Mother's First-Born Daughters

Mother's First-Born Daughters : Early Shaker Writings on Women and Religion

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... an excellent collection of writings covering the period 1774-1854... mostly in print for the first time.... Humez provides excellent and clear introductions, emphasizing the ambiguous role of women."-Library JournalThis very fine book is a valuable contribution to Shaker studies, religious studies, and women's studies." -Journal of American HistoryThe editor provides insightful commentary, but the power is in the straightforward and powerful words of the women who founded and participated in this most religious American group."-The Bloomsbury ReviewHumez's work is a model of revisionist scholarship, critically objective and editorially balanced, and provides a solid introduction to the early history of the Shakers." -Utopian StudiesIsrael, you have begun to bear for other souls, and you must never give out, till the last soul is gathered in. When you get home, tell your father and stepmother that your mother is risen from the dead." -from the bookA fascinating introduction to the world of the early Shakers, this anthology documents the contributions to Shaker religion made by women during its first seventy years. It gives a more accurate vision of Shakerism and highlights the ways in which gender can play an important role in the creation of a new religious institution.
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Product details

  • Paperback | 336 pages
  • 157.2 x 235.2 x 22.9mm | 572.3g
  • Indiana University Press
  • Bloomington, IN, United States
  • English
  • 0253207444
  • 9780253207449

About Jean M. Humez

JEAN M. HUMEZ is Associate Professor of Women's Studies at the University of Massachusetts, Boston. She is the editor of Gifts of Power: The Writings of Rebecca Jackson, Black Visionary, Shaker Eldress.
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Back cover copy

A fascinating introduction to the world of the early Shakers, this anthology documents the contributions to Shaker religion made by women during its first seventy years.
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Table of contents

Foreword by Catherine L. Albanese and Stephen J. SteinAcknowledgmentsA Note on Manuscript Sources and AbbreviationsGeneral Introduction1. "A Mother in Divinity": Ann Lee Imagery and Narrative, 1808-1851IntroductionHealing Stories by Women (1808)Testimonies of Ann Lee's Followers (1816)Ann Lee's Own Personal Experience Narratives, as Remembered by Her Followers (1816)Narrative of the Journey through New England (1816)Women's Testimonies in Defense of Ann Lee (1827)Jemima Blanchard's Stories as Recalled by Roxalana Grosvenor (1836)Elizabeth Wood's Testimony (1851)2. "Your Parent in the Gospel": The Sayings and Correspondence of Lucy WrightIntroductionWords Spoken by Mother Lucy...March 25th, 1815Accounts of Two Visits with Mother Lucy WrightSayings of Mother Lucy at Watervliet (1816)Sayings of Mother Lucy from Eldress Betsy Harrison's BookCounsel and Instruction Given by Mother Lucy...Mother Lucy's Last Visit to WatervlietSelected Correspondence3. "Poor Child in a Distant Land": Selected correspondence of Shaker Sisters, West and East, 1805-1835IntroductionSelected Correspondence4. "The Heavens Are Open": Women's Perspectives on Midcentury SpiritualismIntroductionThe Onset of the Revival (Watervliet Church Family Meeting Journal, (1838- 1840)A Visionary Dream Concerning Ann Eliza Goodwin (1840)Mother Lucy's Word to the Sisters (1841)Visits from ALien Spirits at Watervliet (Church Family Meeting Journal, 1842-1843)The Hancock Sweeping Gift (1843)Hancock Mountain Meeting (1843)Holy Mother Wisdom's Fold (n.d.)Paulina Bate's Divine Book of Holy and Eternal Wisdom (1849)Mary Hazzard's "Precious Crumbs of Heavenly Food..." (1839-1842)New Year's Verses for the New Lebanon Sisters (1846)A Selective Bibliography of Published SourcesIndex
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Review quote

" ... an excellent collection of writings covering the period 1774-1854 ... mostly in print for the first time... Humez provides excellent and clear introductions, emphasizing the ambiguous role of women." Library Journal "This very fine book is a valuable contribution to Shaker studies, religious studies, and women's studies." Journal of American History "The editor provides insightful commentary, but the power is in the straightforward and powerful words of the women who founded and participated in this most religious American group." The Bloomsbury Review "Humez's work is a model of revisionist scholarship, critically objective and editorially balanced, and provides a solid introduction to the early history of the Shakers." Utopian Studies
show more

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