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Making Women's HistoriesBeyond National Perspectives$
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Pamela S. Nadell and Kate Haulman

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780814758908

Published to NYU Press Scholarship Online: March 2016

DOI: 10.18574/nyu/9780814758908.001.0001

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Amateur Historians, the “Woman Question,” and the Production of Modern History in Turn-of-the-Twentieth-Century Egypt

Amateur Historians, the “Woman Question,” and the Production of Modern History in Turn-of-the-Twentieth-Century Egypt

Chapter:
(p.137) 6 Amateur Historians, the “Woman Question,” and the Production of Modern History in Turn-of-the-Twentieth-Century Egypt
Source:
Making Women's Histories
Author(s):

Lisa Pollard

Publisher:
NYU Press
DOI:10.18574/nyu/9780814758908.003.0006

This chapter examines the work of nineteenth-century amateur historians who took up the “woman question” in relation to Egyptian modernity, and suggests that this work was a by-product of imagining the nation-state as it shifted from Ottoman hegemony to British occupation. It discusses the distinction between histories produced by men and those written by women, with the former celebrating a mythic “Lady Egypt”—the gendered-feminine embodiment of Egypt that emerged from turn-of-the-twentieth-century historical debates—and the latter providing models of modern womanhood for their readers and writing women into the current political struggles. It also considers how scholarship on women's history asserted competing “versions of where the Egyptian people came from and where, as a nation, they ought to be headed.”

Keywords:   amateur historians, woman question, Egypt, modernity, nation-state, women, Lady Egypt, womanhood, women's history

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