History of Women in the West, Volume IV: Emerging Feminism from Revolution to World War (Revised) (Revised)

Georges Duby (Editor) Genevieve Fraisse (Editor)
& 1 more


In the words of the general editors, A History of Women seeks "to understand women's place in society, their condition, the roles they played and the powers they possessed, their silence, their speech, and their deeds. It is the variety of the representations of women--as gods, Madonnas, witches, and so on--that we hope to capture, in its permanence as well as its many transformations." Informed by the work of seventy-five distinguished historians, this five-volume series sets before us an engaging, panoramic chronicle that extends from antiquity to the present day. The inaugural volume brings women from the margins of ancient history into the fore. The authors' deft analysis offers fresh insight into more than twenty centuries of Greek and Roman history and encompasses a landscape that stretches from the North Sea to the Mediterranean and from the Pillars of Hercules to the banks of the Indus. In the minds of the ancients, the roles for which women were destined were silent ones: motherhood and homemaking, tasks relegated to obscurity by scribes who focused exclusively on the deeds of men. Even the census neglected women; in Rome, only heiresses were counted. But the dearth of information about women in official archives and the near absence of writing by women from this era stand in stark contrast to the astonishing profusion of texts and images created by men that are concerned with women and gender. The number of women's representations is astonishing. The authors draw upon sources ranging from gravestones to floor plans, from stele inscriptions to papyrus rolls, from vase paintings to Greek and Roman literary works, to illustrate how representations of women evolved during thisage. They journey into the minds of men--from the Greeks imagining their goddesses to the Church Fathers inventing the figure of the martyred female saint--and bring to light an imaginative history of women and of the relations between the sexes. The authors explore select aspects o

Product Details

Belknap Press
Publish Date
July 21, 1998
6.23 X 1.49 X 9.22 inches | 1.86 pounds
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About the Author

Georges Duby, a member of the Académie Française, is Professor of Medieval History at the Collège de France.
Geneviève Fraisse is Research Associate in Philosophy, Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, Paris.
Arthur Goldhammer is Senior Affiliate of the Center for European Studies at Harvard University.


A History of Women in the West is ambitious in conception and impressive in realization.--Jessica Mann "Literary Review "
The fourth volume in the ambitious project of the French historians Duby and Perrot to present the history of women from the antiquities till now proves that strong ambitions are worth pursuing. After antiquity, the Middle Ages, and the early modern period, this fourth volume deals with the nineteenth century. The final volume about the twentieth century is already published and with that a true masterpiece is done... This volume is fascinating, mainly because it gives such an extensive and comprehensive overview of the discourses of femininity and gender, and of all the arguments which have been used in relation to these themes in everyday knowledge, public debates, and social policies.--Trudie Knijn "Contemporary Sociology "
A History of Women in the West is a collection of thoughtful essays by leading European and American scholars... After so many centuries of confinement, drudgery, anonymity and speculation about whether or not women qualify as human, how fine to come to Volume IV and such bracing chapters as 'Daughters of Liberty and Revolutionary Citizens' and 'Stepping Out!'--Elizabeth J. Sherman "Washington Times "