Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Susan B. Anthony (Magill's Literary Annual 1982)
The names of Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Susan B. Anthony are familiar to anyone interested in the history of women’s rights in America, but for most people these two distinguished women have remained rather shadowy figures. Ellen DuBois’ work brings them vividly to life through their own public and private writings and through others’ reflections about them. In three introductory chapters, DuBois, who is Associate Professor of History and American Studies at the State University of New York at Buffalo and the author of a study of post-Civil War feminism, sets the work of Stanton and Anthony in the context of their own lives and the significant movements of the second half of the nineteenth century. She treats their careers in three phases. The first covers 1815 to 1861, the period of the development of their personal philosophies and the alliance of feminists and abolitionists. The second includes the years 1861 to 1873, the era of struggle for suffrage for women and blacks and the movement toward national rather than state action on women’s issues. The third runs from the founding of the Women’s Christian Temperance Union in 1874 to the death of Anthony in 1906, a time of conservative tendencies which saw the burgeoning of women’s organizations and the narrowing of feminist goals from widespread social change to suffrage as an end in itself.
(The entire section is 2281 words.)
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