NotesFAQContact Us
Search Tips
Peer reviewed Peer reviewed
Direct linkDirect link
ERIC Number: EJ813347
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2007-May
Pages: 24
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: N/A
ISSN: ISSN-0018-2680
Job Market or Marriage Market? Life Choices for Southern Women Educated at Northern Colleges, 1875-1915
Johnson, Joan Marie
History of Education Quarterly, v47 n2 p149-172 May 2007
At the turn of the century approximately a thousand white Southern women braved the consternation of friends and sometimes family, and traveled hundreds of miles to attend the best Northern women's colleges for an education unavailable to them in the South. For many, the experience was revolutionary: they developed self-confidence, independence, and intellectual curiosity. Being at college and in the North challenged their gender ideology and helped them reconceptualize what a white Southern woman could be and do. A collective biography of Southerners at Vassar, Mount Holyoke, Bryn Mawr, Wellesley, and Smith colleges is important because they disproportionately formed an elite female leadership in the New South and forged new roles for women, especially in social reform and education. They melded together new possibilities for independence and leadership learned in the North with traditional Southern gender roles, which stressed dependence and charm for women. Southern women were held to stricter standards of domesticity and dependency than in the North because the intertwined hierarchy of race, gender, and class in the South demanded that no one step out of his or her place. White men even defended the lynching of African-American men in the name of chivalry, under the spurious claims of the black rape of white women. This article addresses the unique experiences of these influential students, heretofore neglected by historians of women's higher education. (Contains 82 footnotes.)
Blackwell Publishing. 350 Main Street, Malden, MA 02148. Tel: 800-835-6770; Tel: 781-388-8599; Fax: 781-388-8232; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A