No Constitutional Right to Be Ladies: Women and the Obligations of Citizenship

No Constitutional Right to Be Ladies: Women and the Obligations of Citizenship

This pioneering study redefines women's history in the United States by focusing on civic obligations rather than rights. Looking closely at thirty telling cases from the pages of American legal history, Kerber's analysis reaches from the Revolution, when married women did not have the same obligation as their husbands to be "patriots," up to the present, when men and women, regardless of their marital status, still have different obligations to serve in the Armed Forces.

An original and compelling consideration of American law and culture, No Constitutional Right to Be Ladies emphasizes the dangers of excluding women from other civic responsibilities as well, such as loyalty oaths and jury duty. Exploring the lives of the plaintiffs, the strategies of the lawyers, and the decisions of the courts, Kerber offers readers a convincing argument for equal treatment under the law.

Title:No Constitutional Right to Be Ladies: Women and the Obligations of Citizenship
Edition Language:English
ISBN:9780809073849
Format Type:

    No Constitutional Right to Be Ladies: Women and the Obligations of Citizenship Reviews

  • Siria

    A really fascinating look at women's history in the United States from the late eighteenth century through to the nineties, framed not in terms of the struggle to gain equal rights, but in terms of th...

  • Jennifer

    A complex and nuanced look at the relationship between the rights and obligations of citizenship and the way that gender (and to some extent race) has impacted the relationship. Kerber clearly shows t...

  • AskHistorians

    Kerber flips the history of "women's rights" on its head - looking at the history of women's obligations as citizens, and the conflict between women who want formal equality and women who want "specia...

  • Jacqueline

    This is a wonderful book, and should be of great interest to all those who think about the equality of women and men. Linda Kerber addresses the meaning of citizenship, and how citizen's obligations t...

  • Niki

    A must read for everyone to understand women's role and rights in American society...

  • Kate Arms

    A fascinating look at how women have been treated as under fewer obligations to the state throughout US history....

  • Galen Miller

    Great perspective, albeit a slow read. Depressing with the redundant actions restricting women's freedoms....

  • Lynette

    An amazing and eye-opening book featuring several actual court cases that shaped women's history from the revolutionary period to the 1970s. Highly readable and insightful....