Review of Unbridling the Tongues of Women. A Biography of Catherine Helen Spence, by Susan Magarey
Susan Magarey has opted for Spence as woman first, then social reformer. Her writing is accepted as 'the line of least resistance*, Spence's comment as an old woman on why she began writing her first novel at the age of nineteen while employed as a governess. Her career as a novelist is covered summarily in the second chapter, though there is a skilled and persistent journalist lurking behind the social reformer. Other chapters detail her work in children's welfare, education, women's rights, as a political reformer, preacher and theologian. As a survey of the existing diverse and extensive literature in its area, each chapter has its particular value and use, and this may indeed be the most efficient way of approaching a complex and multi-faceted career, though not all structural problems have been resolved.
Please sign in to access this article and the rest of our archive.