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Saber and Scroll

Abstract

The American Revolution provided the impetus for women to envision broader roles for themselves in civic affairs. Writing about history and politics allowed women to express themselves in a way that would contribute to the overall well-being of the nation. The American Revolution provided one woman, Mercy Otis Warren, the perfect opportunity to become one of America’s greatest political thinkers and historians in the gender exclusive realm of republican ideology. Historians and historiographers have often trivialized Warren’s writings of the late eighteenth century and have neglected her poetry, plays and History of the American Revolution as important contributions to America’s past. However, as a result of the ‘new left’ and ‘feminist’ movements of the 1960s, Warren’s political writings, history and poetry have been reexamined. She is no longer seen as a peripheral contributor to the Revolution, based on her relationships to certain male political figures of the time, but rather as a revolutionary steeped in republican ideology who sought to unite America based on the principles fought for during the Revolution.

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