTES

Mitchison 2000: 1–14. Amussen 1988: 2. Barker and Burrows 2002: 1–10. Honeyman 2007. Walter 2007: 114–120. Snell 2007; Winter 2008. Muldrew 2007. Seccombe 1992. de Vries 2008: 1–26. Hendrickx 1997. Ågren 2005. Hartman 2004: 1. Fuchs 2005: 43. O’Day 2007. Bailey 2003; Foyster 2005. Laslett 1988. Hufton 1974. McHugh 2007: 140–146.

Chapter 8 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. 11. 12. 13. 14. 15. 16. 17. 18. 19. 20. 21. 22.

Kaplan 2004: 493. Shapin: 1. Schama 1989: 29. Passmore 1965; Plumb 1975; Kiefer 1945. The Spectator, February 6, 1711/1712. Taylor 1979; McClure 1981. Bouwsma 1990: 28ff; Illick 1974: 327; Marwick 1974: 278–279. Classen 2005; Greven 1977: 35, 37; Schama 1987: 388. Cassirer 1951: 141. Leonard 2004; Cohen 1989; Lindberg 1996: 113, 126; Taylor 1979; McClure 1981. Gay 1967. Porter 2003: 435. Porter 2003: 386–387; Baridon 1980. Porter 2003: 138. Barker-Benfield, 1992: 138–139. Shammas 1993. For a variety of other opinions on the role of women in the home, see Vickery 1993; Shoemaker 1998; and Kahn 1991. Cadogan cited in Perry 1991: 199; Bloch 1978: 111–112. Cited in Barker-Benfield 1992: 35. Schama 1989:160; Darnton 1984: 232. Rousseau 1953: 42–43; Augustine 2006: 29; Rousseau 1953: 33. Darnton 1984: 243. Schama 1989: 151; LeGates 1976.

NOTES

23. 24. 25. 26.

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Cody 2005: 20–21; Rusnock 2002. Cited in Duncan 1973: 582, 570. Munhall 1967. Gay 1967; Sheehan 2005; Bell 2001.

Chapter 9 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. 11. 12. 13. 14. 15. 16. 17. 18. 19. 20. 21.

Ariès 1962. Brockliss and Jones 1997: 378. Rousseau 1972. Ibid.: 47. Frank 1976: 112. Pinto-Correia 1997. Frank 1976: 112–113. Schlumbohm and Wiesemann 2004; Brockliss and Jones 1997: 734–760. Fildes 1988: 307–349; Lindemann 1981; Sussman 1982. Brockliss and Jones 1997: 613–614. Marland 1993. Lindemann 2008. Diderot 1749; 1751. Shattuck 1980; Lane 1976. Riley 1987. Quoted in Smith 1987: 19. Quoted in Gorn 1989: 300. Hufeland 1799. Brockliss and Jones 1997: 448. Ritzmann 2006: 30–31. Andrew 1991: 85; Woolf 1991: 100; Frank as quoted in Lindemann 1984: 45.

Chapter 10 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. 11. 12. 13.

Outram 2006: 10. Hoerder 2002: 189–190; Tanck de Estrada 2007: 18; Ganson 2003. Ganson 2003: 62–63, 74–75. Ibid.: 38, 55. Ibid.: 40. Greer 2000: 142. Quoted in Davis 1995: 96, 113. Sweet 1995: 27–28, 41. Marshall 2000: 242. Lafitau 1974, Vol. 1: 327, 336–337, 347, 351. Lahontan 1970, Vol. 2: 452, 460, 456, 463. Locke 1989; de Beer 1981: 424–425. Buffon 1791, Vol. 2: 381; Rousseau 1972: 60n.

214

14. 15. 16. 17. 18. 19. 20. 21. 22. 23. 24. 25. 26. 27. 28. 29. 30. 31. 32. 33. 34.

NOTES

Lafitau 1974, Vol. 1: 356. Locke 1975: 73, 71. Lafitau 1974, Vol. 1: 357–358. Leonard and Bryant 1986: 220–221. Diderot 1964: 202, 204, 196, 210–211. Gerbi 1973; Diderot 1964: 186. Gerbi 1973: 281. Sá 2007: 32; Bremner 1970: 5, 10, 12. Mittelberger 1960: 28, 11, 12, 15, 14, 18. Harrower 1963: 54, 56, 72. Hoerder 2002: 183; Moogk 1994; Brown 1980. Katzew 1996. Tobin 1999. Hoerder 2002: 151, 154, 250, 253–254; Campbell 2006. Campbell 2006; Diptee 2007; Kuznesof 2007; Equiano 2007: 58, 65–66. Morgan 1998: 498; in Dubois and Garrigus 2006: 51. Kuznesof 2007: 194; Morgan 1998: 104, 125. Quoted in Morgan 1998: 514. Ibid.: 539. Campbell 2006: 264; Morgan 1998: 197–198, 212. Morgan 1998: 257–296; Brewer 2005: 352–358.

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contributors

Mary Abbott taught history on the Cambridge campus of what is now Anglia Ruskin University for thirty-five years; she has now metamorphosed into a research fellow in history. She is best known as a historian of the family in England between the sixteenth century and the present day. Her most recent book on this theme, Family Affairs (2003), explored the family in the twentieth century. She is currently working on Broken Gamesters: A Narrative Founded on Facts, an investigation of an eighteenth-century family scandal. Joanne Bailey is a senior lecturer in history at Oxford Brookes University. She is a historian of the English family as a set of ideas, practices, and experiences from the seventeenth to nineteenth centuries. She has published on married life and marriage breakdown, married women’s legal position, and wife beating. Her most recent publications explore eighteenth-century parent-child relationships in England and the relationship between fatherhood and masculinity, and she is working on a book entitled Parenting in England c. 1760–1830: Gender, Identity, and Generation. Adriana Silvia Benzaquén is an associate professor in the History Department at Mount Saint Vincent University (Halifax, Canada). She is the author of Encounters with Wild Children: Temptation and Disappointment in the Study of Human Nature (2006) and articles on the science of childhood in the European Enlightenment. Her current project is a study of childhood, family, friendship, and gender in early modern England, focusing on the correspondence between John Locke and his friends Edward and Mary Clarke.

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CONTRIBUTORS

Allison P. Coudert is the Paul and Marie Castelfranco Chair in the Religious Studies Program at the University of California at Davis. Her published books include Leibniz and the Kabbalah (1995); The Impact of the Kabbalah in the Seventeenth Century: The Life and Thought of Francis Mercury van Helmont, 1614–1698 (1999); and Hebraica Veritas? Christian Hebraists, Jews, and the Study of Judaism in Early Modern Europe., ed. with an introduction by Allison P. Coudert and Jeffrey S. Shoulson (2004). Among her recent articles are “Probing Women and Penetrating Witchcraft in Early Modern Europe,” in Hidden Intercourse: Eros and Sexuality in the History of Western Esotericism, ed. Wouter J. Hanegraaff and Jeffrey J. Kripal (2008); “The Sulzbach Jubilee: Old Age in Early Modern Europe,” in Old Age in the Middle Ages and the Renaissance: Interdisciplinary Approaches to a Neglected Topic, ed. Albrecht Classes (2007); and “Ange du foyer ou idole de perversité: ésotérisme au feminine au XIXe siècle,” Politica Hermetica (2006). Elizabeth Foyster is a senior college lecturer and fellow of Clare College, University of Cambridge. She has published widely on themes within the cultural history of children and the family in Britain from the seventeenth to the midnineteenth centuries. She is the author of Manhood in Early Modern England: Honour, Sex, and Marriage (1999); Marital Violence: An English Family History, 1660–1857 (2005); and the editor, with Helen Berry, of The Family in Early Modern England (2007). She is currently also an editor, with Christopher Whatley, of the series “A History of Everyday Life in Scotland,” which will be published by Edinburgh University Press. Steven King is a professor in history at the University of Leicester. He has degrees from the Universities of Kent and Liverpool. Through his training as an historical demographer, his methodological and thematic interests span a wide range. His last book, Women, Welfare, and Local Politics 1880–1920 (2007), investigated female suffrage and welfare activism in the late nineteenth- and early twentieth-century English provinces. He has also published widely on the history of the family, poverty, illegitimacy, courtship, and the use of pauper narratives. Current research encompasses grant-funded projects on sickness and poverty 1750–1850; English sickness narratives 1800–1900; the economics of the Old Poor Law; and (with Professor Pat Hudson) the link between industrialization and sociodemographic and cultural structures. Steven King is about to launch his new project on courtship patterns in Europe 1700s–1850s and continues to work on the relationship between family structures and the structures and processes of welfare in the period 1700–1929.

CONTRIBUTORS

239

Alysa Levene is a senior lecturer in early modern history at Oxford Brookes University. She is the author of Childcare, Health, and Mortality at the London Foundling Hospital, 1741–1800: ‘Left to the Mercy of the World’? (2007). She has also published articles on pauper apprenticeship, illegitimacy, and child welfare in eighteenth-century London. More broadly, her research interests cover the history of infant and child health and welfare in the early modern period and the nineteenth century. Mary Lindemann is professor of history at the University of Miami (Coral Gables, Florida). She is the author of four books: Patriots and Paupers: Hamburg, 1712–1830 (1990); Health and Healing in Early Modern Germany (1996); Medicine and Society in Early Modern Europe (1999); and Liaisons Dangereuses: Sex, Law, and Diplomacy in the Age of Frederick the Great (2006), as well as numerous articles on the history of medicine and early modern Germany. She is currently writing a comparative history of political culture in three early modern cities: Amsterdam, Antwerp, and Hamburg. James Marten is professor and chair of the History Department at Marquette University in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, where he teaches courses on children’s history and the era of the American Civil War. He is author or editor of more than a dozen books, including Children and Youth in a New Nation (2009); Children and Colonial America (2006); Childhood and Child Welfare in the Progressive Era: A Brief History with Documents (2004); Children and War: A Historical Anthology (2002); and The Children’s Civil War (1998). He is the founding secretary-treasurer of the Society for the History of Children and Youth and is currently serving as president of the Society of Civil War Historians. Giorgio Riello is assistant professor in global history and culture at the University of Warwick. He has written on early modern textiles, dress, and fashion in Europe and Asia. He is the author of A Foot in the Past: Consumers, Producers, and Footwear in the Long Eighteenth Century (2006) and has edited a book on shoes and two volumes on cotton textiles. Giorgio is currently writing a monograph entitled Worldwide Wefts: Cotton Textiles in Global History. Deborah Simonton is associate professor of British history at the University of Southern Denmark. Her publications include editing The Routledge History of Women in Modern Europe (2006) and A History of European Women’s Work, 1700 to the Present (1998), co-editing Gender in Scottish History (2006), and articles on eighteenth-century gender, childhood, and work. She is currently

240

CONTRIBUTORS

completing Women in European Culture and Society: Gender, Skill, and Identity from 1700 (2009) and working on a project on gender in the European town, 1600–1920. Valentina K. Tikoff is an associate professor of history at DePaul University in Chicago, where she teaches early modern European and Atlantic world topics. Her current research focuses on interactions among children, families, and charity in eighteenth-century Spain. Recent publications include contributions to the journal Eighteenth-Century Studies and the International Journal of Maritime History and to the book Raising an Empire: Children in Early Modern Iberia and Colonial Latin America, ed. Ondina González and Biana Premo (2007).

index

abandonment, child, 13, 21, 41 – 2, 67, 96, 113, 193 abolitionists, 203 abortion, 179, 186 accidents, child, 175 adultery, 191 advice books, 10, 19 Africa, 177, 199, 200 African Americans, free, 96 Africans, 197, 199 – 203 agriculture, 51 – 2, 53, 58, 61 American. See United States Amsterdam, 45, 46 Anderson, Benedict, 35 annulment, 118 anthropology, 150, 154 apprenticeship, 10, 39, 43, 53, 54 – 64 passim, 100, 102, 116 – 17, 132, 142, 144, 145 Aquinas, Thomas, 173 Ariès, Phillipe, 165 Aristotle, 168, 173 Armstrong, George, 167, 184 art representations of children in, 4, 54, 55, 116 representations of families in, 22 – 7, 74, 75, 80, 84, 120, 159 – 64, 197 – 9, 203 – 4

Ashborne, Derbyshire, 127 Asia, 177 Astruc, Jean, 168, 182 Aubry, Etienne, 24 Augsburg, 102, 103, 148 Augustine, 151, 158 Austria, 36, 45, 63, 95 Avery, Gillian, 67 Bagge, Thomas, 120 Baldini, Filippo, 170 Ball, Charles, 201 Bamford, Samuel, 59 Bangs, Benjamin, 128 baptism, 6, 112, 114 – 15, 170, 200 Bard, Samuel, 167 Baskerville, John, 126 Bath, England, 47 – 8, 126 Beauregard, Nicolas Andry de, 171 Bell, David, 164 Bentham, Jeremy, 41 Berain, Jean, 126 Berg, Maxine, 73 Berlin, 45 bigamy, 134 Bigg, William Redmore, 203 – 4 Birmingham, England, 73 birthdays, 111, 117 births, 112

242

Blackstone, William, 54 Boddington, Benjamin, 64 Boothby, Penelope, 127 Boscawen, Frances, 47 Boston, Massachusetts, 177 Bougainville, Louis, 192 Bouwsma, William, 150 Bradstreet, Anne, 111 braille, 95 – 6 Braille, Charles, 175 Brazil, 199, 200 breast-feeding, 116, 166, 169, 176, 181, 191 – 2 Browne, Edward, 116 Buffon, Georges-Louis Leclerc de, 168, 191 – 2 Burney, Fanny, 123, 156 – 7 Byrd, William, 39 Cadogan, William, 156 Calvert, Karin, 64 – 5 Calvin, John, 6, 150 – 1 Cambridge University, 116 Campbell, Gwyn, 102 Carribean colonies, 199 Case, Philip, 120 Case, Pleasance, 123 Cassirer, Ernst, 151 casta painting, 197 – 9 system, 196 – 9 Cavallo, Sandra, 73 celibacy, 123 Chamberlen, Hugh, 114 Chardin, Jean-Siméon, 17, 67, 106 charity, 41 – 3, 46, 67, 69, 95 – 6, 100 – 2, 131, 144, 145, 153, 169, 183 Chatelet, Emilie du, 105 Chesapeake, 169 Chesterfield, Lord, 116 Cheyne, George, 125, 126 Chicken, Edward, 121 childbed (puerperal) fever, 170 childbirth, 114, 124, 162, 168 – 71, 179, 194

INDEX

child health. See disease; insanity and mental problems; medicine; mortality child labor. See work child psychology, 165, 166, 167, 173 childrearing, 4, 8, 19, 24 – 6, 39, 165 – 6, 184, 185, 187, 190 Christian Brothers, 94 Cicero, 125 citizenship, 6, 29, 152, 153, 162, 169, 175 – 6 “City on a Hill,” 5 Civil Code of 1804, 30 class, 47 – 8, 50, 63 – 5, 50, 70 – 1 education, 99 – 101, 103 Clavius, Christopher, 154 clothing, 9, 64, 65, 69, 70, 71, 73, 79, 81, 116, 121, 142, 148, 171, 174, 180, 181, 186, 188, 203 College of Mining (Mexico City), 99 Collins, Richard, 84 Colman, George, 117 conception, 168 Condorcet, Marquis de, 154 Connecticut, 5, 80 constipation, 167 consumerism, 80 – 1, 83 – 5, 86, 149, 150, 152, 156 children as consumers, 9, 58, 60, 64 – 7 convents, 123, 152, 188 Cooper, Anthony Ashley, third Earl of Shaftesbury, 154 – 5 Copley, John Singleton, 21, 23 Coram, Thomas, 183 Costa, Shelley, 107 Cotton, John, 151 Coudray, Angélique le Boursier du, 107, 108 Coulquhoun, Patrick, 41 Counter-Reformation, the, 151, 152 Cour, Charles Mathon de la, 159 cowpox, 179 Cremer, Jack, 116 criminal responsibility, 132, 142 Crowston, Clare Haru, 100 culture, youth, 39 – 40

INDEX

Cunningham, Hugh, 3 Curzon, Nathaniel, 117 – 18 Cuyp, Jacob Gerritsz, 73 Darnton, Robert, 157 Darwin, Erasmus, 154 dearth, 135 death, 17, 69, 112, 123 – 8, 142, 194; see also mortality Defoe, Daniel, 3, 56, 60 demographics. See population Demos, John, 5 Denmark, 51, 53 Desan, Suzanne, 30 Descartes, René, 153 desertion, 142, 195 Devis, Arthur, 21 diarrhea, 167, 176 Diderot, Denis, 159, 162, 174, 192 – 3 diphtheria, 167, 176 disability, 170 – 1, 174, 183, 192 discipline, 25, 30, 53, 149, 150, 151, 157 – 8, 166, 201 disease, 7, 8, 42, 135, 167, 173, 175 – 9 divorce, 11, 20, 30, 118, 120, 142, 186, 191 domestic violence, 142, 152 dowry, 120, 153 Dulany, Daniel, 200 Dusson, Charles, 127 dysentery, 176 East India Company, 196 ecclesiastical courts, 20 Eden, Frederick Morton, 79 education, 3 – 4, 6, 27, 37, 47, 63 – 4, 65 – 6, 89 – 109, 112, 116, 144, 145, 150, 153, 154, 165, 166, 182, 184, 187, 190, 194 for the disabled, 95, 174 – 5 Native Americans, 93 – 4, 102 of slave children, 201 vocational, 98 – 105 elite families, 16 – 9, 31, 60 – 1, 63 – 4, 67, 70, 96, 103, 105

243

Elliot, John, 86 emancipation, of slaves, 11 emigration, 130, 195 Émile (Rousseau), 3 – 4, 26 – 7, 38 emotion, 15, 16, 21 – 7, 50, 81, 149, 155, 156 empire, 2, 6, 86, 185 – 204 England, 22, 26, 41, 43, 45, 46, 60, 61, 64, 72, 83, 95, 96, 132, 133, 137 – 8, 143, 144 – 5, 179 Enlightenment, conceptions of, 1 – 2, 12, 15 – 6, 38, 89, 129 – 31 epilepsy, 173, 174 Equiano, Olaudah, 200 Ermenonville, 157 Essay Concerning Human Understanding (Locke), 3, 153 Essex (England), 59, 64 ethnicity, 36 – 7, 49 – 50, 185, 196 Eustace, Nicole, 23 family economy, 52 – 3, 136, 140, 146 social construction, 2 – 3, 10, 166 warfare, effects on, 134 – 7 fatherhood, 10, 24, 19 – 30 passim, 37, 63, 67, 149, 181, 204 Faust, Bernhard Christoph, 181, 182 Fielding, Henry, 3 Finland, 51 Flanders, 138 Fletcher, Anthony, 30, 70 forceps, 170 foundlings, 6, 41, 42, 67, 69, 96, 115, 150, 169, 183 Fragonard, Jean-Honore, 26 France, 2, 6, 7, 12, 17, 26, 43, 60, 61, 64, 84, 105, 130, 131, 132, 142, 143, 145, 162, 164, 170, 174 Francke, August Hermann, 95 Frank, Johann Peter, 166, 168, 169, 181, 183 – 4 Frankfurt, 45 Franklin, Benjamin, 41, 55, 127, 178 Franklin, Francis, 127

244

Frederick the Great, Prussia, 44 Freud, Sigmund, 173 friendship, 39 – 40 Frost, Abigail, 117 funerals, 112, 125 – 8 furniture, 73 – 82 Gainsborough, Thomas, 22 – 3 Galen, of Pergamum, 168 Galicia, 36 Gawthern, Abigail, 111 – 12, 114, 117, 125 – 6 Gay, Peter, 153, 164 Gelbart, Nina Rattner, 107 Gemeinschaft, 37 gender, 3, 18, 39, 49 – 50, 53, 80, 142, 155 – 7, 190 education, 92–3, 94–5, 98–99, 100, 105 separate spheres, 4, 10 – 11, 18 – 20, 24 – 5, 29 – 31, 59, 156 work, 61, 64, 186 Genlis, Madame de, 66 Germans, 47, 51, 57 Germany, 7, 17, 23, 27, 29, 42, 45, 60, 61, 64, 154 Gesellschaft, 37 ghetto, Jewish, 45, 46 Glasgow University, 155 Glisson, Francis, 171 godparenting, 115 Goethe, Johann Wolfgang von, 159 Goffman, Erving, 79 Gouge, William, 42 Goya, Francisco, 125 grandchildren, 143 grandparents, 128, 142, 143, 156, 164 Graunt, John, 41 Great Britain, 2, 7, 130, 138, 139 – 40, 141, 142, 143; urban growth, 35 Greig, Hannah, 82 Greuze, Jean-Baptiste, 24, 67, 116, 120, 159, 162 – 3 Greven, Philip, 148, 151 Guaraní region (Paraguay, Brazil, and Argentina), 186 – 7 guilds, craft, 100 – 2

INDEX

Habermas, Jurgen, 104 Habsburg Empire, 132, 142 Hals, Frans, 21 Hamburg, 183 handwriting, 91 – 2 Hardwick’s Marriage Act (1753), 140 Harrower, John, 195 Haüy, Valentin, 174 Hendrickx, Francois, 138 Hesse, 134, 182 Hesse, Carla, 107 Heywood, Colin, 25, 30 highland clearances, 145 Hitchcock, Tim, 72 Hogarth, William, 54, 56, 67, 70, 72, 79, 82, 160 – 2 holidays, 40 hospitals, 6, 42, 67, 69, 96, 169, 183 – 4 Hudson’s Bay Company, 196 Hufton, Olwen, 61, 62 humanists, 104 Humboldt, Alexander von, 192 Hume, David, 38, 155 Hunt, Lynn, 29 Hunt, Margaret, 64 Hunter, John, 120, 122 Hunter, William, 113, 126, 170 Hutcheson, Francis, 155 Hutton, William, 116 illegitimacy, 41 – 2, 132, 135, 140 – 2, 146 immigration. See migration impotence, 173, 174 incest, 190 India, 177, 194, 199 industrialization, 10, 18, 35 – 6, 47, 52, 53, 60, 129, 137 – 8, 139 infanticide, 113, 186, 193, 199 influenza, 176 inheritance, 2, 30, 49, 51, 62 – 3, 73, 117 – 18, 128, 133, 136, 140 inoculation, smallpox, 177 – 9 insanity and mental problems, 126, 167, 174, 175, 179

INDEX

245

Kant, Immanuel, 174 kidnapping, 57, 200 King, Gregory, 71 – 2 King, Steven, 72 Kingston, Duke of, 126 kinship, 17, 33 – 4, 38, 42, 43 Klöden, Karl Friedrich, 59 König, Heinrich, 52 Kussmaul, Anna, 60

Linnaeus, Carolus, 197 literacy, 3, 6, 9, 90, 91 – 2, 95, 107, 129 literature, children’s, 9, 64, 66 – 7, 90, 97 – 8 Little Pretty Pocket-Book, 65 Liverpool, England, 174 Locke, John, 4, 5, 6, 10, 25, 26, 30, 37 – 8, 65, 98, 153, 154, 166, 173, 191, 192 Lom d’Arce, Louis-Armand de, baron of Lahontan, 189, 190 – 1, 192 London, 45, 46, 184 London Foundling Hospital, 41, 115, 183 Louis XIV, France, 44, 126 Louis XVI, France, 121 Louisiana, 176 Luther, Martin, 150 – 1, 152 Lynch, Kathryn, 36 Lyons, 56

labor. See work La Condamine, Charles-Marie, 178 Lafitau, Joseph-François, 190, 191, 192 Lake, Edward, 122 Lancashire, 81 Laslett, Peter, 43, 143 Latham Family, 81 Latin, 98, 116, 117 Latin America, 96, 186 – 8, 191, 192 La Vopa, Anthony J., 103 Leipzig, 83 Leopold I, 44 l’Epée, Charles de, 175 Lerer, Seth, 91, 98 Leroy, Alphonse, 4 Lessing, Gotthold Ephraim, 154 Levin, Rahel, 45 Leyden, 67 life cycle, 12, 13, 43, 52, 54, 68, 111 – 28, 147 childhood, 58 – 9, 116 – 18 infancy, 58, 111, 113 – 15 young adulthood, 62 – 3 youth, 60 – 2, 116 – 18 l’Incarnation, Marie de, 187 – 8

McHugh, Tim, 145 McKendrick, Neil, 70 Madrid, 107 Maitland, Charles, 178 malaria, 176 Malebranche, Nicolas, 168 Malthus, Thomas, 41 Maria Theresa, 44 Mark Overton, 78 marriage, 1, 11, 15, 16 – 31 passim, 41, 45, 46, 67 70, 112, 118 – 23, 140 – 2, 166, 185 – 8 passim, 190 – 3 passim, 195 – 6, 199 among slaves, 8, 200 – 1 in art, 21 – 4 clandestine, 122 economy within, 19 – 20, 63 legal factors, 20, 122, 129, 140 Marseille, France, 176 Marshall, John, 9 Martin, Ann Smart, 81 Maryland, 8, 31, 36, 79 masculinity, 19, 22, 25 – 6 Mason, John Hope, 164 Massachusetts, 5, 60

inventories, household, 78 – 9, 81 Ireland, 36, 134 Italy, 42, 60, 61, 143 Itard, Jean-Marc, 175 Jansen, Cornelius, Bishop of Ypres, 151 Jenner, Edward, 179 Johnson, Samuel, 34 Joseph II, Austria, 44 Jung, Carl, 118

246

masturbation, 167, 173 – 4 material culture, 9, 16 – 21, 69 – 73 household, 73 – 82 in towns and cities, 82 – 6 mathematics, 90, 93, 99, 105 Mather, Cotton, 39, 151, 178 Maupertuis, Pierre-Louis, 168 Mauriceau, Francois, 114 Maza, Sara, 26 measles, 167, 194 medical care, 179 – 84; see also hospitals; nursing medicine, 7, 144, 145, 153, 165 – 84 Mercier, Sébastian, 82 Merrick, Jeffrey, 29 mestizo children, 196 – 9 Mexico, 197 middle class, 10, 17, 63 – 4, 67, 104 – 9, 148 midwives, 4, 101, 107, 114, 169, 170 migration, 7 – 8, 9, 35 – 7, 44 – 7, 51, 61, 130, 132, 135, 137, 138, 139, 143, 144, 145, 194 – 9 military academies, 99 service, 63, 134 – 7 Milton, John, 154 missionaries, 94, 102, 185 – 8 Mississippi, 176 Mittelberger, Gottlieb, 194 Montague, Lady Mary Wortley, 177 – 8 Montaux, Nicolas Chambon de, 183 Moravians, 138 More, Hannah, 5 Morland, George, 116 mortality, 7, 8 – 9, 43, 134, 145, 166, 168 – 9, 175, 179, 199; see also death Moscow School of Mathematics and Navigation, 99 motherhood, 4, 6, 10, 19, 24 – 5, 27, 28 – 31, 43, 50, 149, 155 – 6, 161 – 4, 168 – 71, 193, 204 educational role, 90, 106 – 9, 204 unmarried, 43, 169, 183 – 4 mulatto children, 197 – 9

INDEX

Mulsow, Martin, 154 Munhall, Edgar, 162 Murphy, Arthur, 123 naming practices, 115 nationalism, 6, 94 – 6 Native Americans, 9, 49 – 50, 51, 56, 61, 96, 102, 188, 190, 192, 193 native peoples, 186 – 92, 196 natural rights, 6, 11, 130 neighbors, 38 – 9 Nelson, Baltic, 115 Nelson, Catherine, 115 Nelson, Edmund, 115 Nelson, Horatio, 115 Netherlands, 45, 46, 131, 132, 137 Newbery, John, 9, 66, 98 Newcastle, England, 121 New England, 5, 11, 19, 43, 45, 51, 60, 64, 94, 169 New England Primer, 91 New France, 188, 196 New Hampshire, 60 New Jersey, 11 New Netherlands, 36, 115 newspapers, 131, 146, 171, 183 Newton, Isaac, 105 New York, 11 North America, 22, 26, 51, 61, 79, 84, 96, 136, 137, 138, 139, 143, 145, 146, 169, 187 – 8, 196, 199, 200 Norway, 23, 51, 61 Nouts, Michael, 21, 22 nursing, 144, 156, 172, 181 obstetrics, 107, 108, 167, 169 – 70 old age, 128, 132, 134, 143, 144, 176 orphans and orphanages, 6, 41 – 2, 43, 67, 96, 102, 103, 128, 150, 152, 183 Overton, Mark, 78 Oxford University, 117 Ozouf, Mona, 95 Pardailhé-Galabrun, Annik, 78 Paris, 72, 82 – 3, 100, 183

INDEX

247

Pascal, Jacqueline, 151 patriarchy, 6, 10, 16, 24, 25 – 6, 28, 30, 36, 63, 130, 156, 162, 185, 186 Pattenson, Martha, 117 Pauw, Cornelius de, 193 Pennsylvania, 11, 36, 45, 57, 194 Pepys, Samuel, 42, 128 Perrault, Charles, 98 Perrier, Sylvia, 17 Perry, Ruth, 162 Peru, 192 Peter the Great, 99 Petit, Antoine, 167 Philadelphia, 29, 60, 194 – 5 Physiocrats, French, 100 Pierron, Jean, 187 Pilgrims, 9 plague, 176 play, 3 – 4, 8, 10, 24, 27, 39 – 40, 59, 82, 97, 98, 107, 150 Plumb, J. H., 9, 65 Plymouth Colony, 5, 9, 45 politics, 6 Poor Laws, 56, 101, 131, 138, 144 – 6, 175, 183 Pope, Alexander, 151, 154 popular music, 16, 21 population, 6, 7 – 8, 17, 35, 43, 130, 138, 162, 179 Porte, Abbé de la, 163 Port Royal, 151 Portugal, 42, 51, 194 poverty, 20 – 1, 41 – 3, 56, 69, 79, 100 – 1, 131, 138, 143 – 6, 153, 204 Prague, 45 printing, 90, 131 professions, 64, 98 – 9 pronatalism, 29, 162, 166, 169, 184, 196 prostitution, 128, 152 Prussia, 20, 30, 95, 132, 136 – 7, 141, 143

Recapitulation, theory of, 194 Reformation, the, 147, 151 religion, 5, 34 – 5, 44 – 7, 147 – 64; see also missionaries Catholic, 5, 41, 148, 149, 151, 152, 153, 157, 163, 164, 185 – 8, 200 education, 91, 94 – 5, 96, 101 – 2, 147 Evangelical, 5, 151 Huguenot, 36, 126, 138 Islam, 197 Jewish, 5, 44 – 7, 125 Protestant, 5, 20, 47, 148, 149, 151, 152, 153, 157, 162, 163, 164 Puritan, 5 – 7, 9, 37, 39 – 40, 45, 46, 51, 94 Quaker, 37, 45 Ursuline, 94, 187 – 8 Republicanism, 11 – 2 residential patterns, 18 Revolution American, 6, 11, 12, 28 – 31, 95, 115 French, 6, 11, 12, 28 – 31, 95, 115, 127 – 8, 183 Reynolds, Joshua, 25, 67 Rhode Island, 5 Richardson, Samuel, 3, 157 rickets, 171, 181, 182 ringworm, 171, 175 rites of passage, 39, 70, 113, 128 ritual, 5, 34, 44, 45, 82, 112, 147 Robinson Crusoe, 98 Romanticism, 5, 27, 48, 194 Rousseau, Jean-Jacques, 3 – 4, 5, 10, 26 – 7, 37 – 8, 106, 114, 149, 152, 153, 157 – 9, 166, 169, 173, 181, 192 Rowlandson, Thomas, 124 Royal Society, 178, 179 Rubens, Peter Paul, 24 Russia, 51, 63 Rutland, fifth Duke of, 117

Quebec, 188

Sabean, David, 17 Safley, Thomas Max, 102 Saint, Francis Borja, 125 Saint-Domingue, 11

Ramazinni, Berndardino, 125 Raulin, Joseph, 170

248

St. Petersburg, 63 Salem, witch trials, 178 Saxony, 53 Scandinavia, 20, 60, 121, 132, 138, 145, 179 Schama, Simon, 149, 151, 155, 157 science, 4, 104, 105, 165, 203 Scientific Revolution, 148 Scotland, 20, 61, 131, 145 – 6 Scots, 51, 155 scrofula, 179 Secker, Thomas, 117 Second Great Awakening, 6 secularization, 5, 46, 164 sensibility, 149, 154 – 64 servants, 17, 18, 30, 34, 50, 56, 57, 58, 61, 63, 70, 71, 72, 74, 76, 81, 83, 86, 195, 199, 201, 203 – 4 Seville, 103 Sewell, Samuel, 39 sexuality, 28 – 9, 41, 168, 173 – 4, 185, 186 – 7, 190 – 1, 192, 193 Shakespeare, William, 111 Shammas, Carole, 78, 81, 82, 156 Shapin, Steven, 148 Sheffield, England, 73 Shorter, Edward, 50 siblings, 17, 34, 39, 50, 58, 62 – 3, 64, 81, 86, 128, 142, 143 slave codes, 8 slavery, 7 – 8, 11 – 2, 57, 59, 60, 94, 97, 169, 171, 179, 197, 199 – 203 Sloane, Hans, 178 smallpox, 7, 127, 167, 176 – 9, 194 Smellie, William, 114 Smith, Adam, 41, 81, 100, 155 Smith, Hugh, 169 Snell, Keith, 35 social construction, childhood as, 1 – 2, 3, 4 socialization, 34 – 5, 43, 91, 103 Society of Jesus, 98 Some Thoughts Concerning Education (Locke), 3, 26, 191 South Carolina, 36

INDEX

Spain, 42, 60, 64, 96, 143, 176, 196 – 9 Spectator, The, 150 Staffordshire (England), 59, 64 stepparents, 128, 142 Steuart, Sir James, 79 Stevenson, Robert Louis, 57 Stone, Lawrence, 50, 81 Storch, Johann, 167 Styles, John, 72 suicide, 126, 154, 159 Surrey, 175 Sweden, 23, 51, 53, 60, 62, 130, 131, 137, 145, 179 Sweet, David, 188 Sweetapple, Reverend Mr., 122 – 3 Switzerland, 121, 131, 134, 138, 140, 141, 145 syphilis, 169, 178 Tabula Rasa, 4, 173 Tadmor, Naomi, 17 Tahiti, 192 – 3 Tasman, Abel, 85 taxation, 132, 138, 139, 144, 146 teething, 167, 179 Theory of the Leisured Class, 70 Thrale, Hester, 47 Tissot, Samuel-Auguste, 173 – 4, 181 Toinard, Nicolas, 191 Tönnies, Ferdinand, 37 tuberculosis, 176 Turgot, Anne Robert Jacques, 154 Turin, 67 Tuttle, Lesley, 26 typhus, 176 Ulrich, Laurel Thatcher, 19, 73 Underwood, Michael, 167 United States, 6, 8, 11 – 2, 20, 28 – 31, 37, 63, 194 urbanization, 35 – 6, 37 – 44, 47, 52, 82 – 6, 130 vaccination, 179 Vandermonde, Charles Augustin, 154

INDEX

van Gennep, Arnold, 113 Veblen, Throstein, 70 Vega, Garcilaso de la, 192 Venezuela, 192 Vermont, 20 Vickery, Amanda, 82 Victor, “the wild boy of Aveyron,” 174, 175 Virginia, 8, 27, 31, 63, 191, 195 Voltaire, François-Marie, 128, 174, 178 von Rosenstein, Niels Rosén, 167, 170 Vries, Jan de, 79 Wales, 121, 132, 143, 144 – 5 Walker, Smart Edward, 59 Wall, Richard, 43 Walsh, Clare, 84 War of the Spanish Succession, 7 Watts, Isaac, 66 Weatherill, Lorna, 78 – 9 weddings, 121 – 3 Weishaupt, Adam, 154 Wesley, John, 151, 162

249

wet-nursing, 42, 50, 114, 116, 123, 169, 199 Wheatley, Phillis, 97 widower, 123 widowhood, 57, 73 widows, 142 William of Orange, 122 Wilmington, Delaware, 169 Wolff, Caspar Friedrich, 154, 168 Wollstonecraft, Mary, 11, 107 Wolverhampton (England), 66 women. See gender work, 8, 10, 49 – 53, 80 – 1, 102, 125 child labor, 58 – 63, 116, 134, 139, 142 – 3, 201 domestic service, 54 – 6, 128, 150 training for, 98 – 102, 150 World Health Organization, 176 Württemberg, 62 Wytt, Robert, 167 Yorkshire, 138 Zurich, 58, 62