Providing an overview of the history of writing by women in the period, this Companion establishes the context in which this writing emerged, and traces the origin of the terms which have traditionally defined the debate. It includes essays on topics of recent concern, such as women and war, erotic violence, the liberating and disciplinary effects of religion, and examines the work of a variety of women writers, including Harriet Beecher Stowe, Rebecca Harding Davis and Louisa May Alcott. The volume plots new directions for the study of American literary history, and provides several valuable tools for students, including a chronology of works and suggestions for further reading.

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