Palgrave Studies in Literature, Science and Medicine

Health and Sickness in the Early American Novel

Social Affection and Eighteenth-Century Medicine

Authors: Tuthill, Maureen

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  • Represents the first monograph to deal with medical issues in the early American novel
  • Uses depictions of health, illness, and healing in literature to offer an in-depth look at social behavior and philosophies of Post-revolutionary American culture
  • Holds interdisciplinary appeal in the fields of literature, history and politics
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eBook 74,96 €
price for Germany (gross)
  • ISBN 978-1-137-59715-1
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Hardcover 96,29 €
price for Germany (gross)
  • ISBN 978-1-137-59714-4
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  • Usually dispatched within 3 to 5 business days.
Softcover 96,29 €
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  • ISBN 978-1-349-95567-1
  • Free shipping for individuals worldwide
  • Usually dispatched within 3 to 5 business days.
About this book

This book is a study of depictions of health and sickness in the early American novel, 1787-1808. These texts reveal a troubling tension between the impulse toward social affection that built cohesion in the nation and the pursuit of self-interest that was considered central to the emerging liberalism of the new Republic. Good health is depicted as an extremely positive social value, almost an a priori condition of membership in the community. Characters who have the “glow of health” tend to enjoy wealth and prestige; those who become sick are burdened by poverty and debt or have made bad decisions that have jeopardized their status. Bodies that waste away, faint, or literally disappear off of the pages of America’s first fiction are resisting the conditions that ail them; as they plead for their right to exist, they draw attention to the injustice, apathy, and greed that afflict them.

About the authors

Maureen Tuthill is Associate Professor of English and A.P. Green Endowed Fellow in English at Westminster College, Fulton, Missouri, USA. Her articles and reviews have appeared in Legacy: A Journal of American Women Writers, Literature of the Early American Republic, and Early American Literature.

Reviews

“Maureen Tuthill’s fascinating book demonstrates how American assumptions about healthcare have their roots in the eighteenth century and, in particular, the two decades following the USA’s founding. … Health and Sickness in the Early American Novel is deeply researched, tightly structured and consistently well argued. … The book makes thought-provoking and sobering reading … .” (Rowland Hughes, The British Society for Literature and Science, bsls.ac.uk, November, 2017)


“Tuthill offers a sorely-needed analysis of Federalist literature's depictions of medicine. She adroitly argues that scenes of care give us access to an important tension within early national identity. On the one hand, such scenes foreground a need to minister to others in times of illness in order to build bonds of social affectation and, on the other hand, they emphasize citizens' responsibility to protect their health as a form of self-interest. Health and Sickness in the Early American Novel provides valuable insights into why medicine matters for understanding what it meant to be an early American.” (Kelly Bezio, English Department, Texas A&M University, USA)

Table of contents (7 chapters)

Table of contents (7 chapters)
  • Introduction: “The Glow of Health”: Medicine Meets the Novel in Early America

    Tuthill, Maureen

    Pages 1-16

  • A “Very Unfeeling World”: The Failure of Social Healing in Rowson’s America

    Tuthill, Maureen

    Pages 17-46

  • “Your Health and My Happiness”: Sickness and Social Control in The Coquette and Female Quixotism

    Tuthill, Maureen

    Pages 47-80

  • “The Best Means of Retaining Health”: Self-Determined Health and Social Discipline in Early America

    Tuthill, Maureen

    Pages 81-114

  • “The Means of Subsistence”: Health, Wealth, and Social Affection in a Yellow Fever World

    Tuthill, Maureen

    Pages 115-146

Buy this book

eBook 74,96 €
price for Germany (gross)
  • ISBN 978-1-137-59715-1
  • Digitally watermarked, DRM-free
  • Included format: PDF, EPUB
  • ebooks can be used on all reading devices
  • Immediate eBook download after purchase
Hardcover 96,29 €
price for Germany (gross)
  • ISBN 978-1-137-59714-4
  • Free shipping for individuals worldwide
  • Usually dispatched within 3 to 5 business days.
Softcover 96,29 €
price for Germany (gross)
  • ISBN 978-1-349-95567-1
  • Free shipping for individuals worldwide
  • Usually dispatched within 3 to 5 business days.
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Bibliographic Information

Bibliographic Information
Book Title
Health and Sickness in the Early American Novel
Book Subtitle
Social Affection and Eighteenth-Century Medicine
Authors
Series Title
Palgrave Studies in Literature, Science and Medicine
Copyright
2016
Publisher
Palgrave Macmillan UK
Copyright Holder
The Editor(s) (if applicable) and The Author(s)
eBook ISBN
978-1-137-59715-1
DOI
10.1057/978-1-137-59715-1
Hardcover ISBN
978-1-137-59714-4
Softcover ISBN
978-1-349-95567-1
Edition Number
1
Number of Pages
XIV, 253
Topics