Engendered Seen + Heard: Women and War is the first in a series of exhibits to honor the actions and words of women whose works we hold in our collections. With a focus on the French Revolution, the American Civil War, and World War I, the women in this exhibit represent a wide range of sentiments on the role of women in society.
In the century and a half that spanned the French Revolution to World War I, it was a commonly held belief that women were biologically and intellectually inferior to men. As such, their role was relegated to the private domestic sphere where they tended to the home and family. However, the necessities induced by war placed women from virtually every social level into public roles in the work force, military, and politics. Not content to relinquish the new freedoms and opportunities that came with their more active public participation, many of these women used these experiences to vigorously advocate for rights that were denied to them by virtue of their gender.
DePaul University Special Collections and Archives