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In Mixed Company: Taverns and Public Life in Upper Canadaby Julia Roberts
Synopses & Reviews
In Mixed Company is a history of taverns as colonial public space, and of the women and men of varied backgrounds that found a place for themselves within it. These are the stories of three labourers who "amused themselves with drinking in good fellowship," of Captain Thomas, a wealthy Native trader, who "called for a small bowl of punch" to treat a Scotsman, and of an "English lady with her two small children ... very genteel and respectable" in a country tavern. They speak of white soldiers frequenting LeDuc's tavern, of Abraham Rex and William Murdoch, both black, celebrating Emancipation Day there, and of the keeper of the North American Hotel who promised "Ladies and Gentlemen" accommodation "any time they may wish to tarry." Reconstructed from tavern-keepers' accounts, court records, diaries, travelogues and letters, In Mixed Company tell of time spent in mixed company and the myriad, unequal ways, of finding room in tavern culture. It challenges comfortable certainties about who belonged where in colonial society. It is recommended reading for tavern aficionados, general readers and historians of gender, race and culture.
In Mixed Company explores taverns as colonial public space and how men and women of diverse backgrounds - Native and newcomer, privileged and labouring, white and non-white - negotiated a place for themselves within them. The stories that emerge unsettle comfortable certainties about who belonged where in colonial society. Colonial taverns were places where labourers enjoyed libations with wealthy Aboriginal traders like Captain Thomas, who also treated a Scotsman to a small bowl of punch; where white soldiers rubbed shoulders with black colonists out to celebrate Emancipation Day; where English ladies and their small children sought refuge for a night.
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History and Social Science » Anthropology » Cultural Anthropology