These fiery frenchified dames : women and political culture in early national Philadelphia /
Susan Branson.
Philadelphia : University of Pennsylvania Press, c2001.
218 p. : ill., map ; 23 cm.
0812236092 (acid-free paper)
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series title
Philadelphia : University of Pennsylvania Press, c2001.
0812236092 (acid-free paper)
catalogue key
Includes bibliographical references (p. [191]-208) and index.
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Full Text Reviews
Appeared in Choice on 2002-01-01:
Branson's examination of women in Philadelphia, the national capital between 1791 and 1800, illuminates the ways in which elite women participated in the political culture of the early republic. Unlike previous historians, Branson (Univ. of Texas, Dallas) argues that Revolutionary republican ideology allowed women to establish a public and overtly political place for themselves in the new nation. This public role provoked controversy, however, as male and female authors debated--in magazines, novels, pamphlets, plays, and poems--women's proper sphere. But as authors, as hosts of salons, as members of theater audiences, and as participants in civic events honoring American independence and the French Revolution, women contributed to the politics of patriotism and partisanship, especially the conflict between the Federalists and the Democratic Republicans. Although her study focuses on wealthy women with political connections, Branson reveals that a broad and contested conception of republican womanhood existed in the early national period. She demonstrates how women defied the ideological boundary between public and private spheres and suggests links between feminists of the Revolutionary generation and the early 19th century. This study contributes to both women's history and the history of American political culture. General collections and all academic levels. C. Faulkner SUNY College at Geneseo
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Choice, January 2002
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