Unruly tongue : identity and voice in American women's writing, 1850-1930

Cutter, Martha J

Publication Details Click to collapse Cite/Export

  • Creator Martha J. Cutter
  • Format Books
  • Contributors
  • Publication Jackson : University Press of Mississippi, [1999] ©1999
  • Physical Details
    • xix, 228 pages : illustrations ; 24 cm
  • ISBNs 9781578060856, 1578060850
  • OCLC ocm39539272


  • ""Women should be seen and not heard" was a well-known maxim in the nineteenth century. In a society perceiving that language was for the province of male, white speakers, how did women writers find a voice?" "In Unruly Tongue Martha J. Cutter answers this question with works by ten African American and Anglo American women who wrote between 1850 and 1930. She shows that female writers in this period perceived how male-centered and racist ideas on language had silenced them. By adopting voices that are maternal, feminine, and ethnic, they broke the link between masculinity and voice and created new forms of language that empowered them and their female characters."--BOOK JACKET.


  • Includes bibliographical references ([207]-221) and index.


  • 1. The Problem of Voice in American Culture, 1850-1930 -- 2. American Women's Fiction, 1850-1880: Domestic Discourses in the Writings of Fanny Fern, Louisa May Alcott, and Harriet Wilson -- 3. From the Law of the Father to the Law of the Feminine: Mary Wilkins Freeman's and Anna Julia Cooper's Revisionary Voices -- 4. The Search for a Feminine Voice in the Works of Kate Chopin -- 5. Herstory in Hisland, History in Herland: Charlotte Perkins Gilman's Reconstruction of Gender and Language -- 6. The Politics of Hybridity in Frances Harper's Iola Leroy -- 7. Jessie Fauset's and Willa Cather's Metalinguistic, Ethnic Discourses -- 8. Coda: Beyond the Binary?
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