“Going the Way of All Flesh”: Masculinity as Vice in The Dutch Courtesan

Kate Aughterson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Marston’s Freevill articulates a range of discourses delineating urban masculinity in the early modern period: husbandry, heterosexual desire, phallicism, acquisitive economics, rationalism, and in binary opposition to femininity, the physical body and beasts, in a particular dramaturgical context. His “free” nature and libertine views are self-consciously within the allegorical tradition of the Vice figure, enacting and debating sexual temptation through gender and masculinity. Marston uses genre and dramaturgy to critique the discourses of types of masculinity by showing how masculinity is constructed, discursive, and performative. This article participates in the recent theoretical reformulations of early modern masculinity.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)21-33
Number of pages13
JournalCahiers Élisabéthains
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sept 2009


  • masculinity
  • vice
  • dramaturgy
  • libertinism
  • discursive contingency


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