Become Who You Are

Become Who You Are

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Hedwig Dohm (1831-1919) was a thinker and writer significantly ahead of her time. She championed women's rights in Germany and criticized with acerbic wit the social, political, and familial inequities inherent in gender relationships at the time of the first wave of the women's movement. Her novella Become Who You Are is about a woman, Agnes Schmidt, whose husband has died and who is grappling with finding an identity for herself as an aging widow--reflecting the restrictions imposed especially on aging, widowed women who often yearn for a life and identity of their own. Also included here is the English translation of Dohm's essay, "The Old Woman," which is a compelling call for women to resist the social, intellectual, psychological, and physical restraints placed on women of Dohm's time.
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Product details

  • Hardback | 136 pages
  • 137.2 x 215.9 x 15.2mm | 226.8g
  • Albany, NY, United States
  • English
  • Translation
  • Total Illustrations: 0
  • 0791466035
  • 9780791466032

Review quote

"For a modern reader, it is shocking to realize that women's lives were over so soon and that nineteenth-century German society made no provision to integrate independent women once their husbands died. While in many cases Hedwig Dohm separates her political views from her fiction, this piece resonates with an indictment of the restraints placed on bourgeois women's education and identity formation."
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About Hedwig Dohm

Elizabeth G. Ametsbichler is Professor of German at the University of Montana. She is the coeditor (with Elke P. Frederiksen) of Women Writers in German-Speaking Countries: A Bio-Bibliographical Critical Sourcebook.
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