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A Milwaukee Woman's Life on the Left: The Autobiography of Meta Berger

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"Wife, mother, schoolteacher, and politician, Meta Schlichting Berger became an activist at a time when women's role in public life - indeed, even their right to vote - was hotly contested. Telling her story in her own words, Meta Berger reveals her transformation from a traditional wife and mother to an activist who held elective office for thirty years. In 1897, when she married Victor Berger, later the first Socialist elected to the U.S. Congress, Meta had no idea she was embarking on a path to political campaigns in her own right and service
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Overview

"Wife, mother, schoolteacher, and politician, Meta Schlichting Berger became an activist at a time when women's role in public life - indeed, even their right to vote - was hotly contested. Telling her story in her own words, Meta Berger reveals her transformation from a traditional wife and mother to an activist who held elective office for thirty years. In 1897, when she married Victor Berger, later the first Socialist elected to the U.S. Congress, Meta had no idea she was embarking on a path to political campaigns in her own right and service on the Milwaukee School Board and the University of Wisconsin Board of Regents. During her career she took active roles in the peace and woman suffrage movements while serving as confidant and advisor to her Congressman husband. When Victor faced twenty years in prison and denial of his Congressional seat because of his opposition to World War I, Meta helped him fight to his eventual vindication in the U.S. Supreme Court. After Victor's death in 1929, Meta became far more radicalized than her husband ever was and became embroiled in controversial left-wing politics during the turbulent 1930s." "Meta Berger's story is more than that of one woman; rather, it is a tale that reveals the changes that faced a nation during momentous times."--BOOK JACKET.
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
2001 Gambrinus Prize for Best Book on Milwaukee History from the Milwaukee County Historical Society
From The Critics
Meta Schlichting Berger was a Wisconsin wife, mother, schoolteacher, and politician at a time when women's role in public life (including their right to vote) were as contested as they were restricted. Ably edited by Kimberly Swanson, A Milwaukee Woman's Life On The Left is Meta Berger's autobiography and takes us through her transformation from a traditional wife and mother to a political activist who held elective office for thirty years. Married to Victor Berger in 1897, she saw her husband being elected to Congress as their first Socialist member. She was to eventually launch her own political campaign that would place her on the Milwaukee School Board and the University of Wisconsin Board of Regents. She was an activist in the peace and women's suffrage movements of the day, all while serving as confidant and advisor to her Congressman husband. Her husband was faced with twenty years in prison and denial of his Congressional seat because of his opposition to World War I. Meta helped him to win his eventual vindication before the United States Supreme Court. After her husband's death in 1929, Meta became even more radicalized than her husband ever was and embroiled in left-wing politics during the turbulent decade of the 1930s. A Milwaukee Woman's Life On The Left is a fascinating and informative contribution to women's studies in general, and Wisconsin history in particular.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780870203220
  • Publisher: Wisconsin Historical Society
  • Publication date: 12/1/2000
  • Edition description: 1
  • Pages: 224
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.50 (d)

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