A Woman's Thoughts about Women

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Cambridge University Press, Aug 19, 2010 - History - 362 pages
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Dinah Craik (1826-1887) was a prolific writer of fiction, poetry and essays. She was best known for her novels, which appropriated well-worked narratives of individuals triumphing over adversity through hard work and moral integrity against a backdrop of industrialisation and the ascent of the middle classes. The most successful, John Halifax, Gentleman, tells the tale of a boy who works his way out of poverty. Craik herself was familiar with hardship: her father Thomas Mulock, a nonconformist minister, had spent periods confined to a lunatic asylum, and abandoned his children after his wife's death in 1854. In this work (originally published serially in Chambers's Journal of Popular Literature, Science and Arts), Craik provided support and advice for single women like herself. She was highly critical of learned helplessness and advocated independence and cross-class sympathy, believing women should 'lead active, intelligent, industrious lives: lives complete in themselves'.
 

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Contents

CHAP PAGE 1 SOMETHING TO DO
1
SELFDEPENDENCE
22
FEMALE PROFESSIONS
41
FEMALE HANDICRAFTS
65
FEMALE SERVANTS
90
THE MISTRESS OF A FAMILY
122
FEMALE FRIENDSHIPS
165
GOSSIP
189
WOMEN OF THE WORLD
219
HAPPY AND UNHAPPY WOMEN
254
LOST WOMEN
285
WOMEN GROWING OLD
315
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