Eve's Century: A Sourcebook of Writings on Women and Journalism, 1895-1918

Eve's Century: A Sourcebook of Writings on Women and Journalism, 1895-1918

Eve's Century: A Sourcebook of Writings on Women and Journalism, 1895-1918

Eve's Century: A Sourcebook of Writings on Women and Journalism, 1895-1918

Synopsis

This unique collection of extracts is taken from women's journals and magazines - both British and American - on the eve of the twentieth century. Arranged by subject, the collection focuses on what this pivotal moment represented for women and includes an introduction to women's journalism of the period. The rapidly changing conditions then surrounding a woman's world are illustrated here by sections on: * monarchy * women and war * colonial women * the politics of emancipation * and girlhood.

Excerpt

Answers - forecasts, fantasies and farewells - are illustrated here. Examples of British and American journalism for and about women, drawn from the period 1890 to 1918, allow us to situate ourselves as readers at the dawn of the twentieth century. We can read the past as though it were the future, revisiting the moment when our century was unveiled. With hindsight we can assess whether the distance women have travelled over the past hundred years was predictable, and gauge the continuities and discontinuities between women’s experiences today and those of the past.

Three areas of popular discussion occupy this anthology: prospecting for women’s future, appraising their past and exploring their present. The book opens with a chapter to set the scene, with material about when and where the twentieth century began, how the status of women was assessed at its outset, and how one significant women’s magazine, the Philadelphia based Ladies’ Home Journal, viewed its policy in relation to the confluence of the centuries. A record of the New Year’s Eve service at St. Paul’s Cathedral in London is a reminder of the Christian foundation of the calendar. Chapters two and three, ‘Futures’ and ‘Retrospects’, contain the Janus-faced core.

Configurations of the past and projections into the future were made relative to women’s immediate political situation at the moment of transition in 1901. The supporting chapters of the volume represent key aspects of this situation, grouped thematically as ‘Politics’, ‘Colonials’, ‘War’, ‘Girls’, ‘Christmas’ and ‘Advertising’. The chapters on war and girls contain material from later in the twentieth century to give some indication of how these issues developed. Together they afford today’s reader a glimpse of what the editor of the Lady’s Pictorial foresaw as he hailed the new century on 5 January 1901:

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