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Palgrave Studies in the History of Social Movements
cover

The Woman as Slave in Nineteenth-Century American Social Movements

Authors: Stevenson, Ana

  • Offers the first detailed analysis of the woman-slave analogy, a controversial rhetorical device used extensively among a range of social reformers in the United States during the long nineteenth century
  • Explores how the woman-slave analogy was used by supporters and detractors in the antislavery, women’s rights, dress reform, suffrage, labour and anti-vice movements
  • Contributes to research on gender, race, class, chattel slavery and social movements, as well as the cultural and intellectual history of feminism 
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Buy this book

eBook £43.99
price for United Kingdom (gross)
  • The eBook version of this title will be available soon
  • Due: November 27, 2019
  • ISBN 978-3-030-24467-5
  • Digitally watermarked, DRM-free
  • Included format:
  • ebooks can be used on all reading devices
Hardcover £69.99
price for United Kingdom (gross)
  • Due: November 27, 2019
  • ISBN 978-3-030-24466-8
  • Free shipping for individuals worldwide
About this book

This book is the first to develop a history of the analogy between woman and slave, charting its changing meanings and enduring implications across the social movements of the long nineteenth century. Looking beyond its foundations in the antislavery and women’s rights movements, this book examines the influence of the woman-slave analogy in popular culture along with its use across the dress reform, labor, suffrage, free love, racial uplift, and anti-vice movements. At once provocative and commonplace, the woman-slave analogy was used to exceptionally varied ends in the era of chattel slavery and slave emancipation. Yet, as this book reveals, a more diverse assembly of reformers both accepted and embraced a woman-as-slave worldview than has previously been appreciated. One of the most significant yet controversial rhetorical strategies in the history of feminism, the legacy of the woman-slave analogy continues to underpin the debates that shape feminist theory today.

About the authors

Ana Stevenson is a Postdoctoral Research Fellow in the International Studies Group at the University of the Free State, South Africa. Her research explores the history of women in transnational social movements, across the United States, Australia, and South Africa.

Reviews

“Examining the many icons and narratives that comprised the ‘woman-slave analogy,’ Ana Stevenson reveals how nineteenth-century white women and African Americans found a common nexus in sensational depictions of physical bondage even as they deployed these for often competing purposes. Of particular interest is her ground-breaking analysis of women’s fashions and dress reform as seen through the prism of the woman-slave analogy. Concluding with a provocative analysis of anti-lynching, woman suffrage, and racial uplift movements in the twentieth century, Stevenson shows the connections and disruptions among a wide sweep of American reform rhetoric.” (Julie Husband, University of Northern Iowa, USA)

“With skillful depth, Ana Stevenson unpacks the long and fascinating American history of rhetorical comparisons between women and slaves. This analogy was pervasive in the nineteenth century, as anyone with knowledge of the period will be aware. Yet Stevenson shows is that it was far more varied than previously imagined – used by black and white commentators of every political stripe to debate women’s subjugation, marital and sexual relations, fashion and dress reform, women’s wage work, and voting rights. Tracing the complex origins, shifting usage, and ambiguous political consequences of comparing different forms of oppression, this fine book offers both a novel reading of nineteenth-century U.S. history, and salutary lessons for theorists of intersectionality in the modern day.” (Frances M. Clarke, The University of Sydney, Australia)

Buy this book

eBook £43.99
price for United Kingdom (gross)
  • The eBook version of this title will be available soon
  • Due: November 27, 2019
  • ISBN 978-3-030-24467-5
  • Digitally watermarked, DRM-free
  • Included format:
  • ebooks can be used on all reading devices
Hardcover £69.99
price for United Kingdom (gross)
  • Due: November 27, 2019
  • ISBN 978-3-030-24466-8
  • Free shipping for individuals worldwide

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Bibliographic Information

Bibliographic Information
Book Title
The Woman as Slave in Nineteenth-Century American Social Movements
Authors
Series Title
Palgrave Studies in the History of Social Movements
Copyright
2019
Publisher
Palgrave Macmillan
Copyright Holder
The Editor(s) (if applicable) and The Author(s)
eBook ISBN
978-3-030-24467-5
DOI
10.1007/978-3-030-24467-5
Hardcover ISBN
978-3-030-24466-8
Edition Number
1
Number of Pages
V, 379
Number of Illustrations
4 b/w illustrations, 12 illustrations in colour
Topics