Living with History / Making Social Change

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Univ of North Carolina Press, Mar 31, 2009 - History - 248 pages
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This stimulating collection of essays in an autobiographical framework spans the period from 1963 to the present. It encompasses Gerda Lerner's theoretical writing and her organizational work in transforming the history profession and in establishing Women's History as a mainstream field.

Six of the twelve essays are new, written especially for this volume; the others have previously appeared in small journals or were originally presented as talks, and have been revised for this book. Several essays discuss feminist teaching and the problems of interpretation of autobiography and memoir for the reader and the historian. Lerner's reflections on feminism as a worldview, on the meaning of history writing, and on problems of aging lend this book unusual range and depth.

Together, the essays illuminate how thought and action connected in Lerner's life, how the life she led before she became an academic affected the questions she addressed as a historian, and how the social and political struggles in which she engaged informed her thinking. Written in lucid, accessible prose, the essays will appeal to the general reader as well as to students at all levels. Living with History / Making Social Change offers rare insight into the life work of one of the leading historians of the United States.

 

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Contents

Introduction
1
I REDEFINING THE PROFESSION OF HISTORY
21
II DOING HISTORY
71
III LIVING IN HISTORY
155
APPENDIX A Biographies of Midwestern Feminist Leaders
199
APPENDIX B Class Syllabus for Workshop on the Construction of Deviant OutGroups Chapter 7
208
APPENDIX C Group Exercises for Workshop on the Construction of Deviant OutGroups Chapter 7
215
Acknowledgments
218
Index
221
Copyright

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About the author (2009)

Gerda Lerner (1920-2013) was author or editor of twelve books in Women's History and one of the preeminent scholars responsible for the rediscovery of the field in the 1960s. A founding member of the National Organization for Women and one of the creators of Women's History Month, she was Robinson-Edwards Professor Emerita of History at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Her books include Fireweed: A Political Biography.

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