Victorian Women
Updated: 1/19/2020
Victorian Women
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Storyboard Text

  • The woman's sphere is in the home, she is meant to take care of her family.
  • ...The home is the wife's providence. It is her natural field of labor.
  • Have you heard of Catherine Beecher's new book The American Women?
  • I read that book like it's the Bible, it taught me how to be a real Victorian woman. It showed me how sophisticated women should act.
  • I agree but what opportunities are available for us?
  • I know it's against Victorian ideas, but I want to widen my sphere outside the home.
  • During the 1840’s clergymen, architects and supporters of the “cult of domesticity labeled the home as “the women’s sphere.” One writer claimed that “the home is the wife's providence...it is her natural field of labor.”
  • This bicycle craze is so energizing I've never felt so free or in control outside the home!
  • Catherine Beecher’s famous advice book The American Woman's Home in 1869 was a bible of domestic topics for Victorian Women. It was a book of how a sophisticated and a well to do home should be run by women.
  • Frances Willard
  • As president of the Women's Christian Temperance Union I vow to give all women opportunities to make their separate spheres with jobs such as lobbyists and lecturers.
  • While women disliked being confined to domesticity, most remained committed to nurturing their families. Many advocates for women’s spheres to be widened merged Victorian traditions with new ideals of womanhood.
  • These books by Mary Wilkins Freemen inspire me to be more independent and self-sufficient outside the home.
  • Women began challenging the social conventions of women with a new interest in health with the bicycle craze that swept America in the 1880’s. Victorian attitudes toward women’s exercise were restrictive and believed that women should never sweat and be covered at all times. Women made statements by riding around in split skirts and disregarding genteel traditions.
  • No restrictive Victorian ideals of women and fitness can stop me from doing what I love!
  • Frances Willard was a women's temperance leader that was elected president of the Women’s Christian Temperance Union (WCTU) in 1879. The organization helped women to gain experiences as lobbyists, organizers, and lecturers, helping women make their way into “separate spheres.”
  • Writers such as Mary Wilkins Freeman, introduced women to self-sufficiency and independence through their captivating works. Women’s new attitude towards their place in society was mostly concentrated on educated, middle and upper class women that could find jobs as nurses and journalism.
  • I wish there was some way we could help the poor and immigrants to have opportunities to have this new modern mindset.
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