Amelia Bloomer, The Lily, and Early Feminist Discourse in the US
Taylor and Francis Group
Is Version Of
Greenlee School of Journalism and Communication
The Lily, a temperance and woman’s rights publication started by Amelia Bloomer in 1849, was among the first periodicals published by and for women in the US. This study argues that Bloomer’s editorship of the Lily from 1849–1854 advanced the cause of woman’s rights in the US through discourse, dialogue, and practice. The issues addressed in the Lily—marital relations, political representation, property ownership, education and work opportunities, fair wages, fashion customs, women’s health, religion, and gendered social norms—reflected a broad-based agenda for feminism that is familiar today. At the same time, the journal’s privileging of middle-class white womanhood exposed fissures and blind spots related to race and class that would reverberate for generations. In her role as editor, Bloomer helped show readers the personal was political, earning her a significant place in feminist media history.
This accepted article is published as Lucht, T., Amelia Bloomer, The Lily, and Early Feminist Discourse in the US. American Journalism., 2021 38(4); 391-415. DOI: 10.1080/08821127.2021.1982621. Posted with permission.