The Paradoxical President: Re-imagining Abraham Lincoln

The Paradoxical President: Re-imagining Abraham Lincoln 1

Every February, American children from all over their country are treated to the dusty facts regarding the sixteenth president of the United States — that of good ol’ Abe Lincoln, he of simple beginnings and Civil War stewardship. The guy was tall; he freed the slaves; he was killed while attending a theater performance. What …

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Mary Todd Lincoln: Reevaluating an Unkind Memory

Mary Todd Lincoln: Reevaluating an Unkind Memory 2

The Yellow Wallpaper, a well-known short story by Charlotte Gilman Perkins in the feminist canon, describes a woman with “nervous depression” who is ordered to do as little as possible. But, rather than improving her condition, this “treatment” makes her worse [1].   The story is a cautionary tale about the emotional straight-jacket that can result …

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A Woman of the Wild West: The Life of Mary Hallock Foote

A Woman of the Wild West: The Life of Mary Hallock Foote 3

In 1971, author Wallace Stegner published his novel Angle of Repose, which went on to earn a Pulitzer Prize.  The book is widely considered to be one of the best novels of all time; it is simultaneously a slice of life from the American Victorian West, a novel focused on environmental concerns, and a love …

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Elizabeth Regina: The First, The Great, the Only

Elizabeth Regina: The First, The Great, the Only 4

“…. And the new social system was finally secure. Yet the spirit of the ancient feudalism was not quite exhausted. “ – Lytton Strachey A prominent critic wrote about her two centuries after her death. Bette Davis played her in a melodramatic movie nominated for five Academy Awards. Today, millions of people attend traveling fairs …

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Laura Ingalls Wilder: A Life in Perspective

Laura Ingalls Wilder: A Life in Perspective 5

On visiting the website of the Little House on the Prairie Museum lists, it lists the following caveat: “Due to an ongoing error with GPS technology, many GPS navigators and mapping services are unable to direct their users to our site. To avoid becoming hopelessly lost, please use the following directions.” An amusing comment, to …

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The Brontes: A Group Portrait

The Brontes: A Group Portrait 6

‘Genius’ can be defined as the creation of something that afterwards feels like it was always here. While psychologists attempt to understand how genius occurs, history teaches that it flourishes in the strangest of situations. Such is certainly the case with the children of Patrick Bronte, an Irish cleric who married a Cornish woman and …

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