Department of History
Gossip is not only a guilty pleasure; it is also an important tool of social control. Nowhere is this more evident than in the nineteenth‐century gentlemen's clubs of London. This article looks at the private lives of elite men whose gossip helped shape class and gender ideals. Archival documents, private memoirs and periodical literature provide both an insider and outsider vision of a very private world. Looking at how men gossiped points to codes of gentlemanly behaviour, the importance of homosocial life, and the place of oral culture in a modern, literate age.
Amy Milne-Smith, ‘Club Talk: Gossip, Masculinity and Oral Communities in Late Nineteenth-Century London’ Gender & History, Vol.21 No.1 April 2009, pp. 86–106. DOI: 10.1111/j.1468-0424.2009.01536.x