Williams, Lindsay. “"Their Mutuall Embracements"”, Boston College, 2008. http://hdl.handle.net/2345/543.
Routinely recognized as deeply patriarchal, early modern England is an era in which men and characteristics of the male gender are assumed to have held unrelenting sway over their female counterparts. This description is largely justifiable, particularly given the era's legal codes. However, this thesis seeks to enrich discussions on early modern England by examining its male-female relationships through a markedly different lens. By highlighting the close relationships that existed alongside patriarchal mandates in the era - husband and wife, father and daughter, mother and son - a fuller portrait of the period is sketched. Through an examination of how a variety of genres - medical, religious, and dramatic - grappled with moments of union between the two sexes, particularly physical union and its concurrent or resultant emotional bonds, this thesis offers greater insight into how walls to male-female connection were both raised and bridged in the time period.