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By Marilyn French. From Eve to Dawn, A History of Women in the World, Volume III: Infernos and Paradises, The Triumph of Capitalism in the 19th Century. Writing about what she calls the “most cheering period in female history,” international best-selling author Marilyn French recounts how nineteenth century women living under imperialism, industrialization, and capitalism organized for their own education, a more equitable wage, and the vote. The Feminist Press at CUNY (2008), English, Paperback: 400 pages.
From Publishers Weekly
In the third volume of her remarkable four-volume survey, French (The Women's Room) illuminates how the Industrial Revolution worked against women over the course of the 19th century. French begins with imperialism in Africa, documenting the introduction of slavery and industrialization that would decimate traditional African society--including active and powerful positions traditionally held by women, who today are still threatened by the slave trade. In Europe and America, the Industrial Revolution offered for many family-bound young women a chance at freedom and camaraderie--but only through exploitative, dangerous work in poor conditions and for menial pay. Even then, the patriarchic society worked to keep women and children from any kind of economic or political freedom. At the same time, oppression only drove female workers closer together; with fellow suffering came organization, strength and ultimately a push for labor reform and women's rights. French's well-researched account spans the globe and offers fascinating insight and detail; unfortunately, it loses steam as it progresses, cruising through the labor and women's rights movements in typical textbook fashion.
About the Author
Marilyn French (1929- ) was born in New York. She received her PhD from Harvard and taught English at Hofstra, Harvard, and Holy Cross College. She is best known for her novels, The Women's Room and In the Name of Friendship, and her non-fiction works, including Beyond Power, The War against Women and her memoir, A Season in Hell. Margaret Atwood's most popular works include The Handmaid's Tale (1983) and The Blind Assassin (2000). She was born in Ottawa, Ontario in 1939 and received her undergraduate degree from Victoria University, along with a master's degree from Radcliffe College. She currently lives in Toronto with her husband, novelist Graeme Gibson.