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Starring Women – Celebrity, Patriarchy, and American Theater, 1790-1850 - Illinois Scholarship Online
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Starring Women: Celebrity, Patriarchy, and American Theater, 1790-1850

Sara E. Lampert


Star actresses and dancers were among the most publicly visible, celebrated, and often polarizing female public figures in the early United States. This book examines the careers and celebrity of the women and girls from Europe and America whose fame drove the growth and transformation of theater between 1790 and 1850 from the Atlantic seaboard to the trans-Appalachian West. Starring women introduced new repertoire—melodramas, breeches roles, dance pantomime and ballet—that catalyzed debates about social ownership of American culture, regional and national identity, and women’s place in public ... More

Keywords: American theatre, starring system, actresses, dancers, American culture, celebrity, sentimental domesticity, women and public life, family, gender

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2020 Print ISBN-13: 9780252043352
Published to Illinois Scholarship Online: May 2021 DOI:10.5622/illinois/9780252043352.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Sara E. Lampert, author
University of South Dakota