Writing Out My Heart: Selections from the Journal of Frances E. Willard 1855-96

Gifford, Carolyn de Swarte (ed.)

Published by University of Illinois Press, 1995
ISBN 10: 0252021398 / ISBN 13: 9780252021398
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Fine hardcover in Fine jacket. Signed and inscribed by editor with her first name "Carolyn." First Edition, first printing. Bookseller Inventory #

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Synopsis: The journal of Frances E. Willard had been hidden away in a cupboard at the national headquarters of the Woman's Christian Temperance Union, and its importance eluded Willard's biographers. Writing Out My Heart publishes for the first time substantial portions of the forty-nine volumes rediscovered in 1982, opening a window on the remarkable inner life of this great public figure and casting her in a new light. No other female political leader of the period left a private record like this. Written during her teens, twenties, and fifties, the journal documents the creation of Frances Willard's self. At the same time, it often reads like a good novel. It stands as one of the most explicit and painful records in the nineteenth century of one woman's coming to terms with her love for women in a heterosexual world. Other sections reveal what impelled Willard to reform - the nature and depth of the religious dimension of her life - a dimension not yet adequately explored by any biographer. Here we see her growing commitment to the cause of woman. The volumes written in her late middle age give insight into the years when, world famous, she was part of the transatlantic network of reform, battling ill health, dealing with controversy in the WCTU, and grieving for her mother, a lifelong figure of emotional support. This finale concludes one of the most fascinating of the journal's themes: the nineteenth-century confrontation with sickness and death.

From Library Journal: Educator, orator, feminist, and longtime president of the Women's Christian Temperance Union, Willard (1839-98) was an international representative of a prominent strand of Protestant American activism. This landmark volume is the first publication of selections from her massive journals, which she kept mostly as a young woman. Entries show the development of her religious and reform commitments, her search for suitable outlets for her ambition, and her struggles to reconcile conflicting demands of family, society, and self. Also revealed is her passionate love for other women, which she understood in terms that will seem both familiar and unfamiliar to contemporary readers. Editor Gifford introduces each section, provides an extensive bibliography, and identifies most names and quotations in Willard's text. This is an essential purchase for any academic library supporting courses in U.S. history and women's studies and will also be of interest to large public libraries with collections in these fields.
Carolynne Myall, Eastern Washington Univ. Libs., Cheney
Copyright 1995 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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Title: Writing Out My Heart: Selections from the ...
Publisher: University of Illinois Press
Publication Date: 1995
Binding: Hardcover
Book Condition: Fine
Edition: 1st Edition

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Frances Elizabeth Willard
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Willard, Frances E., edited by Carolyn De Swarte Gifford
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Book Description University of Illinois Press, Urbana, 1995. Hardcover. xxix, 474p., preface, introductions, essay on the source, bibliography, index, illustrations, very good first edition in cloth boards and unclipped dj. Women in American history. In publishing substantial portions of Willard's rediscovered diaries, the editor includes "one of the most explicit and painful records in the nineteenth century of one woman's coming to terms with her love for women in a heterosexual world." - dj. Seller Inventory # 21407

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