Jane Addams and the Dream of American Democracy: A Life

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The founder of the famed Chicago institution Hull House and first American woman to win the Nobel Peace Prize has for too long been misunderstood as a mere "do-gooder," argues Jean Bethke Elshtain in this eagerly anticipated new interpretation of the life and work of Jane Addams. Like her biographer, Addams (1860-1935) was a quintessential "public intellectual." Under her hand, Hull House became a cultural and intellectual center, a place where beauty was served, where University of Chicago professors lectured and debate and discussion filled the auditorium.Elshtain examines Addams's life chronologically and thematically, exploring Addams's embrace of "social feminism" and her challenge to the usual cleavage between "conservative" and "liberal"-themes Elshtain brilliantly explores in her own writings. Jane Addams and the Dream of American Democracy is a rich and revealing portrait of one of the most extraordinary figures in American history.

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A perspicuous charting of the pilgrim's progress that was Jane Addams's hopeful, generous life.Social activists get buffeted around more than most after they die both by their detractors and their ... Read full review

Jane Addams and the dream of American democracy: a life

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Jane Addams, the founder of Hull House and winner of the Nobel Peace Prize for her work in the international peace movement, inspired both great adoration and great censure in her day. Elshtain ... Read full review


The Snare of Preparation
One Pilgrims Progress
Imagining HullHouse

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About the author (2002)

Jean Bethke Elshtain is the Laura Spelman Rockefeller Professor of Social and Political Ethics at the University of Chicago. Among her many books are "Just War against Terror" and "Women and War".

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