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Title: 'Kill the Indian, save the man' : manhood at the Carlisle Indian Industrial School, 1879-1918
Author: Bentley, Matthew Steven
ISNI:       0000 0004 2736 0559
Awarding Body: University of East Anglia
Current Institution: University of East Anglia
Date of Award: 2012
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This dissertation examines the role of manhood in the programme to “civilise” the Indian at the Carlisle Indian Industrial School. Using gender and race theory as a frame for archival research, it argues that the model of manhood in operation at Carlisle was contested and changed throughout the school’s history. The hegemonic model at Carlisle’s beginning reflected the school’s focus on civilised manliness, which included the ideals of self-sufficiency, individualism, and Christian morality. This model was progressively displaced by an athletic version, which promoted masculinity in the form of physical power and victory. The dissertation will show how the contest between these two models of manhood came to a head in the 1914 Congressional Investigation of Carlisle. During this investigation, the extent to which sex and alcohol had become inseparable from the athletic model of manhood as well as their prevalence among Carlisle students was revealed. As a result, school officials worked to return Carlisle to the original ideal of civilised manliness, but by this time the school was out of step with the wider demands of government Indian policy; in 1918 it was closed This work extends previous academic examinations of gender at non-reservation boarding schools through its focus on masculinity. Specifically, it identifies, defines and explores how Carlisle’s models of manhood changed according to the demands of the school, government officials and the wider public. It also examines how the school used these different models of manhood to promote the success of the institution. After Carlisle’s commitment to rapid Indian assimilation was called into question by government policy, the school increasingly utilised the athletic model of manhood to demonstrate the school’s success. Manhood was a central component of the school’s programme to eliminate Indian savagery. As such, the analysis of manhood at Carlisle provides critical insight into government Indian policy and white definitions of gender, as well as illuminating the centrality of manhood to the concept of civilisation.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available