Taking the Trade: Further Reading

On abortion and contraception

Brodie, Janet Farrell. Contraception and Abortion in Nineteenth-Century America. Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 1994.

Gordon, Linda. Woman’s Body, Woman’s Right: A Social History of Birth Control in America. New York: Grossman, 1976.

Mohr, James C. Abortion in America: The Origins and Evolutions of National Policy, 1800-1900. New York: Oxford University Press, 1978.

Mohr, James C. Doctors and the Law: medical jurisprudence in nineteenth-century America. New York: Oxford University Press, 1993.

Reagan, Leslie J. When Abortion was a Crime: Women, Medicine, and Law in the United States, 1867-1973. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1997. ACLS Humanities E-Book Link

Shorter, Edward. A History of Women’s Bodies. New York: Basic Books, 1982. Especially chap. 8.

Solinger, Rickie. The Abortionist: A Woman against the Law. New York: Free Press and Maxwell Macmillan International, 1994.

Solinger, Rickie. Pregnancy and Power: A Short History of Reproductive Politics in America. New York: New York University Press, 2005.

Solinger, Rickie. Wake Up Little Susie: Single Pregnancy and Race before Roe v. Wade. New York: Routledge, 1992; 2000.


On courtship, marriage, divorce, and sexual coercion

Bailey, Joanne. Unquiet Lives: Marriage and Marriage Breakdown in England, 1660-1800. New York: Cambridge University Press, 2003.

Block, Sharon. Rape and Sexual Power in Early America. Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 2006.

Cott, Nancy F. Public Vows: A History of Marriage and the Nation. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 2000.

Cott, Nancy F. “Divorce and the Changing Status of Women in Eighteenth-Century Massachusetts.” William and Mary Quarterly, 3rd series, 38 (1976), 586-614.

Cott, Nancy F. “Eighteenth-Century Family and Social Life Revealed in the Massachusetts Divorce Records.” Journal of Social History 10 (1976), 20-43.

Fissell, Mary E. “Hairy Women and Naked Truths: Gender and the Politics of Knowledge in Aristotle’s Masterpiece.” William and Mary Quarterly, 3rd series, 60 (2003), 43-74.

Fissell, Mary E. Vernacular Bodies: The Politics of Reproduction in Early Modern England. New York: Oxford University Press, 2004.

Foster, Hannah Webster. The Coquette [1797 novel]. Ed. Cathy N. Davidson. New York: Oxford University Press, 1996.

Hirsch, Alison Duncan. “The Thrall Divorce Case: A Family Crisis in Eighteenth-Century Connecticut.” Women & History No. 4 (1982), 43-75.

Hodes, Martha. White Women, Black Men: Illicit Sex in the Nineteenth-century South. New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 1997.

Kenslea, Timothy. The Sedgwicks in Love: Courtship, Engagement, and Marriage in the Early Republic. Boston: Northeastern University Press; Lebanon, NH : University Press of New England, 2006.

Lyons, Clare A. Sex among the Rabble: An Intimate History of Gender and Power in the Age of Revolution, Philadelphia, 1730-1830. Chapel Hill, N.C.: University of North Carolina Press, 2006.

Pagan, John Ruston. Anne Orthwood’s Bastard: Sex and Law in Early Virginia. New York: Oxford University Press, 2003.

Richardson, Samuel. Clarissa, Or, the History of a Young Lady [1747-48 novel]. A modern edition of the full text (1536 pages!) (with introduction and notes by Angus Ross) is published by Penguin Books (1986). An abridged, one-volume edition often used in college classrooms is published by Houghton Mifflin in their Riverside editions.

Rothman, Ellen K. Hands and Hearts: A History of Courtship in America. New York: Basic Books, Inc., 1984.

Smith, Daniel Scott and Michael S. Hindus. “Premarital Pregnancy in America, 1640-1971: An Overview and Interpretation.” Journal of Interdisciplinary History 4 (1975), 537-570.

Thompson, Roger. Sex in Middlesex: Popular Mores in a Massachusetts County, 1649-1699. Amherst, Mass.: University of Massachusetts Press, 1986.

Twinam, Ann. Public Lives, Private Secrets: Gender, Honor, Sexuality, and Illegitimacy in Colonial Spanish America. Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press, 1999.

Ulrich, Laurel Thatcher and Lois K. Stabler. “‘Girling of it’ in Eighteenth-Century New Hampshire.” The Dublin Seminar for New England Folklife 10 (1985), 24-36.


On gender relations in the 17th and 18th century Anglo-American world

Brown, Kathleen M. Nasty Wenches, Good Wives, and Anxious Patriarchs: Gender, Race, and Power in Colonial Virginia. Chapel Hill, N.C.: University of North Carolina Press, 1996.

Crane. Elaine Forman Crane. Ebb Tide in New England: Women, Seaports, and Social Change, 1630-1800. Boston: Northeastern University Press, 1998.

Kamensky, Jane. Governing the Tongue: The Politics of Speech in Early New England. New York: Oxford University Press, 1997.

Karlsen, Carol F. The Devil in the Shape of a Woman: Witchcraft in Colonial New England. New York: W.W. Norton, 1987.

Karlsen, Carol. “Women and Gender,” [an excellent overview of the recent scholarship on North America]. In A Companion to Colonial America. Ed., Daniel Vickers. London: Blackwell, 2003. 194-235.

Kerber, Linda K. Women of the Republic: Intellect and Ideology in Revolutionary America. Chapel Hill, N.C.: University of North Carolina Press, 1980.

Lombard, Anne S. Making Manhood: Growing Up Male in Colonial New England. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 2003.

Morgan, Jennifer L. Laboring Women: Reproduction and Gender in New World Slavery. Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 2004.

Norton, Mary Beth. Founding Mothers and Fathers: Gendered Power and the Forming of American Society. New York: Knopf, 1996.

Shepard, Alexandra. Meanings of Manhood in Early Modern England. New York: Oxford University Press, 2003.

Thomas, Keith. “The Double Standard.” Journal of the History of Ideas 20 (1959), 195-216.

Ulrich, Laurel Thatcher. The Age of Homespun: Objects and Stories in the Creation of an American Myth. New York: Knopf, 2001.

Ulrich, Laurel Thatcher. A Midwife’s Tale: The Life of Martha Ballard, Based on her Diary, 1785-1812. New York: Knopf, 1990.

Wilson, Lisa. Ye Heart of a Man: The Domestic Life of Men in Colonial New England. New Haven: Yale University Press, 1999.

Wulf, Karin. Not All Wives: Women of Colonial Philadelphia. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 2000.


On law and women in court

Dayton, Cornelia Hughes. Women before the Bar: Gender, Law, and Society in Connecticut, 1639-1769. Chapel Hill, N.C.: University of North Carolina Press, 1986.

Hull, N. E. H. Female Felons: Women and Serious Crime in Colonial Massachusetts. Urbana, Ill: University of Illinois Press, 1987.

Rosen, Deborah A. “Women and Property across Colonial America: A Comparison of Legal Systems in New Mexico and New York.” William and Mary Quarterly, 3rd series, 60 (2003), 355-81.

Salmon, Marylynn. Women and the Law of Property in Early America. Chapel Hill, N.C.: University of North Carolina Press, 1986.

Stretton, Tim. Women Waging Law in Elizabethan England. New York: Cambridge University Press, 1998.


For additional fascinating Early American case studies on related issues

On a case of sexual ambiguity, see these two interpretations: Kathleen Brown, “’Changed . . . into the Fashion of a Man’: The Politics of Sexual Difference in a Seventeenth-Century Anglo-American Settlement,” Journal of the History of Sexuality 6 (1995), 171-93; and Mary Beth Norton, Founding Mothers and Fathers (see above), 183-197.

Cohen, Patricia Cline. The Murder of Helen Jewett: The Life and Death of a Prostitute in Nineteenth-Century New York. New York: Knopf, 1998.


On the Pomfret area

Larned Ellen D. History of Windham County, Connecticut. Vol. I. Worcester, MA: [by the author], 1874; reprinted by the Pequot Press, 1976. Volume II is also available in full on Google Books.


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Last Modified: January 1, 2009