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The Characterization of Aunt Martha - Book Report/Review Example

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Women were considered as men’s property, and they were supposed to take care of their husbands and women. While this was essential for the sustenance of the family system in the society as well as good nurturing and up-bringing of the children, the American society was deprived of a huge intellectual base with the women restrained in homes. Aunt Martha placed emphasis upon the need to explore this intellectual resource, so that not only the society would benefit, but also the status and identity of the women in the society would change for the better. Aunt Martha wrote in her diary, “If ever I live and grow up, my one aim and concentrated purpose shall be and is to show that women can learn, can reason, can compete with men in the grand fields of literature and science and conjecture..., that a woman can be a woman, and a true one, without having all her time engrossed in dress and society” (Martha cited in Jacob 372). Aunt Martha was aware of this potential in women because she saw the same potential in herself as a woman, which makes her gender very important in the work she did. Perhaps, she would not have been as confident about the women’s competency had she not been a woman herself. Aunt Martha challenged the view that women think differently from men, and are thus not suitable for tasks that require a man’s mind to be performed. ...
Aunt Martha had nine siblings in total, and she was the eldest of all. Born to the family of Baltimore Quakers, there existed a sense of intellectual

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and spiritual equality between men and women in her family. However, in spite of this sense of equality, there still existed a strong perception that daughters were not to be educated. At the tender age of three years, Martha wanted to learn how to read, but her mother was reluctant to grant Martha her wish because of her belief in the dire consequences of educating daughters. With her quest for knowledge and education, Aunt Martha has achieved the status of a pioneer in the women’s education. Her dedication reflects in the establishment of the Bryn Mawr institution as a center of excellence for learning. Throughout her life, Aunt Martha took several steps at different times for the betterment of women. In the year 1889, Aunt Martha together with Mary Gwinn and Mary Garrett offered the Johns Hopkins University Medical School a large gift in compensation for equal basis of admission for both women and men. Blacks have been a minority in the history of the US, and have seen tough times over the centuries. They have been enslaved, stereotyped, and considered inferior in the predominantly White society. Aunt Martha was a White woman whose contributions changed the perceptions of the black people in general and black women in particular in the society. This meant a lot to the black community since they saw the support coming from a very unconventional source. Aunt Martha is one of the strongest and exemplary women in the history of the US. She has been the iconic image of the black people before the Civil War, and

Summary

17 May 2012. The Characterization of Aunt Martha Aunt Martha’s gender is of a lot of significance for the enlightenment, moderation, and empowerment of all women in general and the black women in particular…
The Characterization of Aunt Martha
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