By Deborah Lawrence
For a very long time, the yank West was once frequently pointed out with white masculinity, yet as extra women’s narratives of westward enlargement got here to mild, students revised in simple terms patriarchal interpretations. Writing the path maintains during this vein by way of offering a comparative literary research of 5 frontier narratives---Susan Magoffin’s Down the Santa Fe path and into Mexico, Sarah Royce’s A Frontier girl, Louise Clappe’s The Shirley Letters, Eliza Farnham’s California, In-doors and Out, and Lydia Spencer Lane’s I Married a Soldier---to discover the ways that women’s responses to the western atmosphere differed from men’s.Throughout their very diversified journeys---from an eighteen-year-old bride and self-styled “wandering princess” at the Santa Fe path, to the mining camps of northern California, to garrison lifestyles within the Southwest---these ladies moved out in their conventional positions as items of masculine tradition. at first disoriented, they quickly begun the complicated strategy of assimilating to a brand new atmosphere, altering perspectives of energy and authority, and making houses in wasteland conditions.Because critics are inclined to think of nineteenth-century women’s writings as confirmations of domestic and balance, they disregard facets of women’s textualizations of themselves which are dynamic and contingent on circulate via house. because the narratives in Writing the path illustrate, women’s frontier writings depict geographical, religious, and mental flow. via tracing the trips of Magoffin, Royce, Clappe, Farnham, and Lane, readers are uncovered to the subversive power of shuttle writing and are available to a brand new realizing of gender roles at the nineteenth-century frontier.