cover of book
 

Before They Could Vote: American Women's Autobiographical Writing, 1819–1919
edited by Sidonie A. Smith and Julia Watson
University of Wisconsin Press, 2006
Cloth: 978-0-299-22050-1 | Paper: 978-0-299-22054-9 | eISBN: 978-0-299-22053-2
Library of Congress Classification HQ1412.B44 2006
Dewey Decimal Classification 305.4092273

ABOUT THIS BOOK | AUTHOR BIOGRAPHY | REVIEWS | TOC | REQUEST ACCESSIBLE FILE
ABOUT THIS BOOK

The life narratives in this collection are by ethnically diverse women of energy and ambition—some well known, some forgotten over generations—who confronted barriers of gender, class, race, and sexual difference as they pursued or adapted to adventurous new lives in a rapidly changing America. The engaging selections—from captivity narratives to letters, manifestos, criminal confessions, and childhood sketches—span a hundred years in which women increasingly asserted themselves publicly. Some rose to positions of prominence as writers, activists, and artists; some sought education or wrote to support themselves and their families; some transgressed social norms in search of new possibilities. Each woman’s story is strikingly individual, yet the brief narratives in this anthology collectively chart bold new visions of women’s agency.