Meyer, Julie. “Stranger in the City,”

In- and outsiders conceive of the modern city as a conglomerate of strangers, the individuals being anonymous and traditions and conventions lacking. Social relations are governed by the two divergent aims of avoiding identity and establishing cells of community. Unlike that of the rooted community, the orientation of the city is to time and not to place. Consequently, the traditional social order disintegrates, and new groups, which are not classes, emerge. This urban development will spread from the city to the country and change the ways of life and patterns of values.

Source: The American Journal of Sociology, Vol. 56, No. 5, March 1951, 476 – 483

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Elsie Clews Parsons, “Satisfaction of Social Categories” and “Women”

Category : Anthropology, Founding, Women

In any study of the relations between personality and social classification the queries arise why the social categories are alike so compulsive to the conservative-minded and so precious, why they are given such unfailing loyalty, why such unquestioning devotion? To offset the miseries they allow of or further, the tragedies they prepare, what satisfaction do they offer? Do they serve only as measures against change, as safeguards to habit, – this is the answer I once suggested, – raising barriers between those most apt to upset one another’s ways, the inevitably unlike, the unlike in sex, in age, in economic or cultural class?

Source: Social Rule (NY: GP Putnam”s Sons, 1916)

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Emily James Putnam, “The Lady of the Salon”

Category : Founding, Women

Towards the end of the reign of Henry the Fourth of France, Marquise de Rambouillet built for herself a new in the Rue St. Thomas du-Lovre, and placed her staircase in a corner of the building instead of in the middle where all the world had supposed a staircase must be.

Source:  (NY: GP Putnam’s, 1910): 211-230

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Sara Ruddick, “Love’s Reason”

Category : Philosophy, Women

My life has been shaped by a love affair with Reason. When I felt awkward or left out as a child or beset by lustful and envious fantasies, I clung to Reason in the most obsessive manner, determined to be faithful despise my “wild”, unpleasant feelings. And Reason rewarded me, promising that if I took refuge in books and held fast to the Rational, I would someday control “irrational”, unruly desires or at least, from Reason’s perch, belittle them. Somewhat later, as I battled with my devoted and intimidating lawyer father, Reason gave me arguments. My voice might be tense, I might even cry, but with Reason on my side I could manage my love and my fear.

Source: Maternal Thinking: Towards a Politics of Peace (Boston: Beacon, 1995): 7-12

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Elizabeth Sanders, “On the Costs, Utilities and Simple Joys of Voting”

Category : Politics, Women

A widely accepted “picture” equation of the voting calculus, originated by Downs’ is R = PB – C where R is reward; B is the perceived differential in benefits offered the voter by the two parties; P is the probability that his vote will bring about the favored party’s victory; and C represents the costs incurred in the voting decision. The correspondence of the Downsian equation to the putative
decisional calculus of the prospective voter has been tested with a variety of methods. The data used are typically drawn from national election surveys. No two studies have operationalized the terms of the equation in the same way. Nevertheless, the calculus,
with various modifications, has been shown to have predictive utility. relative importance of the formula’s various terms. It is the contention of this paper that voting costs have been treated unrealistically and their importance relative to the other factors unduly discounted.

Source: The Journal of Politics 42.3 (Aug 1980): 854-863

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Ann Snitow, “Refugees from Utopia: Remembering, Forgetting and the Making of the Feminist Memoir Project,”

Category : Psychology, Women

Rachel Blau DuPlessis and I, old friends from the Women’s Liberation Movement, discovered in the late eighties a shared indignation – and grief. The books about the sixties were beginning to come out. Histories mostly written by men who had been there, these books skirted the Women’s Liberation Movement with a finesse it was hard to quarrel with.

Source: Memory and the Future (NY: Palgrave McMillan, 2010), 141-157

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Frieda Wunderlich, “Fascism and the German Middle Class”

When a Gallup Pole was taken some years ago in the United States  asking people whether they felt they belonged to the upper, middle or lower class of society, some 8o per cent chose the middle class. A poll  in Germany before the rise of Hitlerism would have shown very different  results. Wage earners in Germany-even if skilled and well paid-were  proud to be proletarian, and it may have been a feeling of inferiority combined with the traditional adoration of the leading feudal class which, on the other hand, aroused the longing in large middle-class groups in Germany to belong to the upper strata of society. Election returns showed the attraction of parties of the right to middle-class people, who could there mingle with those groups to which they aspired to belong.

Source: The Antioch Review, Vol. 5, No. 1 (Spring, 1945), pp. 56-67

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