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The power of femininity in the New South : women's organizations and politics in North Carolina, 1880-1930 / Anastatia Sims.

By: Sims, Anastatia.
Material type: materialTypeLabelBookPublisher: Columbia, S.C. : University of South Carolina Press, c1997Description: xiv, 286 p. : ill. ; 24 cm.ISBN: 1570031789 (cloth); 9781570031786 (cloth).Subject(s): Women -- North Carolina -- Societies and clubs -- History | Women -- Political activity -- North Carolina -- History | Women social reformers -- North Carolina -- HistoryDDC classification: 305.4/06/0756 Other classification: 15.85 | 15.87 | 7,26
Contents:
"The foundation for a sisterhood": origins of women's activism -- "The sword of the spirit": crusades for temperance and moral reform -- "A power for good": the progressive impulse -- "Handmaidens of history": female patriots and the search for a usable past -- "The many public duties": woman suffrage and white supremacy.
Summary: The Power of Femininity in the New South demonstrates how the legendary strength and moral authority of the South's "steel magnolias" inspired turn-of-the-century women to move from the parlor to the political arena. With a comprehensive examination of the women's voluntary associations that proliferated in North Carolina between 1880 and 1930, Anastatia Sims chronicles the emergence of women - both black and white - in a political terrain torn between the tyranny of white supremacy and the promise of Progressive reform.Summary: She tells how organized women, as they called themselves, came to terms with a sacred cultural icon of the antebellum South - the complex, often contradictory ideal of southern femininity - and how they explored the ideal's possibilities, discovered its limitations, and ultimately transformed it by their own actions.
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Item type Current location Call number Status Date due Barcode
Book University of Texas At Tyler
Stacks - 3rd Floor
HQ1905.N8 S56 1997 (Browse shelf) Available 0000001309509

Includes bibliographical references (p. [258]-276) and index.

"The foundation for a sisterhood": origins of women's activism -- "The sword of the spirit": crusades for temperance and moral reform -- "A power for good": the progressive impulse -- "Handmaidens of history": female patriots and the search for a usable past -- "The many public duties": woman suffrage and white supremacy.

The Power of Femininity in the New South demonstrates how the legendary strength and moral authority of the South's "steel magnolias" inspired turn-of-the-century women to move from the parlor to the political arena. With a comprehensive examination of the women's voluntary associations that proliferated in North Carolina between 1880 and 1930, Anastatia Sims chronicles the emergence of women - both black and white - in a political terrain torn between the tyranny of white supremacy and the promise of Progressive reform.

She tells how organized women, as they called themselves, came to terms with a sacred cultural icon of the antebellum South - the complex, often contradictory ideal of southern femininity - and how they explored the ideal's possibilities, discovered its limitations, and ultimately transformed it by their own actions.

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CHOICE Review

Using the ideology of gender difference, talented American women at the turn of the century argued they had special competence for projects they defined as public housekeeping. Thereby they helped add welfare and cultural matters to the functions of government and empowered women without directly assaulting gender norms. That general outline, which Sims follows, is by now familiar. What she adds, for the case in North Carolina, is close attention to the imperatives of the southern lady and to race. Jim Crow rested in part on convictions about the powerlessness of white women and the promiscuity of black women. For white women's associations, the subversive element was claim to power, to be muted; for black women's associations, claim to respectability, to be insisted on. Sims focuses in turn on women's involvement in temperance and moral reform, in campaigns for better education and public health, in patriotic historical groups to glorify the past, and in the women's suffrage campaign. A conscientious researcher, Sims presents the material in clearly organized fashion. Upper-division undergraduates and above. A. Graebner; College of St. Catherine

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