North Carolina, USA

Analysis – Southern Women and the Revolution

Southern Women and the Revolution – Mary Beth Norton

1.   Thesis: The Revolutionary War transformed the social role of women. Depending on which region (North or South) a woman lived in and to which class (rural poor, urban, wealthy white) a woman belonged, their level of dependence to men dictated how they reacted to the war and led them to question what social roles they aspired for after the war.  “During and after the war the more highly educated and reflective among the white women began to raise questions about the social role to which they and their northern counterparts long had been confined…it shows that, contrary to what historians usually have maintained, women did not simply ‘quietly sink back in their places and take up the old endless routine of their existence’ after the war.” (p. 189-190)

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