Book Notes

Book Notes

In the era of U.S. history that began with abolitionism and ended with the defeat of radical Reconstruction, a tenuous alliance developed among
movements for the rights of women, African Americans, and workers. Kugler’s account of the debates in the Reconstruction-Era women’s rights
movement shows how the alliance was shattered. Frederick Douglass, a strong supporter of women’s suffrage, couldn’t understand how leaders of the women’s movement could fail to give priority to fighting the terror campaign against blacks in the South. Susan B. Anthony, Lucy Stone Blackwell, and Elizabeth Cody Stanton argued that a woman’s right to vote was just as urgent as full citizenship for blacks. The mass of war-weary people looked upon these debates as irrelevant to the true work of the country—territorial expansion and money making. Kugler’s book relates this important part of U.S. history mainly through the words of the participants themselves, a method that works because they spoke and wrote in a clear nineteenth-century style.

...

Lima