Ale, Beer and Brewsters in England

Ale, Beer and Brewsters in England : Women's Work in a Changing World, 1300-1600

3.54 (74 ratings by Goodreads)
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Women brewed and sold most of the ale drunk in medieval England, but after 1350, men slowly took over the trade. By 1600, most brewers in London-as well as in many towns and villages-were male, not female. Drawing on a wide variety of sources-such as literary and artistic materials, court records, accounts, and administrative orders-Judith Bennett vividly describes how brewsters (that is, female brewers) slowly left the trade. She tells a story of commercial growth, gild formation, changing technologies, innovative regulations, and finally, enduring ideas that linked brewsters with drunkenness and disorder. Examining this instance of seemingly dramatic change in women's status, Bennett argues that it included significant elements of continuity. Women might not have brewed in 1600 as often as they had in 1300, but they still worked predominantly in low-status, low-skilled, and poorly remunerated tasks. Using the experiences of brewsters to rewrite the history of women's work during the rise of capitalism, Ale, Beer, and Brewsters in England offers a telling story of the endurance of patriarchy in a time of dramatic economic more

Product details

  • Paperback | 276 pages
  • 154.94 x 233.68 x 12.7mm | 340.19g
  • Oxford University Press Inc
  • New York, United States
  • English
  • line figures, tables
  • 0195126505
  • 9780195126501
  • 746,603

Review quote

an original contribution to this history of drinking and brewing in England ... Bennett's original contribution to the field is the study that she has made of the surviving records for breaches of the assize of ale. Bennett's volume will be of considerable interest to scholars and students working in a number of different areas. * The Times Higher Education Supplement * This is a stimulating book setting out developments in the brewing industry in a thought-provoking way ... The book is well written, supplied with excellent endnotes testifying to the breadth of the author's scholarly contacts as well as her own researches, and provided with a full bibliography, helpful index and a useful note on pre-decimal currency and medieval liquid measures. * Helen Jewell, Urban History * fascinating facts and figures * Denis Kilcommons, Huddersfield Daily Examiner *show more

About Judith M. Bennett

Judith M. Bennett is Professor Emerita of History and John R. Hubbard Chair in British History Emerita at University of Southern California. She has published extensively on the history of women, particularly women in the middle ages. Her books include Women in the Medieval English Countryside (Oxford, 1987) and Sisters and Workers in the Middle Ages (co-editor, 1989).show more

Rating details

74 ratings
3.54 out of 5 stars
5 26% (19)
4 34% (25)
3 18% (13)
2 15% (11)
1 8% (6)
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