`` Well Behaved Women Seldom Make History ``

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Multiple Meanings Laurel Thatcher Ulrich, in a scholarly article written in 1976, wrote that “well-behaved women seldom make history” (Ulrich XIII). Over time, that phrase has became a slogan for feminists around the world. It appears on many products and media, like shirts, jewelry, and even wine glasses. At the time she wrote it, she meant for it to mean that women who are well-behaved do not get their stories told, even if they did something extraordinary or heroic, though now, people interpret it in many different ways. Fig. 1. “Well behaved women seldom make history” shirt (Customized Girl). The most common product with the phrase “well-behaved women seldom make history” being sold on Amazon is, by far, shirts. There is a variety…show more content…
This interpretation, compared to how Ulrich meant for the quote to be interpreted is quite different. Ulrich wanted the quote to represent how women who do not do something bad, rarely get their stories told, no matter how heroic their actions were, while the creators of this shirt want women to speak out, to make change, and to create equality for everyone, which, by some people, is seen as wrong for women to do. Although what the designers of this product seem to be aiming for is different than what Ulrich originally meant for her quote, I am sure that Ulrich still would support that message. Fig. 2. “Well-behaved women seldom make history” necklace (Amazon) Another product that stood out was a necklace. It is a bronze colored chain with a round, white pendant, that is maybe an inch in diameter. The pendant has the quote “well-behaved women seldom make history” on it, with Laurel Thatcher Ulrich credited beneath it. Similarly to the shirt, “women” and “history” are in a bigger font (see Fig. 2). It is being sold by a seller called DSD, whose main products seem to be similar jewelry, many of which are small, literature related products, with quotes from various books on them. This product, out of the three analyzed here, is probably the closest to how Ulrich meant for her quote to be interpreted. It is a small pendant that people are not going to be able to read
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