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Women in Early Modern Europe, 1500-1700 / Edition 1

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In this wide-ranging volume, Cissie Fairchilds rejects conventional accounts of the Early Modern period that claim it was a period of diminishing power and rights for European women. Instead, she shows that it was a period of positive changes that challenged and led to the eventual destruction of traditional misogynist notions that women were inferior to men.

The book explores the historical basis of patriarchal views of women and describes the great intellectual debate over the nature and roles of women taking place at the time. It gives an account of women’s daily lives and looks at women’s work during the period. The book also deals with the role of women in religion and with witchcraft and the prosecution of women as witches. The book concludes by examining the relationship between women and the State.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780582357181
  • Publisher: Pearson
  • Publication date: 8/8/2007
  • Series: Longman History Of European Women Series
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 396
  • Product dimensions: 6.18 (w) x 9.24 (h) x 0.85 (d)

Meet the Author

Cissie Fairchilds is Professor of History at SyracuseUniversityand is an expert in 18th Century French history, Early Modern European social history and European Women’s History. Her previous publications include The Production and Marketing of Populuxe Goods in Eighteenth-Century Paris in Consumption and the World of Goods (1993), Domestic Enemies: Servants and Their Masters in Old Regime France (l984) and Poverty and Charity in Aix-en-Provence , 1640-1789(1976).

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Table of Contents



1. Inferiors or Equals? Ideas about the Nature of Women


2. Girls and Maidens

3. Wives

4. Mothers

5. Widows and Elderly Women


6. Housewives, Spinsters, Harvest Hands: Women's Work in the Countryside

7. Craftswomen, Midwives, Servants: Women's Work in Cities and Towns

8. Artists, Musicians, Actresses, Writers, Scholars, Scientists: New Employment Opportunities for Women


9. Wives, Preachers, Martyrs: Women in the Protestant Reformation

10. Mothers, Nuns, Nurses, Teachers: Women and the Catholic Reformation

11. Witches


12. Rulers

13. Citizens

14. Wariors and Empire-Builders


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