With Courage and Common Sense: Memoirs from the Older Women's Legacy Circles [NOOK Book]

Overview

Women who were sixty or older at the turn of the twenty-first century have lived through some of recent history's most momentous moments—and yet these women often believe that their personal lives and stories are insignificant, not worthy of being recorded for future generations. To change that perception and capture some of these life stories before they are lost, the Story Circle Network, a national organization dedicated to helping women write about their lives, developed the Older Women's Legacy (OWL) Circle ...

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With Courage and Common Sense: Memoirs from the Older Women's Legacy Circles

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Overview

Women who were sixty or older at the turn of the twenty-first century have lived through some of recent history's most momentous moments—and yet these women often believe that their personal lives and stories are insignificant, not worthy of being recorded for future generations. To change that perception and capture some of these life stories before they are lost, the Story Circle Network, a national organization dedicated to helping women write about their lives, developed the Older Women's Legacy (OWL) Circle Memoir Workshops. During the first two years of the project (1998-2000), nearly 500 older women participated in workshops that offered them the opportunity and encouragement to reflect on and create written records of their lives.

With Courage and Common Sense presents an extensive selection of memoirs from the OWL Circle project. Organized thematically, they describe women's experiences of identity, place, work, family life, love and marriage, loss and healing, adventures great and small, major historical events, and legacies to keep and pass along. Taken as a whole, the memoirs chronicle far-reaching changes in the ways that women participated in the world during the twentieth century. They show how women learned to surmount obstacles, to courageously make the most of the opportunities that came their way, and to move quietly and wisely beyond the limits that were imposed upon them.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780292784406
  • Publisher: University of Texas Press
  • Publication date: 1/1/2010
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Sales rank: 856,986
  • File size: 915 KB

Meet the Author

Susan Wittig Albert
Susan Wittig Albert, Ph.D., founded the Story Circle Network, based in Austin, Texas, in 1997.

Dayna Finet is an independent scholar and writer who co-directed the OWL Circle project.

Biography

Susan Wittig Albert grew up on a farm in Illinois and earned her Ph.D. at the University of California at Berkeley. A former professor of English and a university administrator and vice president, she now lives with her husband, Bill, in the country outside of Austin, Texas. In addition to the China Bayles mysteries, she writes the Victorian Mysteries series, along with her husband, under the pseudonym of Robin Paige.

Author biography courtesy of Penguin Books, LTD.

Good To Know

In our exclusive interview with Albert, she revealed some fun facts about herself:

"My first job was selling ladies' undies at Woolworth's for 35 cents an hour in Danville, Illinois."

I learned to garden from my mother, who thought that the most important thing you did every spring was to plant the potatoes. I learned to read from my father, who never planted a potato in his life. Somehow, I managed to create a life and make a living between these two extremes. Happily, I haven't had to go back to selling undies. Not yet, anyway."

"I love living in the country with Bill, two black Labs, and a black cat. I'd rather read a book or write one than do just about anything else in the world, except maybe for gardening and sitting in a bathtub full of hot, hot water and bubbles. Or knitting, spinning, weaving, dyeing -- I'm a fiber-arts fanatic."

"You can find out what I'm doing today (or what I did yesterday) by checking out my web log, at susanalbert.typepad.com/lifescapes (but there's no web cam, so don't look for me in the bathtub)."

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    1. Also Known As:
      Robin Paige
    1. Date of Birth:
      1940
    2. Place of Birth:
      Danville, Illinois
    1. Education:
      Ph.D., University of California at Berkeley

Table of Contents

Foreword
Acknowledgments
Introduction 1
Ch. 1 Identity: I Am Not Always the Same Person 19
Daughter 21
A Woman Named Billie 21
My Mother's Daughter 22
My Father's Daughter 23
A Story about Who I Am 24
All the Things I Am ... 25
I Am Not Always the Same Person 26
Going to School 27
A European Youth 30
Girls Just Didn't Go to College 31
A Lover of Back Roads 32
Gifts That I Chose for Myself 32
Ch. 2 Home: I Was Born in East Texas 35
I Was Born in East Texas ... 37
How My Mother Got Her Washing Machine 40
Keeping House for My Mother 44
Courage and Little Else 46
Chores, Chores, Endless Chores 46
A Lesson for Young Brides 50
Horses, Friends, and Cleaning Out the Stalls 51
Aunt Hattie's House 53
Finding Home 54
Ch. 3 Work: Making Something That Lasted 57
Making Something That Lasted 59
God Had Given Me a Brain 59
Making My Own Way 60
Clerking in My Dad's General Store 61
"I'm Doing the Best I Can" 62
District 23, Speedway School 65
Southern Bele: A Full-Time Job 68
A Fitting Job 70
A Cattle Drive 71
The Autoclave 71
My Navy Career 72
An Office in the Courthouse 78
Things Began to Change 78
My Silver Star 80
Just an Old Hooker 81
Granny's Biscuits 83
Ch. 4 Grandmother and the Pirates 85
Grandmother and the Pirates 86
My Father and the Value of Money 86
Nanoo 87
Grandma Maggie Helman 88
My Mother and the Pigeons 89
An Unexpected Meeting 90
William and the Outhouse 91
My Brother Ray 92
Aminta 93
We All Loved Each Other 95
Lillian 96
Rosy 97
Ch. 5 'Til We Meet Again 101
'Til We Meet Again 103
Love Letters 104
Those Golden Days at Graceland 105
How My Life Changed 107
To Do As I Pleased 108
A Keepsake Penny, and Love Refound 109
"Hey, Maud Farkle ..." 111
Do You Believe in Fate? 112
"I Will Promise You a Rose Garden" 113
Ch. 6 Loss: The Strength to Survive 115
The Lost Shoes 117
The Day My Childhood Died 117
When Daddy Died 119
The Strength to Survive 121
Teddy 122
Changing Places 123
Renee 125
The Day Grandma Died 126
"I Should Have Cried" 127
Losing Martha 128
When I Think of Grace ... 129
Ch. 7 Living Fully: I Still Had My Two Dollars 133
Decoration Day, Fairy Tales, and the Ice Cream Wagon 134
I Still Had My Two Dollars 135
Baseball Fever 136
The Best Christmas 138
Inside a Prism 139
My Bonneville Convertible 139
Kyky the Elephant 140
Outward Bound 142
The Happiest Day of My Life 143
The Day My Daughter Walked 144
I Felt like a Queen 145
A Summer with Granny Rylee 145
Ch. 8 Witness: Ordinary Lives, Extraordinary Events 149
Remembering War 151
Holocaust Survivor 151
"Where Is Pearl Harbor?" 152
December 7, 1941 153
How Would I Measure Up under Fire? 154
Rommel's Hannibal Connection 154
Not a Dry Eye in the House 156
When the Americans Came 157
The Day Roosevelt Died 158
An Army Wife in Postwar Germany 160
An Ordinary Day: An Extraordinary Event 164
Terror: The Day MLK Died 165
When the Russians Invaded Czechoslovakia 167
Four Joyful Days 169
Ch. 9 "I Wish You Could Have Known My Grandma" 171
Family Books, Family Treasures 172
The Tapestry 173
My Grandmother's Dress 174
My Mother's Ring 175
My Keepsake Quilt 176
The Legacy of the Two Lauras 178
Mama's Writings 179
The Other Side of Fifty 183
A Letter to a Young Person 185
"I Wish You Could Have Known My Grandma" 186
Biographical Notes 189
About Story Circle Network 203
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