Physical Fitness, Sports, Athletics, and the Rise of the New Woman

Physical Fitness, Sports, Athletics, and the Rise of the New Woman

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I demonstrate a fundamentally important but ignored connection between the development of the qNew Womanq in late Victorian England and the parallel history of women's sports in Britain. The company of high-profile British feminists known as qNew Womenq could never have existed without extraordinary changes in women's physical and educational culture---changes that were, however, with ironic and confounding effect, aimed not at producing feminist reformers but disciplined wives and super-healthy mothers. I trace the influence of sports and fitness on the New Woman from the eugenics movement to the rise of physical fitness curriculum in the public schools, to the dress reform movement. My research finds overwhelming evidence in autobiographical writing by numerous New Women, along with Victorian books on educational theory and pedagogy, popular serial illustrations, and the literature of the period written and read by New Women. Ultimately, this project adds an important new chapter to the understanding of the feminist analysis of the body specifically in nineteenth-century British culture.of this work, but it will be mined for its narratives of deliberately initiated physical and athletic activity rather than ... Yet an essay by Susan Stanford Friedman, in a series of essays on feminist theory and methodology in a 2006 M (121.5), begins anbsp;...

Title:Physical Fitness, Sports, Athletics, and the Rise of the New Woman
Author: Tracy J. R. Collins
Publisher:ProQuest - 2007

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