March 11 - May 2, 1998. Emerging Voices: American Women Writers, 1650-1920. Curated by Iola Haverstick, Jean Ashton, Caroline Schimmel, & Mary Schlosser.
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March 11 - May 2, 1998
Emerging Voices: American Women Writers, 1650-1920
Curated by Iola Haverstick, Jean Ashton, Caroline Schimmel, & Mary Schlosser


A celebration of the unique voice of women writers in American literature, this major exhibition comprised some 100 works by 72 authors and covered the varied writing genres pursued by women authors. Juveniles and poetry were shown alongside anti-slavery pamphlets and travel journals, romantic novels, and history books. Many of the volumes displayed are rare, reflecting the fact that the earliest publications, from the 17th century, were often read to tatters. Some later works, such as those by the Grimke sisters and Emma Soutworth, were banned. Others, such as Charlotte Gilman's The Yellow Wall Paper (1892) and Harriet Jacob's Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl (1861), were only recently "discovered" by an appreciative feminist audience. Inscribed and association copies, as well as manuscripts, added immediacy to the display of first editions. The exhibition served as a window to the growth of spirit and stature that occurred as women gradually took their place as professional writers. A comprehensive catalogue is available.



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