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- DescriptionRemaking the Male Body looks at interwar physical culture as a set of popular practices and as a field of ideas. It takes as its central subject the imagined failure of French manhood that was mapped out in this realm by physical culturist 'experts', often physicians. Their diagsis of intertwined crises in masculine virility and national vitality was surprisingly widely shared across popular and political culture. Theirs was a hygienist and sometimes overtly eugenicist conception of physical exercise and national strength that suggests the persistence of fin-de-siecle pre-occupations with biological degeneration and regeneration well beyond the First World War. Joan Tumblety traces these patterns of thinking about the male body across a seemingly disparate set of voices, all of whom argued that the physical training of men offered a salve to France's real and imagined woes. In interrogating a range of sources, from get-fit manuals and the popular press, to the mobilising campaigns of popular politics on left and right and official debates about physical education, Tumblety illustrates how the realm of male physical culture was presented as an instrument of social hygiene as well as an instrument of political struggle. In highlighting the purchase of these concerns in the interwar years, the book ultimately sheds light on the roots of Vichy's project for masculine renewal after the military defeat of 1940.
- Author BiographyJoan Tumblety teaches History at the University of Southampton. Her recent research has focused on the cultural and gender history of early to mid-twentieth century France, with a special interest in masculinity. Her current project examines the interface between scientific discourse and popular culture. She recently served as co-editor of the interdisciplinary journal Modern & Contemporary France (2006-2011).
- Author(s)Joan Tumblety
- PublisherOxford University Press
- Date of Publication18/10/2012
- SubjectSociology & Anthropology: Professional
- Place of PublicationOxford
- Country of PublicationUnited Kingdom
- ImprintOxford University Press
- Content Note24 black and white images
- Weight566 g
- Width164 mm
- Height240 mm
- Spine20 mm
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