First Generations: Women In Colonial America

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First Generations: Women of Colonial America, written by Carol Berkin, is a novel that took ten years to make. Carol Berkin received her B.A. from Barnard College and her M.A. and Ph.D. from Columbia University. She has worked as a consultant on PBS and History Channel documentaries. Berkin has written several books on the topic of women in America. Some of her publications include: Revolutionary Mothers: Women in the Struggle for America's Independence (2004) and Civil War Wives: The Life and Times of Angelina Grimke Weld, Varina Howell Davis, and Julia Dent Grant (2009). The prejudice that the author brings forward strongly is the notion of feminism. The author’s main purpose of writing this novel is to examine the role of women played around …show more content…

Surprisingly, Native American women had more freedom than the white women in the Chesapeake, Middle Colonies, or New England region. Some Native American women were given rights such as controlling land, political power, marriage and divorce in choice. There were matrilineal kinship system, in fact, marriage was not the most top rite of passage for them. The author covers around the 1600s- 1800s century time period while focusing on mainly white women but also women of color. Berkin stated that she could not offer as much information on Indian or black women since there was not much presented but still did an excellent job explaining the significance of all the women. The first two paragraphs in the novel focuses on white women mainly presented as having multiple roles as housewives. The third chapter go in depth with the way women are treated in different tribes; however, most of the information presented was noted by Europeans so some biases are presented. Chapter four focuses on the European-American women with comparing marital relationships and inheritance patterns. The next chapter highlights the gendered division of labor and the difficulty to keep a family as a slave. Chapter six and seven moves on to the eighteenth century and shows how women have improved in areas such as more political participation and increasing social class of

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