Women Homesteaders in the West
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This paper examines the general gender roles of women, and specifically of single women homesteaders, during the period of the settlement of the West in the U.S.A. and their impact upon that society. The paper also discusses how these roles, especially the role of landowner, contributed to the creation of a new social identity for women. The paper analyzes the means, such as the Homestead Act, through which the female homesteaders contributed to the transformation of the society.
From the Paper:"If beforehand the role of the woman was predominant in the household economy, the industrial development brought about by the development of new cities changed that. "Women came to Illinois during a time of profound changes in American gender roles. Women and men had often labored together on the farms of colonial America, producing food, clothing and other goods for their own use in a system of "household economy". But the rise of industrialism and large cities in the late eighteenth and early nineteenth century led to the division of labor along the gender lines."
"The new social and economic reality included the creation of factories, shops and offices. All of them were necessary for the management of the new reality. Naturally, the number of men was no longer enough in order to cover all the available positions. This encouraged a change in mentality and women were allowed to move into the public sphere and work in the same areas as the men. This meant that for the first time women were getting paid for their labor. This brought about the concept of independence. Women could invest the money they earned as they pleased. The new acquired money allowed them to buy property and therefore become just as powerful as men."
Sample of Sources Used:
- Bakken, G.M, Farrington, B. Encyclopedia of women in the American west, Google Books, retrieved from http://books.google.it/books?id=U9zIeyugktEC&pg=PA138&lpg=PA138&dq=women+homesteaders+west+19&source=bl&ots=k7QuDFTBt-&sig=ozet9iFCZ--zPJA8C0szsM0Vmq4&hl=it&ei=xmmlTawJy8mzBoT0gJMI&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=4&ved=0CDkQ6AEwAw#v=onepage&q&f=false April 11, 2011.
- Enss, C. Hearts West: true stories of mail-order brides on the frontier (Twodot), 2005.
- Hensley M. The single women who homestaeded the West in High Country News, April 2, 2007, Retrieved from http://www.hcn.org/issues/343/16929 April 11, 2011.
- Hensley, M.M. Staking her claim: women homesteading the West (High Plains), 2008.
- Peavy, L., Smith, U. Pioneer women: the lives of women at the fronteer (Univ of Oklahoma Pr), 1998.
Cite this Analytical Essay:
Women Homesteaders in the West (2013, May 27) Retrieved January 19, 2020, from https://www.academon.com/analytical-essay/women-homesteaders-in-the-west-153386/
"Women Homesteaders in the West" 27 May 2013. Web. 19 January. 2020. <https://www.academon.com/analytical-essay/women-homesteaders-in-the-west-153386/>