At the Intersection: Destabilizing White Creole Masculinity at the 18th-Century Little Bay Plantation, Montserrat, West Indies
Author(s): Jessica Striebel MacLean
Guided by contemporary humoral theory, 18th-century Europeans believed climate and bodily humors to be mutually influential and correlated in their effect on human temperament, appearance, and behavior. Resettlement to a new climate was understood to create humoral imbalances fundamentally affecting an individual’s character and even physical appearance including skin color. Subject to the effects of tropical climate British settlers to the West Indies thus transformed were viewed as contaminated, degenerate, and culturally distinct by the metropole, their whiteness and Britishness called into question. Born in the colonies of British descent, the white Creole was inherently degraded. Disrupting the notion that whiteness and masculinity are stable social categories, intersectionality as an analytical concept makes space for the relational aspects of white Creole masculinity situated at the intersection of the distinct social systems and power structures of the metropole, the Montserratian planter class, and the emergent racialized violence of the plantation. Looking at the way the architecture of the planter’s dwelling house offset the deleterious effect of climate and his clothing asserted his white, British masculinity, this paper explores the fluid, relational, and intersectional aspects of race, gender, ethnicity, and class as they informed the complexities of white Montserratian Creole planter identity.
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At the Intersection: Destabilizing White Creole Masculinity at the 18th-Century Little Bay Plantation, Montserrat, West Indies. Jessica Striebel MacLean. Presented at The 81st Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Vancouver, British Columbia. 2017 ( tDAR id: 431954)
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min long: -90.747; min lat: 3.25 ; max long: -48.999; max lat: 27.683 ;
Abstract Id(s): 17448