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Women’s Voices of Duty and Destiny

Religious Speeches Transcending Gender


Elizabeth W. McLaughlin

This book collection is a celebration of women who speak truth to power in the public square. A perfect fit for undergraduate students of rhetoric, gender, religion and history, Women’s Voices of Duty and Destiny showcases the speech texts of 14 women addressing societal issues from the values of their religious beliefs and discourse communities. Between the tensions of the duty of gender roles and human destiny, these global voices representing different time periods and religions address the thematic issues of faith, society, education, reform, freedom and peacemaking. Written in clear, straightforward language, students will directly encounter the words and voices of leaders who strive to make the world better for all in the quest for human dignity. Each speaker seeks to forward the transcendent value of human freedom as reinforced by her explicit references to the divine. This collection is appropriate for 200-400 level undergraduate classes and offers a broad sampling of women who speak in the public square.

Foreword – Acknowledgements Introduction – Rabbi Sally J. Priesand (1946–): "Reflections on My Life as a Rabbi" (2009) – Agnes Baker Pilgrim (1924–): "Water" (2005) – Clarina Howard Nichols (1810–1885): "The Responsibilities of a Woman" (1851) – Phyllis Schlafly (1924–2016): "The Equal Rights Amendment (ERA)" (1975) – Elizabeth Cady Stanton (1815–1902): "The Solitude of Self" (1892) – Maria W. Stewart (1803–1879): "Why Sit Ye Here and Die?" (1832) – Mary McLeod Bethune (1875–1955): "What Does American Democracy Mean to Me?" (1939) – Frances E. Willard (1839–1898): "Everybody’s War" (1874) – Aimee Semple McPherson (1890–1944): "On Prohibition" (1930) – Sojourner Truth (1797–1883): "Ain’t I a Woman?" (1851) – Dr. Brook Bello: "The Beautiful Color of Freedom" (2015) – Saint Mother Teresa (1910–1997): "National Prayer Breakfast Address" (1994) – Dorothy Day (1897–1980): "Union Square Speech" (1965) – Aung San Suu Kyi (1945–): "Nobel Acceptance Speech" (2012) – Conclusion.