PETTICOAT REBEL by Mary Stetson Clarke


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While the Americans are battling against the British, Dacie Tybbot is carrying on her own private war for the education of women. The 16-year-old daughter of well-to-do sea-faring family in Massachusetts, Dacie wants instruction in the same subjects her brothers are learning, but the only school available to her specializes in ""ladylike arts"" such as paper cut-outs. After she graduates from this horror she begins to use her free time to teach some Jamaicans whom her father has freed from slavery, and then manages to talk her way into opening a parish school for girls. In spite of the theme, the actual descriptions of Colonial education are slight. Among the many novels with a Revolutionary setting published during the last two reasons, too few have been slanted toward the interests of girls. There is more about the social and economic repercussions of the Revolution than there is about its political basis. The background on the slave trade is interesting, but the liberal reactions of Dacie and her family toward the status of Negroes seem to belong more to the mid-Twentieth Century than the Colonial period. Dacie may not be the most memorable fictional heroine of this era, but girls will sympathize with her personal revolution.

Publisher: Viking