Nan Enstad's "Ladies of Labor, Girls of Adventure" Analytical Essay by Neatwriter

Nan Enstad's "Ladies of Labor, Girls of Adventure"
This paper reviews a book by Nan Enstad, "Ladies of Labor, Girls of Adventure", about striking women workers in 1909.
# 60391 | 825 words | 0 sources | 2005 | US
Published on Aug 18, 2005 in Literature (American) , English (Analysis) , Women Studies (General)

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In Nan Enstad's "Ladies of Labor, Girls of Adventure", through their use of clothing, dime novels and movies, striking women workers in 1909 were developed and displayed their identities as workers, ladies, and Americans, areas, from which their cultural background, gender and economic status often barred them. The author points out that their identity, or what Enstad calls "working ladyhood", expressed a special form of radicalism and showed how consumer consumption can be a political statement. The paper reveals that the dime novels were not used as escapism, but instead as a means of bettering oneself, offering the readers narrative fantasies of social recognition, which allowed them to briefly bridge painful cultural contradictions.

From the Paper:

"The women workers read books that offered them the ammunition needed to make their way in an upper class male environment. The role models in the novels were independent strong women whose resolve and self-sufficiency made them worthy of secret inheritances and allowed them to escape from dangerous situations on their own. The heroine in the book, normally an orphaned worker, learns that she is actually an heiress and marries a wealthy man. She is liberated from her father's control and can now battle personal challenges with male-like bravery and intelligence."

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Nan Enstad's "Ladies of Labor, Girls of Adventure" (2005, August 18) Retrieved September 22, 2020, from

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