Kelly Alisa Ryan, Ph.D. Candidate
Institution: University of Maryland, College Park
E-mail: no longer current January 2009

Title of Diss: Regulating Passion: Sexuality and Citizenship in the Early Republic, 1760-1820.
My dissertation explores how sexuality assisted in the creation and maintenance of power structures in revolutionary and early national Massachusetts. The first part of my dissertation shows how the constructions of British excessive effeminancy and debauchery helped differentiate "American" from "British." I also show how legal and discursive regulations of sexuality were useful in maintaining the gendered and racial hierarchy in British Colonial America. The second part of my dissertation examines how the new Republic used heteronormative marriage, courtship, law, and discourses on sexuality to construct citizens and delegtimate others. Finally, I explain how Americans confronted sexual vice because of their fears that excessive sexuality would undermine the needs of a virtuous republic.

search terms: Revolutionary US or Early National Sex. Native American/African American Sex

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