First published in 1981, this look at the lives of 11 exceptional women—including George Eliot, Florence Nightingale, Harriet Beecher Stowe, and the Brontës—serves to illuminate much about the lot of all women in the 19th century.Elizabeth Longford has chosen a group of Victorian women who, in their actions or writing, challenged the repressive rules of established society. They include Charlotte, Emily, and Anne Brontë, whose cloistered lives were illuminated by the vividness of their creative genius; Josephine Butler, who brought about the end of the infamous Contagious Diseases Acts; Annie Besant, who campaigned vigorously for the rights of women subject to unreasonable husbands or harsh employers; Harriet Beecher Stowe, whose novel Uncle Tom’s Cabin brought the cruelties of slavery to the world’s attention; and James Barry, born Margaret Bulkley, medical reformer and arguably the first British female to qualify as a suregon. This is a fascinating account of a crucial period of struggle for women’s rights and of some of the remarkable personalities who took part.
Reviews"She remains easily the best writer in what is predominantly a literary family." —The New York Times on Elizabeth Longford
Author BiographyElizabeth Longford (1906–2002) was also the author of All in the Family, Jameson's Raid, The Pebbled Shore, A Pilgrimage of Passion, Points for Parents, Queen Victoria, and Victoria R.I., for which she won the James Tait Black memorial prize.