The Gender of History
Men, Women and Historical Practice
By (author) Bonnie G. Smith
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Gender of History by Bonnie G. Smith
Book DescriptionIn this study of the gendering of the practices of history, Bonnie Smith resurrects the amateur history written by women in the 19th century - a type of history condemned as trivial by "scientific" male historians. She demonstrates the degree to which the profession defined itself in opposition to amateurism, femininity and alternative ways of writing history. The male historians of the archive and the seminar claimed to be searching for "genderless universal truth", which in reality according to Smith prioritized men's history over women's, white history over non-white, and the political history of Western governments over any other. Meanwhile, women amateurs wrote vivid histories of queens and accomplished women, of manners and mores, and of everyday life. Following the profession up to 1940, this text traces the emergence of a renewed interest in social and cultural history which had been demeaned in the 19th century, when professoinal historians viewed themselves as supermen who could see through the surface of events to invisible meanings and motives. But Smith doesn't let late 20th-century historians off the hook. She demonstrates how, even in the late 1990s, the practice of history is propelled by fantasies of power in which researchers imagine themselves as heroic rescuers of the inarticulate lower classes.
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Book DetailsISBN: 9780674002043
(235mm x 155mm x 23mm)
Imprint: Harvard University Press
Publisher: Harvard University Press
Publish Date: 1-Mar-2000
Country of Publication: United States
Books By Author Bonnie G. Smith
Women's History in Global Perspective, Paperback (September 2004)» View all books by Bonnie G. Smith
Addressing the comparative themes that the editors and contributors see as central to understanding women's history around the world, this book is the first in a major three-volume set. The collection is rounded out by essays on religion, race, ethnicity, and the different varieties of feminism.
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Author Biography - Bonnie G. Smith
Bonnie G. Smith is Professor of History at Rutgers University.
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