The Crimes of Womanhood: Defining Femininity in a Court of Law (Paperback)
  • The Crimes of Womanhood: Defining Femininity in a Court of Law (Paperback)
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The Crimes of Womanhood: Defining Femininity in a Court of Law (Paperback)

(author)
£20.99
Paperback 200 Pages / Published: 11/12/2014
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Cultural views of femininity exerted a powerful influence on the courtroom arguments used to defend or condemn notable women on trial in nineteenth-century and early-twentieth-century America. A. Cheree Carlson analyzes the colorful rhetorical strategies employed by lawyers and reporters in the trials of several women of varying historical stature, from the insanity trials of Mary Todd Lincoln and Lizzie Borden's trial for the brutal slaying of her father and stepmother, to lesser-known trials involving insanity, infidelity, murder, abortion, and interracial marriage. Carlson reveals clearly just how narrow was the line that women had to walk, since the same womanly virtues that were expected of them--passivity, frailty, and purity--could be turned against them at any time. With gripping retellings and incisive analysis, this book will appeal to historians, rhetoricians, feminist researchers, and anyone who enjoys courtroom drama.

Publisher: University of Illinois Press
ISBN: 9780252080029
Number of pages: 200
Weight: 318 g
Dimensions: 229 x 152 x 15 mm


MEDIA REVIEWS

"[An] innovative study. . . . [Carlson's] careful analysis of the impact of these gendered narratives on the outcome of the cases provides a valuable contribution to the discussion of why law fails to embody the gender neutrality it often idealizes. Recommended."--Choice


"Engaging, informative, and concise accounts of these complicated trials."--H-Law
"A provocative, well-written, and illuminating work."--The Journal of American History

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