Who are "the people'? gender, citizenship, and the making of the American nation

S. A. Marston

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

103 Scopus citations


Although theorization about the role of the state and nation building has been a key element in the revitalization of human geography in recent years, very little attention has been paid to the concept of citizenship and its relationship to the state and the nation. This paper is an attempt to draw arguments about citizenship, particularly as they relate to gender, into the current human geographic discourse on theories of the state and nationalism. An examination of some of the historical research on how cultural ideals about the natural roles of men and women interacted with the construction of the early American national community is undertaken. The focus is upon seventeenth-century and eighteenth-century liberal bourgeois notions about public and private life and the way in which the problematic relationship between gender and nationhood undermined republican claims to universal membership. Geographers interested in issues of state formation and nationalism are encouraged to consider the importance of feminist approaches to citizenship. -Author

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)449-458
Number of pages10
JournalEnvironment & Planning D: Society & Space
Issue number4
StatePublished - 1990

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Environmental Science (miscellaneous)


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