Controversy in Seventeenth-Century English Coffeehouses: Transcultural Interactions with an Oriental Import

Persistent Link:
http://hdl.handle.net/10150/594652
Title:
Controversy in Seventeenth-Century English Coffeehouses: Transcultural Interactions with an Oriental Import
Author:
Pierce, Mary Lynn
Issue Date:
2015
Publisher:
The University of Arizona.
Rights:
Copyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
Embargo:
Release 30-Apr-2019
Abstract:
By analyzing and contextualizing the polarized discourses on coffee and coffeehouses in post-1652 England, this dissertation argues that the divisive worldviews of the English population at this critical historical juncture shaped the contentious reception of coffee. Countless scholarly efforts dealing with seventeenth-century coffeehouses, those of London in particular, have helped explaining the rapid growing popularity of coffee and the establishments in which it was consumed, the coffeehouse. Building upon exiting literature, this work advances a new approach to shed light the interconnection between social and cultural anxieties, paradoxes and contradictions in seventeenth-century English society, and the contradictory discourses surrounding the rise of coffee in England. My project demonstrates that pervasive anxieties about the rise of religious heterodoxy, the ambiguous dispositions of the English people towards the Ottoman Turks, and the ever-present concerns surrounding the tenuous state of patriarchal manhood collectively helped to both encourage and discourage interactions with the Islamic practice of coffee drinking in coffeehouses. Coffee and coffeehouses came from the Ottoman Empire, the land of the presumed Turks. One sector of society, the optimists, embraced the exotic novelty from the Islamic world and participated enthusiastically in a custom shared with their Turkish, Arab and Persian counterparts since the early sixteenth century. Conversely, the pessimists vilified the adoption of cultural and dietary practices from a non-Christian society; they condemned the enthusiasts' cosmopolitanism as a sign of disloyalty that would only deepen discord in the nation. Indeed, they proclaimed the craze for the Turkish-imported habit as a sign of degeneration, threatening not just Englishmen's religiosity, but also their manliness. Coffee and coffeehouse came from the Ottoman Empire, the land of the presumed effeminate Turks at that. Intimate intermingling with this imported novelty thus compromised England's identity and even sovereignty. By relying upon a borderlands approach that is inspired by gender analysis, this dissertation seeks an alternative theoretical path to explain the controversy and contention swirling around a new drink and novel spaces of sociability among a populace dislocated by years of religious, political and cultural turmoil.
Type:
text; Electronic Dissertation
Keywords:
Cuckoldry; Manhood Anxiety; Ottoman Empire; Seventeenth-Century England; Transcultural Interactions; History; Coffee
Degree Name:
Ph.D.
Degree Level:
doctoral
Degree Program:
Graduate College; History
Degree Grantor:
University of Arizona
Advisor:
Tabili, Laura

Full metadata record

DC FieldValue Language
dc.language.isoen_USen
dc.titleControversy in Seventeenth-Century English Coffeehouses: Transcultural Interactions with an Oriental Importen_US
dc.creatorPierce, Mary Lynnen
dc.contributor.authorPierce, Mary Lynnen
dc.date.issued2015en
dc.publisherThe University of Arizona.en
dc.rightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.en
dc.description.releaseRelease 30-Apr-2019en
dc.description.abstractBy analyzing and contextualizing the polarized discourses on coffee and coffeehouses in post-1652 England, this dissertation argues that the divisive worldviews of the English population at this critical historical juncture shaped the contentious reception of coffee. Countless scholarly efforts dealing with seventeenth-century coffeehouses, those of London in particular, have helped explaining the rapid growing popularity of coffee and the establishments in which it was consumed, the coffeehouse. Building upon exiting literature, this work advances a new approach to shed light the interconnection between social and cultural anxieties, paradoxes and contradictions in seventeenth-century English society, and the contradictory discourses surrounding the rise of coffee in England. My project demonstrates that pervasive anxieties about the rise of religious heterodoxy, the ambiguous dispositions of the English people towards the Ottoman Turks, and the ever-present concerns surrounding the tenuous state of patriarchal manhood collectively helped to both encourage and discourage interactions with the Islamic practice of coffee drinking in coffeehouses. Coffee and coffeehouses came from the Ottoman Empire, the land of the presumed Turks. One sector of society, the optimists, embraced the exotic novelty from the Islamic world and participated enthusiastically in a custom shared with their Turkish, Arab and Persian counterparts since the early sixteenth century. Conversely, the pessimists vilified the adoption of cultural and dietary practices from a non-Christian society; they condemned the enthusiasts' cosmopolitanism as a sign of disloyalty that would only deepen discord in the nation. Indeed, they proclaimed the craze for the Turkish-imported habit as a sign of degeneration, threatening not just Englishmen's religiosity, but also their manliness. Coffee and coffeehouse came from the Ottoman Empire, the land of the presumed effeminate Turks at that. Intimate intermingling with this imported novelty thus compromised England's identity and even sovereignty. By relying upon a borderlands approach that is inspired by gender analysis, this dissertation seeks an alternative theoretical path to explain the controversy and contention swirling around a new drink and novel spaces of sociability among a populace dislocated by years of religious, political and cultural turmoil.en
dc.typetexten
dc.typeElectronic Dissertationen
dc.subjectCuckoldryen
dc.subjectManhood Anxietyen
dc.subjectOttoman Empireen
dc.subjectSeventeenth-Century Englanden
dc.subjectTranscultural Interactionsen
dc.subjectHistoryen
dc.subjectCoffeeen
thesis.degree.namePh.D.en
thesis.degree.leveldoctoralen
thesis.degree.disciplineGraduate Collegeen
thesis.degree.disciplineHistoryen
thesis.degree.grantorUniversity of Arizonaen
dc.contributor.advisorTabili, Lauraen
dc.contributor.committeememberTabili, Lauraen
dc.contributor.committeememberClancy-Smith, Juliaen
dc.contributor.committeememberDarling, Lindaen
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