"Not man enough": Gender and Democratic Campaign Tactics in the Election of 1856
Haumesser, Lauren, History - Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, University of Virginia
Varon, Elizabeth, Department of History, University of Virginia
This paper explores how Democratic Party newspapers and activists used ideas about gender---especially about an aggressive masculinity---to unite the northern and southern wings of the party in the election of 1856. Democrats linked their party with conservative gender roles and the protection of slavery, and they accused Republicans of supporting woman's rights and abolitionism. In 1856, northern and southern Democrats united against these radical "isms." But by using gender to delegitimate the Republican Party, Democrats opened a Pandora's box: southern Democrats would soon use gender to decry all northerners as radicals who could not be reasoned with.
MA (Master of Arts)
election of 1856, union, James Buchanan, masculinity, Democratic Party, John Fremont, woman's rights movement, gender, disunion, abolitionism
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