Women Authors of the 19th Century

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Women Authors of the 19th Century

Some of the most influential women authors of all time lived in the 19th century. These women expressed their inner most thoughts and ideas through their writings. They helped to change society, perhaps without knowing it, through poetry, novels, and articles. Emily Dickinson, Harriet Jacobs, Kate Chopin, Louisa May Alcott, and Elizabeth Oakes Smith are the best-known controversial and expressive women authors of their time.

On December 10, 1830 a poet was born. When Emily Dickinson was born in Amherst, Massachusetts, no one knew that she was to become the most well known woman poet of all time. She loved her family deeply. Her father was a man of great reverence in Amherst and her mother was an invalid all of Emily’s life. Dickinson had great admiration for her brother Austin. He married a woman named Susan.

Susan and Emily became very close. So close, in fact, that it was rumored that they were lovers. She wrote love letters and poems to Susan. Some scholars believe that there is an indication of homosexuality found in many of Dickinson’s poems. Emily never married, which did not help diminish the rumors. Another rumor affecting Emily related to her sanity. It is said that in her later years Dickinson refused to leave her house. When company would come to the door she would run upstairs to avoid them. She only totally secluded herself from adults. She made gingerbread for the neighborhood children and played games with them occasionally.

No matter what rumors circulated there is no doubt that Emily Dickinson is a wonderful poet.

There is another sky,

Ever serene and fair,

And there is another sunshine,

Though it be darkness there.

She expressed her feelings for the loss of her mother, father, and close friends in her poetry. She refused to believe that Heaven was a better place than Earth and she showed her love of nature in some of her poems. She found nature superior to society and preferred it. None of Dickinson’s poems had titles. Many thought this was because she did not want them published. Many of her poems are dark and mysterious but all are true works of art.

Emily Dickinson died peacefully on May 15, 1886. Only ten of Emily’s poems were published in her lifetime. After her death over 1700 of her poems were discovered. She had bound them into several booklets. In 1890 and 1891 some ...

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...husetts. Alcott remains an enduring figure in American literature. Although some regard her portrayals of nineteenth-century domestic life as dated, she is remembered for her sympathetic and realistic portrayals of the maturing adolescent. Her most popular work, Little Women, was instrumental in changing the focus of juvenile literature to include sensitive works for young adults.

Nineteenth century women authors were some of the mo9st influential writers in the past several hundred years. Emily Dickinson expresses her love of nature through her poetry, and Harriet Jacobs shares a piece of herself and exposes the slavery of African American women. Kate Chopin invites people into her world of valuable life lessons that she had to learn the hard way. Louisa May Alcott gave us timeless fiction that captures our imaginations and our hearts. Elizabeth Oakes Smith wrote about women’s suffrage and sparked new ideas for a new, equal society. These women are just a handful of the great and controversial writers of the 19th century that have had a great impact in today’s society. Without these women and their tremendous talent for writing, we would not truly know what great literature is.
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