Women Out of Bounds

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9780786710515: Women Out of Bounds

From Artemisia of Halicarnassus—a fifth century (b.c.) merchant, pirate, and naval commander—to the freelance World War I correspondent Lady Sarah Wilson, this engaging and entertaining social history chronicles the uncommon achievements of more than 100 remarkable women who over the past twenty-five centuries flouted cultural conventions. Raising the eyebrows of their ancient, medieval, seventeenth-century, Victorian, or American contemporaries, these women defied the expectations of their times and independently molded their own dynamic, often highly idiosyncratic lives. With illustrations and colorful, historically documented, and long-ignored or half-forgotten stories of women pirates, bone-setters, gold prospectors, secret agents, soldiers-in-disguise, and human cannonballs—not to mention that mistress of reinvention Lola Montez or Victoria Woodhull, the stockbroker who ran for president of the United States, or the outlaw Belle Starr, or America’s first self-made woman millionaire, Sarah Breedlove Walker—this book applauds their accomplishments, their daring, their defiance, their responses to necessity, their names.

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Although many view the concept of the career woman as a relatively contemporary phenomenon, social historian Robinson has tracked the remarkable lives of more than 100 women who pursued a variety of occupations and professions before it was socially acceptable to do so. Defying the societal conventions and familial expectations of many different cultures and eras, these women all had one thing in common; they led independent lives before it was generally acceptable to do so. Arranging these brief sketches in rough chronological order, the author provides a guided tour of self-sustaining females who lived in antiquity, the Middle Ages, the seventeenth century, and the Victorian age. The character traits, class status, and personal circumstances of these dynamic women are also examined in relation to the times and places in which they lived and worked. This delightful slice of women's history is brimming with vibrant real-life characters boasting an astonishing variety of unique careers. Margaret Flanagan
Copyright American Library Association. All rights reserved

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