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2014 | 2(7), Historia i płeć | 17–35

Article title

From noble knights to Polish warriors? Reconfigurations of masculinities and femininities in Polish revolutionary warfare and during the times of partitions


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The article describes the relevance of gender images for the explanation of social and political change at the example of the Polish history since the late 18th century. While focussing on the aspects of political reforms in the field of the military and the bureaucracy it shows how the arenas of female and male agency had been re-configured in a time of abrupt social and political changes which had been characterizing Polish history in the era of reform politics, partitions, and the following decades of missing political independence. The author shows how the (at least until the beginning of the 19th century) rather permeable boundaries between the public and private sphere had become more and more fixed and how simultaneously the fields of male and female agency were ever more closely attached to the respective spheres. Besides that she elaborates on socially adequate forms of masculinities and femininities, whereby it becomes clear, that emotionality once seen as an indispensable element in the education of future soldiers and citizens had come under critique during the 19th century. According to changes in the legal systems (introduction of modern codes of civil law), to new political concepts (organic work) and last but not least to the biologization of gender relations new ideals of conduct in the private and public sphere were ever more attached to allegedly natural characteristics and abilities of men and women.




Physical description


  • Uniwersytet w Siegen, Niemcy


Document Type

Publication order reference


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