This thesis analyzes three American housekeeping books—Lydia Maria Child's The American Frugal Housewife, Catherine Beecher and Harriet Beecher Stowe's The American Woman's Home, and Helen Campbell Stuart's The Easiest Way in Housekeeping and Cooking—as historical examples of technical writing. The study follows current recommendations for historical research in the field, namely, to analyze technical writing texts in consideration of their historical context. This involves determining what constituted technical writing in the nineteenth century; considering the publishing context of the study; and applying this definition to analyze three housekeeping books as technical manuals. These texts exemplify technical writing based on their functional purpose, to help readers perform work. Additionally, they incorporate verbal and visual rhetorical strategies distinctive of technical writing. Since the majority of women in the nineteenth century worked in their homes, these books served as their workplace manuals.
Master of Arts (M.A.)
College of Arts and Sciences
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Masters Thesis (Open Access)
Arts and Sciences -- Dissertations, Academic; Dissertations, Academic -- Arts and Sciences
Woods, Melanie C., "Nineteenth-century american housekeeping books : women's workplace manuals historical research in technical writing" (1998). Retrospective Theses and Dissertations. 2586.