From Eve to Dawn: A History of Women Volume 1: Origins

Marilyn French (Author) Margaret Atwood (Foreword by)
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The first volume of the New York Times-bestselling author's monumental and unprecedented history: "Consistently thought-provoking" (The New York Review of Books).

The internationally celebrated author of The Women's Room, Marilyn French spent over fifteen years with a team of researchers and prominent historians examining women's lives and activities in civilizations and societies spanning the ages.

Beginning in prehistory, Origins moves on to examine women's lives in ancient Egypt, China, India, Peru, Mexico, Greece, and Rome. In her reconstruction of wars, laws, and other activities affecting both women and men, French also traces the worldviews underpinning them. She also depicts how women's relationship to Judaism, Christianity, and Islam changed for good and bad over the centuries.

"She backs up even her more controversial theories with an impressive accumulation of academically accepted historical, anthropological and sociological sources . . . Written in concise, understated language, this is a significant addition to literature on women's studies and history." --Publishers Weekly

Product Details

Feminist Press
Publish Date
April 01, 2008
6.06 X 0.94 X 8.89 inches | 1.08 pounds
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About the Author

Marilyn French (1929-2009) 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.


"As a reference work it's invaluable: the bibliographies alone are worth the price. And as a warning about the appalling extremes of human behavior and male weirdness, it's indispensable." --Margaret Atwood

"[French] draws on a vast body of research and help from consultants in all sorts of fields, to open out areas that are rarely accessible." --The Guardian

"One day, no history will be written without the female half of the world. Until then, we have the unique scholarship of Marilyn French's From Eve to Dawn. No home or library or hopeful reader should be without it." --Gloria Steinem

"It must be said that the enterprise is on a heroic scale, and consistently thought-provoking." --The New York Review of Books

"In short, French does an incredible job relating the history of the sex and the varied roles women have played--willingly or unwillingly--around the globe." --ForeWord

"Readers can profit greatly from her brisk and passionate prose." --Ms. magazine

"High school through college students and general readers will gain in-depth knowledge and insight about the history of women. . . . An invaluable resource." --MultiCultural Review

"Written in concise, understated language, this is a significant addition to literature on women's studies and history." --Publishers Weekly