Paper $45.00 ISBN: 9789089644022 Published December 2012 For sale only in the United States, its dependencies, the Philippines, and Canada

Sex and Drugs before Rock 'n' Roll

Youth Culture and Masculinity during Holland's Golden Age

Benjamin B. Roberts

Benjamin B. Roberts

Distributed for Amsterdam University Press

318 pages | 20 color plates, 10 halftones | 7 1/2 x 9 3/4 | © 2012
Paper $45.00 ISBN: 9789089644022 Published December 2012 For sale only in the United States, its dependencies, the Philippines, and Canada
Sex and Drugs Before the Rock ’n’ Roll is a fascinating volume that presents an engaging overview of what it was like to be young and male in the Dutch Golden Age. Here, well-known cohorts of Rembrandt are examined for the ways in which they expressed themselves by defying conservative values and norms. This study reveals how these young men rebelled, breaking from previous generations: letting their hair grow long, wearing colorful clothing, drinking excessively, challenging city guards, being promiscuous, smoking, and singing lewd songs.
            Cogently argued, this study paints a compelling portrait of the youth culture of the Dutch Golden Age, at a time when the rising popularity of print made dissemination of new cultural ideas possible, while rising incomes and liberal attitudes created a generation of men behaving badly.

J. M. Morris, College of Mount St. Joseph | Choice
“Independent historian Roberts explores the lives and times of a heretofore-unexamined group—young men between the ages of 18 and 35, on the cusp of adulthood, living in what he claims to be a unique time and place in the history of Europe. Roberts focuses his study on the Dutch Republic during its ‘economic boom,’ a relatively brief time period, 1620 to 1630, and examines various sources, including letters, court records, and university rosters, to support his contentions. Sex, violence, school, alcohol use, and courtship allow Roberts to cast his net wide to try and include, wherever possible, the full scope of the lives of young men. . . . An important addition to the study of gender and masculinity in early modern Europe. . . . Recommended.”
Preface and Acknowledgements

    New approach to youth
    Sex and drugs before rock ’n’ roll
    The phase of life recognized as ‘Youth’
    Rites of passage
    Prodigal son
    Youth Culture
    Holland—heart of the Republic
    Before rock ’n’ roll
1. The Generation of the 1620s and 1630s
    Risk-taking behavior
    Amsterdam—a seventeenth-century boomtown
2. Appearance and Clothing in the 1620s and 1630s
    Long hair
    Republic sans court culture
    Silk ribbons and metallic accessories
    Bright colors
    Calculated slovenliness
    Sumptuary right of passage
    Extravagant clothing and the Prodigal Son
3. Drinking Like a Man
    Rite of passage
    Follies of youth
    Moral instruction
    Alcohol and young men from the upper and middle classes
    Honoring Bacchus
    Male bonding: cross social and economic drinking
    Alcohol and young men from the lower echelons
4. Violence
    Violence—a rite of passage
    Collective socialization process
    Unequal partners
    Urban socialization process
    Violence and the lower ranks
    Rebelling against authority
    Violence and the upper and middle classes
    Loco parentis
    Armed young men
    Student violence—a rite of passage
    Shattering glass
    Channelled violence
5. Sexuality and Courting
    Sex education
    Sexual maturity
    Courting activities
    Courting events
    Courting space
    Premarital chastity
    Sexual deviance abroad
6. Drugs?
    Tobacco and the young
    Smoking—a burning debate
    Medical discourse
7. Recreation before Rock ’n’ Roll
    Youth literature
    Love emblem books
    Song culture in the Republic
    Religious songbooks
    Secular songbooks
    Women and songbooks
    Song culture produced by and for the young
    Arcadian songbooks
    Boat trips
    Country rides
    Merrymaking at the beach
    Boundaries for the young
    Masculine role models and a national identity?
    The dark passenger of male role models

Illustration Credits
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