Singleness in Britain, 1960-1990: identity, gender and social change

Priscott, Emily (2019) Singleness in Britain, 1960-1990: identity, gender and social change. Doctoral thesis (PhD), University of Sussex.

[img] PDF - Published Version
Restricted to SRO admin only

Download (1MB)


In this thesis I consider the relationship between gender and singleness between 1960 and 1990, arguing that, as an identity category, singleness can shed light on the changing gender norms and broader context of social change.
The 1960s, 1970s and 1980s were crucial decades in the development of new ideas about gender and sexuality. However, the perceived differences between single men and women, and what was socially sanctioned for each, highlighted the continuing influence of the sexual double standard. The persistence of stereotypes about spinsterhood well into the 1980s complicated the notion of social progress during the 1960s and 1970s, and shows that less progressive views about women were still readily accessible. Likewise, the bachelor playboy mythology that popularly defined single men simplified masculinity and desirable male behaviour. Divided thematically into chapters about single stereotypes, the home and single parenthood, this thesis looks at how single identity was categorised through language, popular culture, the press and sociological literature

Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Schools and Departments: School of History, Art History and Philosophy > History
Subjects: D History General and Old World > DA History of Great Britain
H Social Sciences > HQ The Family. Marriage. Women > HQ0012 Sexual life > HQ0018.55 Gender identity
H Social Sciences > HQ The Family. Marriage. Women > HQ0503 The Family. Marriage. Home > HQ0800 Single people
Depositing User: Library Cataloguing
Date Deposited: 12 Jul 2019 09:02
Last Modified: 12 Jul 2019 09:02

View download statistics for this item

📧 Request an update