By Martha H. Verbrugge
As city existence and women's roles replaced within the nineteenth century, so did attitudes in the direction of actual future health and womanhood. subsequently examine of wellbeing and fitness reform in Boston among 1830 and 1900, Martha H. Verbrugge examines 3 associations that popularized body structure and workout between middle-class ladies: the women' Physiological Institute, Wellesley university, and the Boston basic college of Gymnastics. opposed to the backdrop of a countrywide debate approximately woman tasks and healthiness, this booklet follows middle-class ladies as they realized approximately future health and explored the connection among health and femininity. Combining clinical and social historical past, Verbrugge appears on the usual girls who participated in future health reform and analyzes the conflicting messages--both feminist and conservative--projected through the idea that of "able-bodied womanhood."
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Additional resources for Able-Bodied Womanhood: Personal Health and Social Change in Nineteenth-Century Boston
The ignorant cried out that he was killed by a mysterious Providence; but the doctors found upon examination that it was not a mysterious Providence that killed him, but a chunk of mutton. The mutton was bigger than the boy's swallow, and so it choked him. , but that people must not swallow big chunks of mutton. 4 " Moral Physiology and the Habits of a Healthy Life 39 Without Nature or God to impute, no legitimate excuse remained. According to advice literature of the mid-1800s, conscience marked health as an inescapable duty to oneself.
While medical sectarians tried to heal the sick, popular physiologists hoped to forestall disease by re-educating Americans about diet, exercise, alcohol, tobacco, and sex. Two leaders of that crusade in New England were Sylvester Graham (17941851) and William Andrus Alcott (1798-1859). An evangelist minister, Graham gained notoriety in the 1830s by promoting temperance, vegetarianism, and wholesome bread, baked at home from unbolted wheat flour. ) Meanwhile, Alcott, a physician who trained at Yale, set out in 1830 to cure his chronic pulmonary ailments through a natural diet, rather than artificial drugs.
As the worlds of work and home divided more sharply, the roles of middle-class men and women grew further apart as well. According to Lemuel Shattuck's rough survey in 1845, a male over the age of twenty was far more likely to work outside the home than was his female counterpart (73 versus 17 percent). 55 The norm for a middle-class woman in her mid-twenties was to be married and occupied in the home. At mid-century, the average age of first marriage for Massachusetts women was about twenty-four.
Able-Bodied Womanhood: Personal Health and Social Change in Nineteenth-Century Boston by Martha H. Verbrugge