This is a collection of new essays opening introspective space for further exploration into constructions of ",We the People...", during the mid-to-late nineteenth century. It does so by interrogating intersections of pro-enslavement and anti-enslavement expressions of cultural nationalism, investigating assorted expressions of partisanship within dramatic literature and live performance (broadly defined), and by probing effects of armed conflict on notions of ",nation,", ",theatre,", ",performance,", and other markers of communal identity. Enacting Nationhood is distinctive in that the essays collected here call into question many widely-held assumptions about the intricate theatrical past of the period under review. This said, the essays in this collection are certainly not to be taken as a comprehensive set of viewpoints. Rather, they are to be understood as an accompanying voice in a continuing discussion regarding an ever-shifting aesthetic contract between cultural nationalism and dramatic literature and live performance (broadly defined) from 1855-1899.
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