Carroll, Bret E.
SAGE Publications, Inc.
103 - 104
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American Masculinities: A Historical Encyclopedia
The confidence man—a man who takes advantage of people by gaining their confidence, convincing them to trust him with their possessions, and then stealing those possessions— was a male archetype of Victorian middle-class culture. He symbolized middle-class Americans' anxieties about the potential for predatory male behavior in the increasingly anonymous, impersonal, and competitive social world being created by urbanization and the market revolution.
Published Version (Please cite this version)http://dx.doi.org/10.4135/9781412956369.n50