Wednesday, July 18, 2007
Women's movement in wartime
Hot off the presses, The Women's Movement in Wartime: international perspectives, 1914-1919, has just been donated to the OHSU Library by one of the authors, Dr. Kimberly Jensen of Western Oregon University. Jensen's chapter, "Esther Pohl Lovejoy, M.D., the First World War, and a Feminist Critique of Wartime Violence," highlights the wartime work of the 1894 University of Oregon Medical School graduate.
Esther Pohl Lovejoy visited France in 1917 to "determine what women physicians might advantageously do in the way of relief work in that war-stricken country;" when she returned, she embarked on a speaking tour and also wrote about her trip in her book The House of the Good Neighbor. Jensen expounds upon the conclusions Lovejoy drew from her time in France, including her belief that women were equal with men, that women needed to unite across class and national boundaries to benefit the war effort, and that the war affected women very differently than men. Lovejoy's experiences during the war led her to formulate her "vision" of international health which, in Jensen's words, "could enable the 10,000 medical women worldwide to shape international policy and peace."
While Jensen's chapter on Lovejoy is the only one to address the medical response to the war, the rest of the essays are equally interesting reads. The full table of contents is available online.