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Featured History Booklist

Women's Rights

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Alice Paul: Equality for Women
by Christine A. Lunardini Details
"Alice Paul: Equality for Women" traces the dominant and unwavering role Paul played in the passage of the Nineteenth Amendment, granting the vote to American women. The dramatic details of Paul's imprisonment and solitary confinement, hunger strike, and force-feeding at the hands of the U.S. government illustrate her fierce devotion to the cause she spent her life promoting. Placed in the context of the first half of the 20th century, Paul's story also touches on issues of labor reform, race, class, World War I patriotism, America's emerging role as a global power, and the global struggle for women's rights.
America and the Pill: A History of Promise, Peril, and Liberation
by Elaine Tyler May Details
In 1960, the FDA approved the contraceptive commonly known as "the pill." Advocates, developers, and manufacturers believed that the convenient new drug would put an end to unwanted pregnancy, ensure happy marriages, and even eradicate poverty. But as renowned historian Elaine Tyler May reveals in "America and the Pill," it was women who embraced it and created change. They demonstrated that the pill was about much more than family planning; it offered women control over their bodies and their lives. From little-known accounts of the early years to personal testimonies from young women today, May illuminates what the pill did and did not achieve during its half-century on the market.
For Her Own Good: Two Centuries of the Experts' Advice to Women
by Barbara Ehrenreich Details
Since the 19th century, "experts" have been telling women how to take care of themselves. Generations of highly respected mainstream physicians have offered--and continue to offer--advice on nearly every aspect of a woman's life. Updated to cover the 25 years since it was first published, this provocative new perspective on history exposes the countless myths told to women in the name of science.
Poems from the Women's Movement
by Honor Moore Details
The women's movement of the 1960s, 70s, and 80s generated an extraordinary outpouring of poetry that captured an age of expectancy, defiant purpose, and exuberant exploration. Here, brought together for the first time, are the poems that gave voice to a revolution, including works by Sylvia Plath, Adrienne Rich, Muriel Rukeyser, Anne Sexton, Sonia Sanchez, Lucille Clifton, May Swenson, Alice Walker, Anne Waldman, Sharon Olds, and many others.
Revolutionary Heart: The Life of Clarina Nichols and the Pioneering Crusade for Women's Rights
by Diane Eickhoff Details
"Revolutionary Heart" is the first published biography of Clarina Nicols, the Vermont newspaper publisher and Kansas pioneer who overcame both hardship and heartbreak, and devoted her life to improving conditions for women. Author Diane Eickhoff details the rise of the women's rights movement from 1848 to 1867, when Nichols was involved in the historic campaign for suffrage in Kansas.
Seneca Falls and the Origins of the Women's Rights Movement
by Sally Gregory McMillen Details
In the quiet town of Seneca Falls, New York, over the course of two days in July, 1848, a small group of women and men held a convention that would launch the women's rights movement and change the course of history. The implications of that convention were felt around the world and continue to be felt today. In "Seneca Falls and the Origins of the Women's Rights Movement," the latest contribution to Oxford's acclaimed Pivotal Moments in American History series, Sally McMillen details the significance of that revolutionary convention and the enormous changes it produced.
Sisters: The Lives of America's Suffragists
by Jean H. Baker Details
They forever changed America: Lucy Stone, Susan B. Anthony, Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Frances Willard, and Alice Paul. At their revolution's start, a woman's right to speak in public was questioned. By its conclusion in 1920, the victory in women's suffrage had also encompassed the most fundamental rights of citizenship: the right to control wages, hold property, to contract, to sue, and to testify in court. Their struggle was confrontational and violent. And, as in all revolutions before them, their struggle was personal. In "Sisters," historian Jean H. Baker interweaves the women's private lives with their public achievements, presenting these revolutionary women in three dimensions, humanized, and marvelously approachable.
Susan B. Anthony and the Struggle for Equal Rights
by Christine L. Ridarsky Details
Although Susan B. Anthony is best remembered for leading the campaign for women's suffrage, she worked in multiple movements for equality, including the antislavery movement, and movements for Native American rights, temperance, and labor reform. In doing so, she forged alliances with other activists to forward a broad social justice agenda. The essays here chart the long career of Anthony in this rich historical context. They also show the efforts of a wide variety of women and the challenges they faced in the continued struggle for equality.
The Second Sex
by Simone de Beauvoir Details
Newly translated, unabridged, and brilliantly introduced by Judith Thurman, Simone de Beauvoir's masterpiece weaves together history, philosophy, economics, biology, and a host of other disciplines to analyze the Western notion of "woman" and to explore the power of sexuality. Sixty years after its initial publication, "The Second Sex" is still as eye-opening and pertinent as ever. A vital and life-changing work that has dramatically revised the way women talk and think about themselves, Beauvoir's magisterial treatise continues to provoke and inspire.
When Everything Changed: The Amazing Journey of American Women, from 1960 to the Present
by Gail Collins Details
Gail Collins, New York Times columnist and bestselling author, recounts the astounding revolution in women's lives over the past 50 years with her usual wit and straightforward style. "When Everything Changed" begins in 1960, when most American women had to get their husbands' permission to apply for a credit card. It ends in 2008 with Hillary Clinton's historic presidential campaign. This was a time of cataclysmic change, when, after 400 years, expectations about the lives of American women were smashed in just a generation. It has been an era of drama and dreams--some dashed and others realized beyond anyone's imagination.
Women's Suffrage in America: An Eyewitness History
by Elizabeth Frost-Knappman Details
Part of a series of historical references, this volume chronicles the women's suffrage movement in America between 1820 and 1920, during which time leaders like Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Susan B. Anthony spearheaded reform movements seeking equality for women. Drawing on memoirs, letters, and other documents of the period, this resource offers contemporary accounts from both observers and participants.
Updated 03/20/2015
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