Women in Literature

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Women in Literature The Arizona Territory was a beautiful and impressive area that deserved to have exquisite writings to represent the land. It was particularly the men who were allowed to publish their thoughts. Women’s writings were not looked upon as scholarly and not published for public enjoyment. In the late 1800's and early 1900's women's literature was underrepresented. The ideas of women and their creativity was discouraged. In Southern Arizona, this discouragement existed for a variety of reasons. Some of these reasons attributed to this was that there were more limiting resources, an overabundance of women who were illiterate, and geography. Despite these and other stumbling blocks, two women overcame the odds and are seen as great women authors and literary achievers. Sharlot Hall and Frances Gillmor proved that women had a great deal to convey and exhibited the talent of literary expertise to accomplish their goals. Not only do they write about beauty and harmony, they write about the conflicts with the Indians and the hardships that other cultures had to endure in Arizona. One reason that few women published literature was because they came to Arizona primarily with their husbands who were in the Army and needed to relocate. These women, who came from populated and larger cities, were exposed to a different way of life in Arizona. There were few educational facilities in the west to teach young ladies about literary traditions. A lot of these women had to take care of themselves, their children, growing food and teaching. They were rooted to the same spot, sometimes for months at a time. This deprived them of a lot of mental stimuli that may have gotten in more populated areas.(1 pg. 48) Therefore sheltered women in Arizona were not encouraged to write stories or poems. Not that they didn’t know how, they told stories all the time. Children loved to hear the stories of their mothers lives and backgrounds. Women just never knew there was a medium to get their work out, so that more than just their children were partial to stories and poems of landscapes and journeys across many different lands. There is a wealth of information about Ms. Sharlot Hall. Her life was very complex and together it all ties together to tell the story of her fame.

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