Bound By a Mighty Vow: Sisterhood and Women's Fraternities, 1870-1920

Bound By a Mighty Vow: Sisterhood and Women's Fraternities, 1870-1920

by Diana B. Turk, Bailey Jackson
     
 

ISBN-10: 0814782752

ISBN-13: 9780814782750

Pub. Date: 07/30/2012

Publisher: New York University Press

Sororities are often thought of as exclusive clubs for socially inclined college students, but Bound by a Mighty Vow, a history of the women's Greek system, demonstrates that these organizations have always served more serious purposes. Diana Turk explores the founding and development of the earliest sororities (then called women's fraternities) and explains

Overview

Sororities are often thought of as exclusive clubs for socially inclined college students, but Bound by a Mighty Vow, a history of the women's Greek system, demonstrates that these organizations have always served more serious purposes. Diana Turk explores the founding and development of the earliest sororities (then called women's fraternities) and explains how these groups served as support networks to help the first female collegians succeed in the hostile world of nineteenth century higher education.

Turk goes on to look at how and in what ways sororities changed over time. While the first generation focused primarily on schoolwork, later Greek sisters used their fraternity connections to ensure social status, gain access to jobs and job training, and secure financial and emotional support as they negotiated life in turn-of-the-century America. The costs they paid were conformity to certain tightly prescribed beliefs of how "ideal" fraternity women should act and what "ideal" fraternity women should do.

Drawing on primary source documents written and preserved by the fraternity women themselves, as well as on oral history interviews conducted with fraternity officers and alumnae members, Bound by a Mighty Vow uncovers the intricate history of these early women's networks and makes a bold statement about the ties that have bound millions of American women to one another in the name of sisterhood.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780814782750
Publisher:
New York University Press
Publication date:
07/30/2012
Pages:
251
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.70(d)

Table of Contents


Contents
Preface
Acknowledgments
Introduction: Fraternities’ Past and Historians’ Present
1 Of Serious Mind and Purpose: The First Generation of Fraternity Women
2 The Most Socially Eligible: “At Home” with the Second Generation of Fraternity Women
3 A National Society to Rank with the First in America: Expansion and Exclusion in the Women’s Greek System
4 In Search of Unity: Fostering “High Ideals” in the Face of Antifraternity Sentiment, 1910–1920
5 Once a Sister, Always a Sister: Fraternity Membership in the Postcollege Years
6 Bound by a Mighty Vow: The Costs and Bene?ts of Fraternity Membership, 1870–1920
Notes
Bibliography
Index
About the Author

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