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The Daughters Of Danaus

by Mona Caird

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From Publishers Weekly
This reissue of an 1894 novel by prolific English author Caird (1854-1932) is noteworthy for its unequivocal rejection of Victorian ideals of femininity. Highly principled Hadria is implausibly persuaded to marry an inoffensive admirer whom she neither loves nor respects. After bearing two sons and adopting a baby girl, she wonders "why it was that marriage did not make all women wicked--openly and actively so," and, taking only her daughter, goes to Paris to study music. Circumstances force Hadria to return to her native Scotland, where she resumes married life but vows to continue her revolt against "man-made precepts." A number of melodramatic devices further exaggerate the plot. The status of women is virtually the sole concern, aired here in doggedly epigrammatic dialogue: "One has to pay for experience . . . . One has to pay more heavily for in experience." To dismiss Caird's novel as bombastic, however, overlooks its originality, evinced, in part, by its recognition of female complicity in perpetuating sexism and by its relative restraint in comparison with con temporaneous popular works.
Copyright 1989 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Library Journal
A trailblazer in feminist literature, this novel was first published nearly 100 years ago. As an extra, this edition also contains Caird's 1899 essay "Does Marriage Hinder A Woman's Self-development?"-- MR
Copyright 1989 Reed Business Information, Inc.

Book Description
This brilliantly witty novel (1894) follows the lives of two sisters in a wealthy Scots family. One escapes to a profession in London and eventually a decent marriage while the heroine, Hadria, vows to become a composer in Paris, but is thwarted. The novel reveals the power of marriage and the family hold in controlling the lives of talented, spirited women; but unlike other oppressed heroines of the period, Hadria and her feminism both survive. The books includes a trailblazing essay on marriage published by Caird, a visionary novelist and social critic.



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