Little Women Archive

The Conflicted Feminism of Little Women

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Louisa May Alcott’s 1868 novel mostly celebrates traditional gender roles and places a rosy, wistful haze over its portrayal of domestic life. But her well-rounded portrayal of imperfect women has afforded the novel a long-lasting relationship to feminist thought.

The Age Gap in 19th Century Literature

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Mona Chalabi's op-ed for the NYTimes states that as women age, they examine the dating profiles of their contemporaries, while men, no matter their ages, peruse photos of women in their early 20’s.

Cool Girls Don’t Wear Dresses: Being One of the Boys in Classic Children’s Books

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Seminal children’s books are littered with girls who are defiantly un-girly. Just a few of the many examples are Harriet the Spy, who wears a toolbelt stuffed with spy supplies and Pippi Longstocking, the rowdy orphan with the strength of Popeye.

Do-Overs: 5 Books that Tell The Untold Story

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Some of the best rewrites of classic stories come to us through the author’s imaginings of what the original doesn’t say. Through original work that transcends “fan fiction,” these stand-alone novels and plays work best when they have their own story to tell. Whether this is done through expanding narrative

When We Were Little Women

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Like all the books I loved as a kid, Little Women took over my imagination and play and conversation—but in this case, more than any other, the takeover was communal. With my friends, I play-acted scenes from the book. Meg’s stay with the fashionable Moffats. The onset of Beth’s

A Victorian Legacy in the Midwest: Hair in Art and Literature

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Leila’s Hair Museum occupies an unassuming building in Independence, MO along a busy street of strip malls. I sought it out last summer on a visit to the Midwest, intrigued by its website. According to it, Leila Cahoon, a retired hairdresser who has made collecting hair art her life’s

Literary Boroughs #54: Boston, MA (Part Two)

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The Literary Boroughs series will explore little-known and well-known literary communities across the country and world and show that while literary culture can exist online without regard to geographic location, it also continues to thrive locally. Part One of this post appeared earlier this week, as did a bonus Literary Borough walking tour of

Literary Boroughs #54: Boston, MA (Part 1)

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The Literary Boroughs series will explore little-known and well-known literary communities across the country and world and show that while literary culture can exist online without regard to geographic location, it also continues to thrive locally. Posts are by no means exhaustive and we encourage our readers to contribute in the comment section. The