Alessandra Stanizzi, Towards the frontier. Women and the bourgeois Spirit which educated the Far West


The discovery of gold in the mines of California, during the mid-nineteenth century, gave rise to a historical and cultural phenomenon of immense proportions, the so-called Gold Rush, which led thousands of people to colonize the wild West of the United States and to face a journey that often proved to be exhausting, dangerous and sometimes disappointing. This paper intends to analyze this phenomenon by focusing attention on the women who undertook this path, describing the difficulties faced and the choice of many of them, once arrived in those desolate places: to become teachers, thus transforming an unknown future into an educational mission, which for some of them was rooted into a commitment of ethical-religious nature, typical of that bourgeois and Puritan spirit that was at the origin of American history and culture


Keywords: Gold Rush; Frontier; Women; Bourgeois Spirit; Educational mission.

Published on: N. 31 New Series – Year XVI 2020 – Methods and practices, histories and perspectives