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Her Life Historical: Exemplarity and Female Saints Lives in Late Medieval England (review)

Her Life Historical: Exemplarity and Female Saints Lives in Late Medieval England (review) Reviews 463 In its fourth and fi nal section, Clio’s Daughters looks at historical writ- ing in less conventional venues. Isabella Bird’s late-nineteenth-century travel narrative of her journey through the Yangtze Valley becomes “an attempt to write a defi nitive history of . . . Britain’s imperial desire for China, and a record of native resistance to the colonizing impulse of European powers” (215). Alexis Easley looks at how female participants in the architectural re- form movements of the 1830s and the historic preservation movements of the 1890s “provided new sites of agency and infused domestic management with new political and social meanings” (236), thereby bridging the gap be- tween the public (i.e., male) and private (female) spheres. Finally, Nanette Thrush shows how upper-class Victorian women used historical costumes to project images that not only displayed but enhanced their power and in- fl uence. The attempt of Clio’s Daughters to look both at women as historical fi g- ures and as historical writers inevitably creates some confusion. The primary emphasis is on the latter, and it may have been preferable to concentrate on that theme exclusively. Taken as a collection, the essays suffer from some schizophrenia about how aggressively http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Biography University of Hawai'I Press

Her Life Historical: Exemplarity and Female Saints Lives in Late Medieval England (review)

Biography , Volume 31 (3) – Nov 21, 2008

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Publisher
University of Hawai'I Press
Copyright
Copyright © 2008 Biographical Research Center.
ISSN
0162-4962
eISSN
1529-1456

Abstract

Reviews 463 In its fourth and fi nal section, Clio’s Daughters looks at historical writ- ing in less conventional venues. Isabella Bird’s late-nineteenth-century travel narrative of her journey through the Yangtze Valley becomes “an attempt to write a defi nitive history of . . . Britain’s imperial desire for China, and a record of native resistance to the colonizing impulse of European powers” (215). Alexis Easley looks at how female participants in the architectural re- form movements of the 1830s and the historic preservation movements of the 1890s “provided new sites of agency and infused domestic management with new political and social meanings” (236), thereby bridging the gap be- tween the public (i.e., male) and private (female) spheres. Finally, Nanette Thrush shows how upper-class Victorian women used historical costumes to project images that not only displayed but enhanced their power and in- fl uence. The attempt of Clio’s Daughters to look both at women as historical fi g- ures and as historical writers inevitably creates some confusion. The primary emphasis is on the latter, and it may have been preferable to concentrate on that theme exclusively. Taken as a collection, the essays suffer from some schizophrenia about how aggressively

Journal

BiographyUniversity of Hawai'I Press

Published: Nov 21, 2008

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