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Pity their alibi Options
D00M
Posted: Thursday, October 11, 2018 7:24:04 AM

Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 3/24/2017
Posts: 1,603
Neurons: 7,558
Hello respected teachers,

What does the last sentence of the following paragraph mean?

And that alteration both put new pressures on women and granted them new opportunities. As in earlier English history, women in the Romantic period were provided only limited schooling, were subjected to a rigid code of sexual behavior, and (especially after marriage) were bereft of legal rights. In this period women began, as well, to be deluged by books, sermons, and magazine articles that insisted vehemently on the physical and mental differences between the sexes and instructed women that, because of these differences, they should accept that their roles in life involved child rearing, housekeeping, and nothing more. (Of course, in tendering this advice promoters of female domesticity conveniently ignored the definitions of duty that industrialists imposed on the poor women who worked in their mills.) Yet a paradoxical byproduct of the connections that the new nationalist rhetoric forged between the well-being of the state and domestic life was that the identity of the patriot became one a woman might attempt, with some legitimacy, to claim. Within the framework created by the new accounts of English national identity, a woman's private virtues now had a public relevance. They had to be seen as crucial to the nation's welfare. Those virtues might well be manifested in the work of raising patriotic sons, but, as the thousands of women in this period who made their ostensibly natural feminine feelings of pity their alibi for participation in abolitionism demonstrated, they could be turned to nontraditional uses as well.


The custom of speaking is the original and only just standard of any language. Joseph Priestly- Rudiments of EG, 1761.
Drag0nspeaker
Posted: Thursday, October 11, 2018 7:52:48 AM

Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 9/12/2011
Posts: 30,133
Neurons: 176,593
Location: Livingston, Scotland, United Kingdom
It is difficult to read, isn't it?
It looks like it should have some punctuation - but I can't decode where the commas need to be . . .

However, I can break it down to make it more understandable.

"Pity their alibi" is not a phrase - it's two noun phrases.

Those virtues might well be manifested in the work of raising patriotic sons, but, as the thousands of women in this period who made their ostensibly natural feminine feelings of pity their alibi for participation in abolitionism demonstrated, they could be turned to nontraditional uses as well.

Those virtues might well be manifested in the work of raising patriotic sons, but they could be turned to nontraditional uses as well.
This is shown by the thousands of women in this period who participated in abolitionism.
They used their feelings of pity as an alibi in doing this work.
These feelings, superficially or outwardly, appear to be specifically feminine traits.


Wyrd bið ful aræd - bull!
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