Autobiography | Critical Essay by Lillian Schlissel

This literature criticism consists of approximately 22 pages of analysis & critique of Autobiography.
This section contains 6,408 words
(approx. 22 pages at 300 words per page)
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Critical Essay by Lillian Schlissel

SOURCE: Introduction to Women's Diaries of the Westward Journey, Schocken Books, 1982, pp. 10-18

In the following excerpt, Schlissel discusses the historical relevance of diaries written by nineteenth-century women pioneers, examining in particular what the diaries reveal about frontier gender roles.

For the women who traveled to the western territories in the nineteenth century, the journey brought sharp dislocations. Traditional work patterns were daily overturned with women called upon to do what they had long regarded as "means' work." The consequence was that gender role, class orientation, even self-evaluation, became troubled areas to many women, but particularly to those women who came to the Overland Trail and the frontier experience in their middle years.

In addition, the great migration disrupted those "long-lived, intimate, loving friendship[s]" which women had formed with other women in the settled communities of the East.1 The...

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This section contains 6,408 words
(approx. 22 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Critical Essay by Lillian Schlissel
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