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Glory, Passion, and Principle

The Story of Eight Remarkable Women at the Core of the American Revolution

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The heroism of the females of the American Revolution has gone from memory with the generation that witnessed it, and nothing, absolutely nothing, remains upon the ear of the young of the present day. -- Charles Francis Adams
John Adams, Thomas Jefferson, Benjamin Franklin -- these are the names we typically associate with the American Revolution. But was American History solely written by men? Were there no influential women? No women who had an impact on the founding of America in its crucial, formative years, in its fight for independence? Indeed, there were -- although their contributions have been overlooked or ignored for over two hundred years. Until now.
Glory, Passion, and Principle is an extraordinary journey through revolutionary America as seen from a woman's perspective. Here are the lesser-known stories of eight influential females who fought for freedom -- for their country and themselves -- at all costs. Whether advising prominent male leaders in political theory (Abigail Adams), using their pens as swords (Phillis Wheatley, Mercy Otis Warren), acting as military spies (Sybil Ludington, Lydia Darragh), or going to battle (Molly Pitcher, Deborah Sampson, Nancy Ward), these women broke free of the limitations imposed upon them, much as our forefathers did by resisting British rule upon American soil...and laying the groundwork for the United States as we know it today.

A Reading Group Guide to
Glory, Passion, and Principle
The Story of Eight Remarkable Women at the Core of the American Revolution
Melissa Lukeman Bohrer
I am a woman in whom historical events had stimulated to observation a mind that had not yielded to the assertion that all political attentions lay out of the road of female life.
-- Mercy Otis Warren
* * *
Who are the women behind the men who helped found our nation? How did they support, influence, or contradict the ideals of their husbands, fathers, brothers, and brethren?
How did the social, political, and intellectual developments of the time enable them to challenge the American notions of equality? And how did the American Revolution set the stage for an eventual "declaration of independence" among women?
Glory, Passion, and Principle tells the story of eight remarkable women who fought for freedom -- for their country and themselves -- at all costs. Whether advising such men as John Adams and Thomas Jefferson in political theory (Abigail Adams), using their pens as swords (Phillis Wheatley, Mercy Otis Warren), acting as military spies (Sybil Ludington, Lydia Darragh), or going to battle (Molly Pitcher, Deborah Sampson, Nancy Ward), these women broke free of the limitations imposed upon them, much as our forefathers did by resisting British rule upon American soil...and laying the groundwork for the United States as we know it today.
QUESTIONS FOR DISCUSSION
1. What are the common themes that fasten and bind these eight women together through American history? How have their collective concerns, intentions, and aspirations shaped modern American society?
2. Abigail Adams, the wife of patriot and future president John Adams, is arguably the most recognizable woman from revolutionary America. Discuss Abigail's alternate roles in her husband's life as loving wife, political confidante, and devil's advocate. 3. Abigail Adams' plea to her husband to "remember the ladies" reflected her views that men should not have "absolute power over [their] wives." Still, Abigail privately mourned the loss of the simple, domestic life she never had. In what ways did Abigail's devotion to her family and her furious quest for independence come into conflict?
4. How did Phillis Wheatley, in defending authorship over her poems, defend the ability of every black person to think, speak, and write? How did she use her writing as a means of escape as well as a cry for emancipation? And how did Mercy Otis Warren?
5. What similarities did Phillis Wheatley and Nancy Ward, the brave and diplomatic leader of the Cherokee tribe, share as female representatives for an oppressed people?
6. As a Quaker, Lydia Darragh believed that all human beings -- regardless of race, gender, or creed -- were entitled to personal, political, and religious freedom. Discuss the tenets of Quaker dogma as they relate to goals of the American colonists.
7. Many stories have emerged of different women fighting on the battlefields during the Revolutionary War. How did the story of "Molly Pitcher" become a legend? How did Molly as a character become a symbol of female strength and ability? In what ways do Sybil Ludington, Deborah Sampson, and Nancy Ward embody the Molly Pitcher myth?
8. Life in a Cherokee tribe was supremely matriarchal, with Cherokee women having more rights than either their American or European sister. How did Nanye'hi, soon to become "Nancy Ward" after marrying a white man, exercise her power of authority over her tribe? How did her marriage to Bryant Ward solidify the affinity she would have for the white man...and help bridge the tension between the Cherokees and the colonists?

BookPage [A] thoroughly researched, fascinating volume.

Boston Herald Conventional histories of the American Revolution feature the drumbeat of the founding fathers....[Glory, Passion, and Principle] rectifies the oversight with eight spirited narratives about women who played inspirational roles in the birth of the nation.

Jennifer Lee Carrell, Ph.D. author of The Speckled Monster Evoking passion as fierce as that of its heroines, Glory, Passion, and Principle sings out history far too long left silent....An inspiring read!

Publishers Weekly Each chapter...drop[s] the reader right into the action. Bohrer portray[s] a culturally diverse group of women, offering a valuable perspective on the efforts and achievements of some minority women during that era.