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In Public Houses: Drink and the Revolution of Authority in Colonial Massachusetts

Conroy, David W.

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ISBN 10: 0807822078 / ISBN 13: 9780807822074
Published by Univ of North Carolina Pr, Chapel Hill, North Carolina, U.S.A., 1995
Hardcover
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Near Fine in NEAR FINE jacket 8vo-over 7¾"-9¾" tall. Brown cloth, sharp corners, 351 pgs., indexed, binding very good, interior bright.; 351 pages. Very Good in Very Good dust jacket. Bookseller Inventory # E116

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Bibliographic Details

Title: In Public Houses: Drink and the Revolution ...

Publisher: Univ of North Carolina Pr, Chapel Hill, North Carolina, U.S.A.

Publication Date: 1995

Binding: Hardcover

Edition: First Edition.

About this title

Synopsis:

In this study of the role of taverns in the development of Massachusetts society, David Conroy brings into focus a vital and controversial but little-understood facet of public life during the colonial era. Concentrating on the Boston area, he reveals a popular culture at odds with Puritan social ideals, one that contributed to the transformation of Massachusetts into a republican society. Public houses were an integral part of colonial community life and hosted a variety of official functions, including meetings of the courts. They also filled a special economic niche for women and the poor, many of whom turned to tavern-keeping to earn a living. But taverns were also the subject of much critical commentary by the clergy and increasingly restrictive regulations. Conroy argues that these regulations were not only aimed at curbing the spiritual corruption associated with public houses but also at restricting the popular culture that had begun to undermine the colony's social and political hierarchy. Specifically, Conroy illuminates the role played by public houses as a forum for the development of a vocal republican citizenry, and he highlights the connections between the vibrant oral culture of taverns and the expanding print culture of newspapers and political pamphlets in the eighteenth century.

Book Description:

" In Public Houses is an extraordinary work of history that gracefully traces the origins, growth, and functions of these centers of collective drink during the first two centuries of American history. . . . Challeng[es] conventional wisdom on the rigid distinction between oral and print culture, the anglicization of Massachusetts, and the influence of the Puritan ethic during the Revolution."-- Choice

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