Publication Date

5-2019

Date of Final Oral Examination (Defense)

3-1-2019

Type of Culminating Activity

Thesis

Degree Title

Master of Arts in History

Department

History

Major Advisor

Raymond J. Krohn, Ph.D.

Major Advisor

Lisa Marie Brady, Ph.D.

Advisor

Leslie J. Madsen-Brooks, Ph.D.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 4.0 License

Abstract

This thesis uses the life of 19th-century American reformer Mary Gove Nichols to explore antebellum feminism through the lens of health and marriage reform. Using primary sources including the subjects own personal publications, this thesis traces one theme throughout Nichols’s life: her passionate drive to educate women on their own health, and to make such knowledge accessible, so that they could acquire it for themselves. This particular theme manifested in two forms: wellness acquired via homeopathic medicine, specifically the water cure; and wellness acquired from a safe and loving marriage. Her life’s work, an early form of feminism, aimed to not only aid in women’s personal well-being, but opened the door that would allow them to become stewards of wellness for others.

DOI

10.18122/td/1558/boisestate

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