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Past Events

A Tribute to Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Solitude of Self

Sunday, November 11, 2001

Join Paris Press and the Sophia Smith Collection for a birthday tribute to Elizabeth Cady Stanton and a reading of her speech, Solitude of Self, featuring:

  • Susan Bourque, Provost and Dean of the Faculty of Smith College
  • Phyllis Curtin, World-renowned soprano and Dean Emerita of Boston University School for the Arts
  • Mary Clare Higgins, Mayor of Northampton
  • Patricia Holland, Co-editor of The Papers of Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Susan B. Anthony microfilm edition and guide
  • Kristi Nelson, Executive Director of the Women's Fund of Western Massachusetts
  • Jessica Walker, Senior at Holyoke High School
Elizabeth Cady Stanton, 1888
Elizabeth Cady Stanton, 1888 (Elizabeth Cady Stanton Papers)

When: Sunday, November 11, 2001 at 3:00 p.m.
Where: Browsing Room, Neilson Library
Smith College, Northampton, MA

Birthday reception to follow.

About Solitude of Self

Elizabeth Cady Stanton, co-founder of the women's movement in the United States, believed Solitude of Self to be the most important achievement of her lifetime. Throughout the speech, Stanton asserts that we face our most challenging moments alone, and it is the birthright of every person to be prepared for these moments - regardless of gender, race, religion, or wealth. If we are equally educated and equally trained on all fronts of life, then, says Stanton, we can call upon our inner resources when we need them most.

Elizabeth Cady Stanton delivered her speech, Solitude of Self, in January 1892, to the House Committee on the Judiciary, to the Senate Committee on Woman Suffrage, and to the National American Woman Suffrage Association before she resigned as its president. In 1915, thirteen years after Stanton's death, the U.S. Congress reprinted the speech from the Congressional Record and mailed 10,000 copies around the world.

In the margin of Solitude of Self, Susan B. Anthony wrote, "This is pronounced the strongest & most unanswerable argument & appeal ever made of mortal pen & tongue-for the full freedom & franchise of women."

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 © 2005 Sophia Smith Collection, Smith College, Northampton, MA 01063 Page last updated on Wednesday, 11 December 2013