Midwifetale(MarthaBallard)

Midwifetale(MarthaBallard) - HISTORY 221 A Midwife's Tale...

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A Midwife’s Tale HISTORY 221 A Midwife’s Tale Reflections Paper Landon 11/7/2007
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A Midwife’s Tale A Midwife’s Tale tells the story of a woman named Martha Ballard. The author, Laurel Thatcher Ulrich, uses a diary that Martha left behind to recreate events in her life as a woman in the late 18 th and early 19 th centuries. She offers a very interesting view into the life of women in the colonial United States as well as helping us to understand some of the customs of her time period, a period in which men were the dominant sex. Ulrich uses sources in a similar way to how they were used in Facing East from Indian Country . She has no need to turn anything around to recreate a story; however, she does take the sources of one group and uses them to tell us the story of another. She uses sources from men of Martha’s time and compares the stories to the ones found in Martha’s diary. Men of Martha’s time had little respect for women, in terms of being necessary for the growth of the human race. Most women had a very specific place, right behind the men. A man’s wife would care for his children and his home, but not be a public figure for the family. This means that men were the common viewpoints of the time so women did not have as great of a say into what was written in history books, newspapers, and other documents. It was this way of thinking, placing women behind men, which caused the lack of women’s documents being left behind from colonial times. Women were busy caring for the home and had little time to be writing history books and newspapers. I would guess that men of that time might possibly even find a document written by a woman to be somewhat unreliable. This brought about a similar scenario to Native American history in which the history of women is almost lost for a period of time in our nation’s history. The “imaginative” part of this book is somewhat complicated to understand and tough to
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This note was uploaded on 03/27/2008 for the course HIST 221 taught by Professor Thatonelady during the Fall '07 term at Iowa State.

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Midwifetale(MarthaBallard) - HISTORY 221 A Midwife's Tale...

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