Despite many faults, these supercharged, easy reading vignettes do sometimes manage to capture the indignation and irony in...

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WOMEN THEMSELVES

Despite many faults, these supercharged, easy reading vignettes do sometimes manage to capture the indignation and irony in the careers of exceptional American women. Abigail Adams' resentment of her husband's patronizing attitude towards her proposal for women's independence prefaces glimpses of the determination shared by such educated women as Emma Willard, Elizabeth Blackwell, Ernestine Rose and Carry Chapman Catt, but too many of the sketches are marred by irrelevant anecdotes, cliches (""Anne Bradstreet could no more help writing poems than a bird can help singing"") and lame judgments (did Victoria Woodhull's abortive campaign for president really make it ""easier for other women to do the same things later""?). The necessity of squeezing such different individuals as Nellie Bly, Lady Deborah Moody and Elizabeth Cady Stanton into the same format accounts for some of the difficulty -- still many of the choices are puzzling: where are Sojourner Truth, Jane Addams and Susan B. Anthony? The schoolgirl idealism of Hollinger's drawings reinforces the impression of superficiality, but there's some limited value here for readers with limited attention spans.

Pub Date: Nov. 26, 1973

ISBN: N/A

Page Count: 126

Publisher: Dodd, Mead

Review Posted Online: N/A

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Nov. 1, 1973