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Nine Centuries of ManManhood and Masculinity in Scottish History$
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Lynn Abrams and Elizabeth L. Ewan

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9781474403894

Published to Edinburgh Scholarship Online: September 2017

DOI: 10.3366/edinburgh/9781474403894.001.0001

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A Wartime Family Romance: Narratives of Masculinity and Intimacy during World War Two

A Wartime Family Romance: Narratives of Masculinity and Intimacy during World War Two

Chapter:
(p.160) 8 A Wartime Family Romance: Narratives of Masculinity and Intimacy during World War Two
Source:
Nine Centuries of Man
Author(s):

Lynn Abrams

Publisher:
Edinburgh University Press
DOI:10.3366/edinburgh/9781474403894.003.0009

This chapter focuses on a neglected facet of Scottish men’s sense of self – the expression of intimacy and emotion in the context of one man’s letters home to his wife during an extended posting abroad in World War Two. Emotional openness, vulnerability, affection, devotion, romantic love and desire - these are not qualities commonly identified in the narratives of masculinity in Scotland in the twentieth century. The war provided the backdrop for a correspondence which allowed a serving soldier to explore his emotional side, and sustain his marriage, not only by consuming narratives of love but producing them too. Through a close examination of personal correspondence this chapter argues that this correspondent encapsulated a modern masculine self that Scottish men were to practice with greater confidence in the postwar decades.

Keywords:   emotion, intimacy, letters, love, marriage, masculinity, self, World War Two, Scotland

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