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Women’s Studies

Women’s Studies Book List

Cover of 'Nomadic Voices of Exile'

Nomadic Voices of Exile
Feminine Identity in the Francophone Literature of the Maghreb
By Valérie K. Orlando

Contemporary French writing on the Maghreb—that part of Africa above the Sahara—is truly postmodern in scope, the rich product of multifaceted histories promoting the blending of two worlds, two identities, two cultures, and two languages. Nomadic Voices of Exile demonstrates how that postmodern sentiment has altered perceptions concerning Maghrebian feminine identity since the end of the French-colonial era.

Cover of 'Dangerous Dames'

Dangerous Dames
Women and Representation in Film Noir and the Weimar Street Film
By Jans B. Wager

Both film noir and the Weimar street film hold a continuing fascination for film spectators and film theorists alike. The female characters, especially the alluring femmes fatales, remain a focus for critical and popular attention. In the tradition of such attention, Dangerous Dames focuses on the femme fatale and her antithesis, the femme attrapée.

Cover of 'Virginia Woolf'

Virginia Woolf
Reading the Renaissance
Edited by Sally Greene

The story of “Shakespeare’s sister” that Virginia Woolf tells in A Room of One’s Own has sparked interest in the question of the place of the woman writer in the Renaissance. By now, the process of recovering lost voices of early modern women is well under way. But Woolf’s engagement with the Renaissance went deeper than that question indicates, as important as it was.

Cover of 'A Woman of the Times'

A Woman of the Times
Journalism, Feminism, and the Career of Charlotte Curtis
By Marilyn S. Greenwald
· Foreword by Liz Smith

How a woman reporter from Columbus, Ohio, broke into the ranks of the male-dominated upper echelon at the New York Times.

Cover of 'Ruskin’s Mythic Queen'

Ruskin’s Mythic Queen
Gender Subversion in Victorian Culture
By Sharon Aronofsky Weltman

John Ruskin's prominence as the author of “Of Queen's Gardens,” his principal statement of Victorian gender opposition, makes him an ideal example for analyzing the power of mythic discourse to undermine gender division. Here, Ruskin creates a vision of feminine authority that draws simultaneously upon several sources (including the goddess Athena and Queen Victoria herself) to empower women in a worldwide arena redefined as a broader version of their domestic realm.

Cover of 'Midwives of the Revolution'

Midwives of the Revolution
Female Bolsheviks and Women Workers in 1917
By Jane McDermid and Anna Hillyar

The Bolshevik seizure of power in 1917 and the ensuing communist regime have often been portrayed as a man’s revolution, with women as bystanders or even victims. Midwives of the Revolution examines the powerful contribution made by women to the overthrow of tsarism in 1917 and their importance in the formative years of communism in Russia.

Rated “Outstanding” by University Press Books Committee
Cover of 'Dared & Done'

Dared & Done
The Marriage of Elizabeth Barrett and Robert Browning
By Julia Markus

Based extensively on their writings and letters to each other, this chronicle of Elizabeth Barrett's and Robert Browning's life together stands in bold relief against the backdrop of their Victorian world. Their passionate partnership overcame any number of obstacles — Elizabeth's role in her father's family; her illness; her Creole background; Robert's tentative career — to culminate in a marriage of mutual devotion.

Cover of 'The  Sturdy Oak'

The Sturdy Oak
A Composite Novel of American Politics
Edited by Elizabeth Jordan
· Introduction by Ida H. Washington

In the spring of 1916, as the workers for woman suffrage were laying plans for another attack on the bastions of male supremacy, the idea for The Sturdy Oak was born. Based on the rules of an old parlor game, wherein one person begins a narrative, another continues it, and another follows, this collaborative effort by the leading writers of the day, such as Fannie Hurst, Dorothy Canfield, and Kathleen Norris, is a satiric look at the gender roles of the time.

Cover of 'Arrows of Longing'

Arrows of Longing
The Correspondence between Anaïs Nin and Felix Pollak, 1952–1976
By Gregory H. Mason

In the winter of 1951-52, Anaïs Nin was a writer in despair. More than a dozen publishing houses had rejected her new novel, A Spy in the House of Love, and Nin became desperate for literary acceptance. Encouragement came from an unexpected source. Felix Pollak, an Austrian emigré and Rare Book Librarian at Northwestern University, had been entrusted with the task of acquiring some of Nin's manuscripts for the library.

Cover of 'Ancient Sisterhood'

Ancient Sisterhood
The Lost Traditions of Hagar and Sarah
By Savina J. Teubal

In this fascinating piece of scholarly detective work, biblical scholar Savina J. Teubal peels away millenia of patriarchal distortion to reveal the lost tradition of biblical matriarchs. In Ancient Sisterhood: The Lost Traditions of Hagar and Sarah (originally published as Hagar the Egyptian), she shows that Hagar, the mother of Ishmael, was actually lady-in-waiting to the priestess Sarah and participated in an ancient Near Eastern custom of surrogate motherhood.

Cover of 'Resisting Regionalism'

Resisting Regionalism
Gender And Naturalism In American Fiction, 1885-1915
By Donna Campbell

When James Lane Allen defined the “Feminine Principle” and the “Masculine Principle” in American fiction for the Atlantic Monthly in 1897, he in effect described local color fiction and naturalism, two branches of realism often regarded as bearing little relationship to each other.

Cover of 'Gender Violence and the Press'

Gender Violence and the Press
The St. Kizito Story
By H. Leslie Steeves

On the night of Saturday, July 13, 1991, a mob of male students at the St. Kizito Mixed Secondary School in Meru, Kenya, attacked their female classmates in a dormitory. Nineteen schoolgirls were killed in the melee and more than 70 were raped or gang raped. The explanations in the press for the attack included a rebellion by male students over administrative mismanagement, academic stress, cultural norms for the Meru ethnic group, and victim characteristics (as assumed in rape myths).

Cover of 'Recollections of Anaïs Nin'

Recollections of Anaïs Nin
By Her Contemporaries
Edited by Benjamin Franklin V

Recollections of Anaïs Nin presents Nin through the eyes of twenty-six people who knew her. She is the unconventional, distant aunt; the thoughtful friend; the owner of a strangely disarming voice; the author eager for attention yet hypersensitive to criticism; the generous advisor to a literary magazine; the adulteress; the beautiful septuagenarian; the recommender of books—the contributors elaborate on thses and many other perceptions of Nin.

Cover of 'Kampala Women Getting By'

Kampala Women Getting By
Wellbeing in the Time of AIDS
By Sandra Wallman

What do ordinary women in an African city do in the face of “serious enough” infections in themselves and signs of acute illness in their young children? How do they manage? What does it take to get by? How do they maintain the wellbeing of the household in a setting without what would be considered as basic health provision in an American or European city? Professor Wallman focuses on women in a densely-populated part of Kampala called Kamwokya.

Cover of 'Eight Prison Camps'

Eight Prison Camps
A Dutch Family in Japanese Java
By Dieuwke Wendelaar Bonga

Eldest daughter of eight children, the author grew up in Surakarta, Java, in what is now Indonesia. In the months following the bombing of Pearl Harbor, however, Dutch nationals were rounded up by Japanese soldiers and put in internment camps. Her father and brother were sent to separate men’s camps, leaving the author, her mother, and the five younger children in the women’s camp.