Megan Marshall Quotes.

1. "the middle child’s classic tendency to withdraw."
- Megan Marshall, The Peabody Sisters

2. "In Allston, as generous as he was with his praise and encouragement, Sophia had come face-to-face with the male art establishment and its aesthetic. She had encountered it before when she was hustled out of Thomas Doughty’s studio while a men’s painting class was in session. More recently, at a gathering in the Reverend Channing’s parlor, she had been stunned when the minister had quoted the influential British artist Henry Fuseli’s sneering observation that there was no fist in women’s painting—and then demanded Sophia’s response. Flustered, Sophia had sunk away into my shell, unable to speak, she confided in her journal. She had enough trouble summoning the confidence to paint each day, let alone defend women artists as a class. Channing’s question struck to the heart of Sophia’s ambivalence about taking the initiative to create original works of art. Virtually"
- Megan Marshall, The Peabody Sisters

3. "Elizabeth succeeded at last with Record of a School because she was performing a literary version of what she was beginning to recognize as her vocation in life: to nurture and promote the men she admired, helping them to achieve a greater range of action than she could ever hope to attain as a woman. Elizabeth didn’t receive the same recognition from Record of a School that she would have if it had been her school, her theory. But the men whose minds she hoped to capture would not have paid attention to a woman’s book about a girls’ school. And she might never have had the self-assurance to write such a book about a school of her own. Playing the role of facilitator—or Recorder, as she referred to herself in later editions—freed Elizabeth first to produce and then to promote the book more vigorously than she ever had one of her own, without appearing unfeminine or immodest in character, an aspect of her reputation that she continued to care about even as she habitually disregarded the niceties of dress. To"
- Megan Marshall, The Peabody Sisters

4. "Unconsciously, perhaps inevitably, Sophia accepted Allston’s standard. For Sophia, it had always been Doughty and Harding and Allston who were masterly. They embodied art in a way that the turbaned Catherine Scollay in her attic studio never could. If women had a recognized place in the art world it was as muse or model—or wife. Yet, with the exception of the Reverend Channing’s question, no one spoke of art in terms of gender. Because it was unacknowledged, the gap between a young woman with talent and a man of accomplishment could seem an unbridgeable chasm. It was safer for Sophia to paint covers for ladies’ card cases or, at most, copy paintings that offered a thrilling proximity to greatness. Neither would require an open admission of her own aspirations to greatness—aspirations that could easily go unfulfilled in the absence of adequate training. Sophia had seen what had happened to her oldest sister, whose naked desire to become all and more than all, that those she loved would have her be had exposed her to disappointment and failure. Sophia would not risk that. In"
- Megan Marshall, The Peabody Sisters

5. "her essential goodness, telling her that self-knowledge is the foundation of Religion, not self-hatred."
- Megan Marshall, The Peabody Sisters

6. "they come to the business of life & the application of knowledge they find that they are inferior—& all their studies have not given them that practical good sense & mother wisdom & wit which grew up with our grandmothers at the spinning wheel,"
- Megan Marshall, The Peabody Sisters

7. "What had become of the girl who sought out British Socinian texts all on her own, argued over Swedenborgian theology with adults three times her age, read the New Testament thirty times in one summer, and taught herself Hebrew so that she could make her own translation of the Old Testament? There had been many obstacles. Because of financial hardship, she had been thrown too early into the working world, teaching long hours when she might have studied and written more. And there was the fact of her sex. Without the option of college or a profession, Elizabeth had not known how or where to apply herself. She had looked to men of genius to confirm her talents and grown dependent on the daily consolations of friendship. She could see now that she had constantly craved . . . assurances that should have come from within. Yet"
- Megan Marshall, The Peabody Sisters

8. "All great acquisitions come from voluntary thought was Elizabeth’s guiding principle. She would not cultivate any motive for learning in her students besides curiosity, claiming that study for the sake of reward or in fear of punishment produced superficial rather than profound knowledge."
- Megan Marshall, The Peabody Sisters

9. "What she did not yet realize was that those boundaries were much looser for a child in the progressive circles of Salem and Boston, where a young girl who poured out her whole heart would be kindly received by adults eager to see proof of the innocent wisdom of childhood. As she grew older, Elizabeth would have to reckon with the fact that others began to find that same forthright manner disturbing in a young woman."
- Megan Marshall, The Peabody Sisters

10. "It mattered little to anyone outside the Transcendental coterie that Bronson Alcott had finally written something publishable—his Orphic Sayings—for the opening issue; or that an unemployed schoolteacher named Henry David Thoreau had his first piece published in its pages."
- Megan Marshall, The Peabody Sisters

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