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Abstracts of Books Erika Uitz. Die Frau in der mittelalterlichen Stadt. Freiburg: Herder Verlag, 1992.221 pp.; ill. ISBN 3-451-04081-6; DM 19.80. In this social history of women in Central and Western European medieval cities and towns, Uitz emphasizes women's active participation in the economic, social, and artistic spheres of medieval urban life. Uitz explores a variety of occupations in trade and commodity production and analyzes positions in legal and family matters as well as women's activities in the religious sphere. This survey shows that women were critically engaged in the push for urban emancipation from the eleventh to the fifteenth centuries and that they were positively affected by the resulting changes in their social, economic, and legal status. General Thomas Neville Bonner. To the Ends of the Earth: Women's Search for Education in Medicine. Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1992. xiv + 232 pp.; ill.; tables. ISBN 0-674-89303-4 (cl); $34.95. In this comparative study of women's medical education, Bonner focuses on the years from 1850 to 1914 when countless social and institutional obstacles excluded women from medical study in their homelands and forced them to seek educations abroad, primarily in Switzerland and France. Separate chapters are devoted to women's medical education in Russia, Germany, Britain, and the United States. Bonner examines individual , institutional, and national levels, exploring the slow progress and sometimes spectacular successes of pioneering female medical students against the backdrop of social and economic circumstances and of intense pubhc and institutional debates. Bonner suggests that this period of professional migration was a central chapter of modern women's intellectual and social history. Nupur Chaudhuri and Margaret Strobel, eds. Western Women and Imperialism : Complicity and Resistance. Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1992. vii + 276 pp. ISBN 0-253-31341-4 (cl); 0-253-20705-3 (pb); $39.95 (cl); $14.95 (pb). These essays explore the complex imperial roles European women played by seeking to refigure masculinist histories of imperialism without either falling into apologetic nostalgia for empire or silencing the voices of indigenous women. A framework is provided by the editors' historiographie introduction and an opening section that compares male and © 1993 Journal of Women-s History, Vol. 4 No. 3 (Winter) ___ 200 Journal of Women's History Winter female travel writing and Egyptian and European women's views of each other. Subsequent sections consider women's role in shaping imperial politics and ideology, the export of European women's reformism and feminism to colonies, the values assumptions of women missionaries, and complexities in the "incorporated" status of colonial wives. Ann Dally. Women under the Knife: A History of Surgery. New York: Routledge, 1991. xxv + 289 pp.; ill. ISBN 0-415-90554-0 (cl); $27.50. Dally is a physician who wants to help health-care activists understand the historical roots of contemporary gynecology. She focuses on the nineteenth -century U.S. and Great Britain, describing the experiences of doctors and patients as well as published medical writings. While early gynecological surgeons shared the biases of their time, she argues, their accomplishments were substantial. She is more critical of the late-nineteenth -century physicians who did ovariotomies, chtoridectomies, and hysterectomies in an effort to control behavior and calm emotions. Dally offers a bibliography but no footnotes. E. Ann Kaplan. Motherhood and Representation: The Mother in Popular Culture and Melodrama. London: Routledge, 1992. xv + 250 pp.; ill. ISBN 0-415-01126-X (cl); 0-415-01127-2 (pb); $49.95 (cl); $14.95 (pb). Kaplan identifies in melodramatic fiction and film two distinct but overlapping discourses of motherhood: historical and psychological. By historical , Kaplan means the social positioning of the mother after the industrial revolution, an understanding shaped by Rousseau, disrupted by World War I, and further undermined in recent decades. Kaplan's Lacanian psychoanalytic sphere positions the mother within the bourgeois "imaginary ." Kaplan traces representations of motherhood in U.S. novels and films in terms of complicity with the dominant paradigms of motherhood —models of maternal sacrifice or monstrous phallic mothers—or resistance to them—domestic feminist novels and women's films. A final chapter discusses the advent of postmodern motherhood. Vron Ware. Beyond the Pale...


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