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The Soul of PleasureSentiment and Sensation in Nineteenth-Century American Mass Entertainment$
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David Monod

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9781501702389

Published to Cornell Scholarship Online: January 2017

DOI: 10.7591/cornell/9781501702389.001.0001

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Any Dodge Is Fair to Raise a Good Sensation

Any Dodge Is Fair to Raise a Good Sensation

The Danger and Promise of Sensationalism

(p.143) Chapter 5 Any Dodge Is Fair to Raise a Good Sensation
The Soul of Pleasure

David Monod

Cornell University Press

This chapter narrates the rampage of the “two human butchers” after going to a concert saloon. Both were “brutes” who had been aroused by drink and sexual desire to violence. After the event, concert saloons were viewed as the chief “cause which tends to build up such fiends.” However, for many cultural observers, the concert saloons were only the most conspicuous sign of a surging virus. The Civil War was behind the moral crisis because it had discouraged the faithful and fostered dissipation. Alcohol consumption rose during the war at a rate that temperance advocates considered “formidable,” and it continued to rise, especially in the South, in the decade after it.

Keywords:   concert saloon, cultural observers, Civil War, moral crisis, alcohol consumption

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