The Center of the Web

Women and Solitude

Edited by Delese Wear

Subjects: Women's Studies
Paperback : 9780791415467, 279 pages, August 1993
Hardcover : 9780791415450, 279 pages, August 1993

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Table of contents



1. A Reconnection to Self: Women and Solitude
Delese Wear

2. Solitude, Suffering, and Personal Authority
Lynne McFall

3. Reclaiming the Safety of Solitude: Being With, Not Hiding From
Mara Sapon-Shevin

4. Time Alone, Place Apart: The Role of Spiracy in Using the Power of Solitude
Jacqueline Jones Royster

5. Who Am I When I'm Alone with Myself?
Jo Anne Pagano

6. Claiming the Tenured Body
Elizabeth Ellsworth

7. When We're Together, I Feel So Alone: Solitude in the Midst of a Crowd
Beth Rushing

8. Borders of Solitude
Tuija Pulkkinen


9. A Unicorn's Memoirs: Solitude and the Life of Teaching and Learning
Kal Alston

10. One-Way Mirrors, Alchemy, and Plentitude
Glorianne M. Leck

11. Inner Life, Outer World: Women and Solitude in India
Darshan Perusek

12. The Solitary Reader Revisited: Dialogues on a Working-Class Girlhood
Elyse Eidman-Aadahl

13. Speaking in Tongues: An African-American Woman in the World and the Academy
Beverly M. Gordon

14. Women, Single Life, and Solitude: A Plea to Rethink Curriculum
Susan Laird


15. Private Spaces: The Political Economy of Women's Solitude
Magda Lewis

16. Opening the Closed Door
Ellen Michaelson

17. Solitude and Irony: A Private Vision and Public Position
Elaine Atkins

18. Solitary Spaces: Women, Teaching, and Curriculum
Janet L. Miller

19. Writing Autobiographically in Solitude about Teaching: Why To; How To
Ann Berlak

20. A Time and Place of One's Own: Women's Struggles for Solitude
Linda K. Christian-Smith

Contributing Authors



The Center of the Web examines the complexities of how solitude is perceived by women. Each contributor describes how solitude is a dimension of her personal and public life: how she defines it, if and how she seeks it, where she finds it, and how it influences her life. The voices in the book come from varied vantage points, illuminating women's perspectives of solitude with regard to class, culture, race, and sexual identity. Some essays are grounded in philosophy, literature, or psychology, others are autobiographical, and some confront the seeming dichotomy of solitude on one hand, and care, connection, and responsibility on the other. With the contemporary focus on women's experiences grounded in context and connection to others, this book presents a perspective often overlooked or unexamined.

Delese Wear is Associate Professor of Behavioral Sciences and Coordinator, Human Values in Medicine at Northeastern Ohio Universities College of Medicine.