A feminist manifesto: wrapping up Work A Story of Experience (part two)

“…Work is an expression of Alcott’s feminist principles and a major effort toward synthesizing in popular, readable form the broad set of beliefs encompassing family, education, suffrage, labor and the moral reform of social life that defined feminist ideology in the nineteenth century.” (pg. 191 from Critical Essays on Louisa May Alcott edited by Madeleine …

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A tale of two books: wrapping up Work A Story of Experience (part one)

Several months ago I started reading Work: A Story of Experience, one of Louisa’s few adult novels. The story, like Little Women, is a thinly disguised, romanticized yet gritty autobiography coupled with wishes Louisa might have had regarding the course of her life. First, my impressions In this first of three planned posts on this …

Work: Louisa May Alcott writes about bucking the system

What was it like to be a nineteenth century woman who bucked the system? Suppose she didn’t want to marry right away but instead, preferred to seek independence and meaning through work? What if her world didn’t revolve around a man, but herself? How would she fare? Does the answer lie in Jo March? At …