Graduate Theses & Dissertations

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knight and his horse
This thesis examines the social impact of horses on French elites between 1150 and 1300. Using courtly literature, a veterinary treatise, manuscript illuminations, archeological studies, material artefacts, and account books, it explores the place of horses in elite society—practical and symbolic—and assesses the social costs of elite use and ownership of horses. While horses served practical functions for elites, their use and investment in horses clearly went far beyond practicality, since elites used horses recreationally and sought prestigious horses and highly decorated equipment. Their owners used horses in displays of power, status, and wealth, as well as in displays of conspicuous consumption and the performance of gender roles. The social display associated with horses was integrally tied to the ideology and performance of chivalry. This study examines the broader use of horses by elites to understand their place in the elite culture of the High Middle Ages. Author Keywords: Horses, Knighthood, Medieval France, Military History, Nobility, Social History
Edward IV, The Woodvilles, and the Politics of Idealism, C. 1464-83
This thesis examines performance and propaganda in the reign of Edward IV and explores the ways in which Edward, his queen Elizabeth Woodville, and her brother Anthony sought to legitimize their newfound positions. It argues that all three sought to 'perform idealism' to bolster their claims to their respective positions, presenting themselves as close to the contemporary ideal figures of king, queen, and nobleman. This view makes Edward's marriage to Elizabeth a deliberate political act, rather than merely a marriage of love, as some have argued. This thesis argues that 'performing idealism' was thus a deliberate strategy deployed by individuals in a precarious social position to justify their privilege. It also examines chivalry and the Order of the Garter under Edward, his foreign policy, the patronage of William Caxton, and the education of Edward V to explore the many ways Edward sought to justify his claim to the throne. Author Keywords: Anthony Woodville, Edward IV, Elizabeth Woodville, England, Queenship, Wars of the Roses
Lives of Young Deliquents
The Royal Philanthropic Society (RPS) was the first institution in England to care for young offenders. While historians have demonstrated the legal importance of this institution, none have examined the experience of the youths it attempted to reform. The admission registers of the RPS reveal the importance of adults and peers in the experiences of the inmates of the institution, as both could be sources of conflict and support. Youths could express power over their own lives by resisting the authority of adults, but also by conforming to the rules of the RPS. Inmates could restrict the choices of their peers by working with the RPS, but also through peer pressure or violence. Networks of collaboration and youth culture could also exert a positive impact on peers. Because this thesis represents male youths as actors, it makes a significant addition to recent histories emphasizing the impact of the subaltern groups on eighteenth-century reform movements. Author Keywords: Conformity, Juvenile Delinquency, Penal Reform, Power Relationships, Royal Philanthropic Society, Youth Culutre
Press Rhetoric and Human Rights in The Carter Era
Jimmy Carter and his administration varied the ways in which they addressed human rights concerns internationally. There was a strong, often emotional evocation of human rights in reference to countries that were less economically, strategically, or politically important to the United States and the foreign policy goals of the Carter administration. This was not present in Carter’s approach to addressing human rights concerns in important allies, such as South Korea, or with countries where relations were fragile and important, such as China and the USSR. This ambivalence in addressing human rights in strategically important nations was compounded by Carter’s disavowal of linkage policies. It was this ambivalence that made the moral foreign policy a failure. While there were international situations out of his control, his continued leniency and unbalanced application of linkage and focus on adherence to human right practices internationally, lessened the administration’s ability to respond to international tragedy. Author Keywords: American Foreign Policy, Government Indexing, Human Rights, Jimmy Carter, Presidential Press Relations
Branding of the Prime Minister
From 1949-1957, Prime Minister Louis St. Laurent was the face of the Liberal Party. Party branding was wholly devoted to his friendly, ‘Uncle Louis’ brand image. St. Laurent’s image was manipulated and manufactured without public preconception, establishing the modern tactics of personal branding still used by his successors. This thesis studies the elections of 1949, 1953, and 1957, analysing photos, advertisements, speeches, archival documents, memoirs, newspapers, and other sources to show the development of Liberal branding strategy. It employs political scientist Margaret Scammell’s conceptualization of brand theory, showing how marketers used emotional brand differentiators and rational substantive performance indicators to sell ‘Uncle Louis’ to Canadians. The Liberals used St. Laurent and branding tactics to win two massive majorities in 1949 and 1953, and the Diefenbaker Tories used those same tactics to defeat them in 1957. ‘Uncle Louis’ proved the effectiveness of personal branding and leader-centered campaigns in Canadian politics. Author Keywords: Brand Theory, Canadian Politics, Elections, Liberal Party of Canada, Louis St. Laurent, Political Marketing
Civil Aviation and Scheduled Air Services in Colonial Botswana, 1935-1966
This thesis provides an in-depth and chronological study of the development of civil aviation in the Bechuanaland Protectorate (today’s Botswana), and the role played by the British Government in the development of this form of transport. The thesis argues that Her Majesty’s Government’s neglect and very little interest in its protectorate’s civil aviation represented a form of underdevelopment. The study also reveals the constant contradiction between the neglect of the imperial government and the constant lobbying on the part of colonial administration in the Protectorate for the establishment of an air service. To the colonial administrators, civil aviation represented a symbol of modernity and progress as well as more practical advantages such as mobility. The thesis finally concludes that the Bechuanaland Protectorate’s first airline was established due to growing nationalism both locally and on the continent, at large. The British Government facilitated the establishment of the airline as an attempt to appear benevolent to the protectorate on the eve of independence. Author Keywords:
'Land Displacement and Coping Strategies'
This thesis explores the social history of the Marange people of eastern Zimbabwe from the 1960s to 2015. It uses historical episodes like the recurring droughts, the 1970s war of independence, the ‘crisis in Zimbabwe,’ that has been traced from the late - 1990s, and the diamond mining story to demonstrate how the inhabitants interacted with their environment. It argues that the relocation project that began in 2010 had a severely disruptive impact on the families relocated to the relocation area - ARDA Transau - making the case that the Marange relocation project was a ‘development disaster.’ While the provision of accommodation had a notable positive impact on the majority of the displaced households, family needs were not always met. For instance, large families such as those of the dominant polygamous followers of the African Apostolic Church of Johanne Marange were not provided with adequate housing. Also, the livelihoods of the displaced households were shattered by the relocation exercise. In their efforts to creatively adapt to these new constraints, the displacees had diverse coping strategies like selling firewood, illegally extending space for crop cultivation, artisanal mining, vending and begging for food to eke out a living. Author Keywords: Coping Strategies, Crisis in Zimbabwe, Development, Displacement, Land, Livelihoods
Controlling the Feminine Body in Public
Within this project, I have identified a new pattern of instruction, surrounding women’s bodies and their movement within the public space, present within didactic literature produced during the reign of Charles VI of France (1368-1422). This pattern, present in the texts Le livre du Chevalier de la Tour Landry pour l’instruction de ses filles, Le Menagier de Paris, Le livre des trois vertus and Mirroir des dames, sought to shame control women’s physical presentation in public through use of imagery, stories and fear of pride. Using modern gendered body theory presented by Luce Irigaray and Judith Butler to examine the rise of this pattern, this project then concludes it represents an attempt of the social authority to present a passive feminine body in the public space in order to display male power during a time of social instability. Author Keywords: body history, didactic literature, medieval education, medieval France, women, women's bodies
Underdevelopment in Eastern Bechuanaland
This thesis offers a comprehensive look at the changing roles of a colonial built railway in what is now eastern Botswana. It was built for the extraction of mineral wealth and migration of cheap African labour in Southern Africa but it later assumed a different role of shaping the modern Botswana state. The thesis deals with several other issues related to the railway in Bechuanaland including land alienation, the colonial disregard of the chiefs’ authority, racial discrimination and the economic underdevelopment of Bechuanaland. Since there were no other significant colonial developments at the time of independence, this thesis argues that the railway was the only important feature of the British colonisation of Bechuanaland. From early on, the railway attracted different cultures, identities and religions. It was also instrumental in the introduction of an indigenous capitalist class into Bechuanaland. Author Keywords: Bechuanaland, Botswana, colonisation, migration, railway, underdevelopment
Alone in Power
The thesis uses three case studies of President Nixon’s foreign policy in South-east Asia to analyze presidential domestic-making. The theoretical concept of personality politics is used to analyze the Nixon administration and foreign policy. Nixon’s secretive nature combined with his mistrust of the press and bureaucracy to create an office structure that restricted the involvement and notification of others of his foreign policy. This thesis also takes into account the domestic climate that Nixon was operating within, including significant antiwar opposition, an adversarial media, and an ideologically opposed bureaucracy. Nixon’s foreign policy was ultimately the result of a perfect storm of factors. The president’s natural penchant for secrecy, along with his mistrust of the press and bureaucracy, combined with the American political environment that was in many instances ideologically set against him, also helped shape his foreign policy. Author Keywords: American Presidency, China, National Security Council, Richard Nixon, US Foreign Policy, 1969-1973, Vietnam War
In the Wilderness at Föhrenwald
In 1945, few refugee cases were as complicated as those of the Jewish survivors of the Holocaust who found themselves stranded in defeated Germany but could neither return home due to antisemitic violence nor immigrate to most countries due to extant prewar visa restrictions. Between 1945 and 1947, some 150,000 Jews fleeing ongoing antisemitic violence joined them in American-occupied Bavaria, including thousands who had survived in the Soviet Union—a phenomenon Tony Judt has described as “surviving the peace.” This thesis focuses on Föhrenwald, a United Nations refugee camp outside of Munich. It interweaves oral histories with archival materials from the United Nations and the American Joint Distribution Committee to apply Atina Grossmann’s work on “close encounters” between Jews, Germans, and Americans to a single refugee camp. What emerges is a portrait of the vibrant, if transient, political, social, and educational life Jews built “in the wilderness” of Germany between 1945 and 1947. Author Keywords: Displaced Persons, Föhrenwald, Holocaust survivors, Occupied Germany (1945–49), United Nations Relief and Rehabilitation Administration
Witches and Bawds as Elderly Women in England, 1680-1730
Many print sources from 1680 to 1730 depicted bawds and witches as figures of transgressive elderly femininity. They were often described as having roughly the same anti-social behaviour, age, and gender. Both witches and bawds were seen as seducing innocents into a life of sin, associating with the devil, and acting lustful and unmotherly. Furthermore, they were connected with Catholicism and were thought to unite sinners against English Protestant society. The physical descriptions of the witch and procuress also bore significant patterns in presenting deformity, disfigurement, smelliness, rottenness, and death, traits generally connected with elderly women. Though historians have recognized the tendency of the witch or bawd to be characterized as an old woman, none have conducted a systematic comparison of the two stereotypes. Such an analysis can offer insight about the social anxieties around aging femininity in this period. Author Keywords: bawd, cheap print, elderly women, old age, witch, witchcraft

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