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Dorothea Dix : New England reformer / Thomas J. Brown.

By: Brown, Thomas J, 1960-.
Material type: TextTextSeries: Harvard historical studies: v. 127.Publisher: Cambridge, Mass. : Harvard University Press, 1998Description: xv, 422 p. : ill. ; 25 cm.ISBN: 0674214889 (alk. paper); 9780674214880 (alk. paper).Subject(s): Dix, Dorothea Lynde, 1802-1887 | Women social reformers -- United States -- Biography | Social reformers -- United States -- Biography | Unitarian women -- United States -- Biography | Unitarians -- United States -- Biography | Mentally ill -- Care -- United States -- History -- 19th centuryAdditional physical formats: Online version:: Dorothea Dix.DDC classification: 362.2/1/092 | B Other classification: 15.85 Also issued online.
Contents:
TABLE OF CONTENTS -- Almost alone in this wide world -- Fixed as fate -- Moral power -- I tell what I have seen! -- This mighty vortex of labor -- A happiness which goes with you -- The property of the people -- A national work -- The moral horizon of a Unitarian minister -- The American invader -- Our people need to suffer -- Downright madness -- A huge wild beast has consumed my life -- At last.
Review: "Dorothea Dix was the most politically engaged woman of her generation, which was itself a remarkable tapestry of activists. An influential lobbyist as well as a paragon of the doctrine of female benevolence, she vividly illustrated the complexities of the "separate spheres" of politics and femininity." "An activist who disdained the women's rights and antislavery movements, Dix, an old-line Whig, sought to promote national harmony and became the only New England social reformer to work successfully in the lower South right up to the eve of secession. When war broke out, she sought to achieve as Superintendent of Women Nurses the sort of cultural authority she had seen Florence Nightingale win in the same role during the Crimean War. The disastrous failure of one of the most widely admired heroines in the nation provides a dramatic measure of the transformations of northern values during the war."--BOOK JACKET.
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Item type Current location Call number Status Date due Barcode
Book University of Texas At Tyler
Stacks - 3rd Floor
HV28.D6 B75 1998 (Browse shelf) Available 0000001397959

Includes bibliographical references (p. 347-408) and index.

Also issued online.

"Dorothea Dix was the most politically engaged woman of her generation, which was itself a remarkable tapestry of activists. An influential lobbyist as well as a paragon of the doctrine of female benevolence, she vividly illustrated the complexities of the "separate spheres" of politics and femininity." "An activist who disdained the women's rights and antislavery movements, Dix, an old-line Whig, sought to promote national harmony and became the only New England social reformer to work successfully in the lower South right up to the eve of secession. When war broke out, she sought to achieve as Superintendent of Women Nurses the sort of cultural authority she had seen Florence Nightingale win in the same role during the Crimean War. The disastrous failure of one of the most widely admired heroines in the nation provides a dramatic measure of the transformations of northern values during the war."--BOOK JACKET.

TABLE OF CONTENTS -- Almost alone in this wide world -- Fixed as fate -- Moral power -- I tell what I have seen! -- This mighty vortex of labor -- A happiness which goes with you -- The property of the people -- A national work -- The moral horizon of a Unitarian minister -- The American invader -- Our people need to suffer -- Downright madness -- A huge wild beast has consumed my life -- At last.

Reviews provided by Syndetics

CHOICE Review

The most famous American women reformer of her time, Dorothea Dix was a monomaniac, possessed of a personality and manner that made friends sometimes prefer sinners to a saint. Nevertheless, Brown declines to psychologize. Grounded in a persuasively sober reading of Dix's voluminous correspondence and the papers of her friends, he rejects the interpretation of Dix's unhappy early life and English precedent found in David Gollaher's Voice for the Mad: The Life of Dorothea Dix (CH, Jan'96). Brown stresses instead her commitment to the moral imperatives of Unitarianism. His perspective is particularly helpful when he positions within antebellum sectional conflicts over federal land policy Dix's long campaign to get through Congress a land-grant bill to aid state mental hospitals. And he offers a sympathetic account of Dix's Civil War volunteer work, when her expectation of being the American Florence Nightingale came so sadly to naught. By what concatenation of context and personality Dix was so powerful a lobbyist remains to be fully explained, and Brown's study would have been improved by a summary section. But if one must choose just one biography, his book should have the edge. All levels. A. Graebner; College of St. Catherine

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