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Play cultures, social worlds and youth in familial settings, 1700-1904

Play cultures, social worlds and youth in familial settings, 1700-1904

Martin, Mary ORCID: 0000-0002-3568-6423 (2021) Play cultures, social worlds and youth in familial settings, 1700-1904. In: Marten, James, (ed.) Oxford Handbook of the History of Youth Culture. Oxford University Press, Oxford. ISBN 978-0190920753 (In Press) (doi:

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Debates on youth culture have frequently focused on rituals of misrule, gangs, the music industry, and other activities and institutions external to the home and family. Yet from 1700 to 1900, many young people developed play cultures within domestic and familial settings. This chapter focuses on outdoor play, imaginative play, and young people's writing and dramatic performances from 1700-1900. While the activities of girls and young women have received far less attention than those of males, recent research reflects a rich social world of activities generated by young people on the threshold of adulthood in all social classes, which was shared with siblings and friends, male as well as female. As mainly self-generated and distinct from adult worlds, these activities are as worthy of the definition "youth culture" as twentieth-century developments which were strongly influenced by adult celebrities, the mass media and commercial interests. Although this essay argues that, for all the idealistic visions of play as a youth-generated activity, the intervention of adults was necessary for such play cultures to develop, it casts new light on the definition of "youth culture," and on the transition to adulthood.

Item Type: Book Section
Additional Information: This follows the house style of the Oxford handbooks series, with limited footnotes, and US style spelling for this edition. The volume was first published online on April 2021, but remains open to new contributions. The author's contribution was only recently accepted on April 18 2022. Please update metadata on online inclusion in volume.
Uncontrolled Keywords: youth; play; siblings; outdoors; theatricals; juvenile magazines
Subjects: H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
L Education > L Education (General)
Faculty / School / Research Centre / Research Group: Faculty of Education, Health & Human Sciences
Faculty of Education, Health & Human Sciences > School of Education (EDU)
Faculty of Liberal Arts & Sciences
Faculty of Liberal Arts & Sciences > History Research Group (HRG)
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Last Modified: 25 May 2022 15:01

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