Date of Award

Spring 5-15-2020

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)



First Advisor

Daniel Hurewitz

Second Advisor

Laura Schor

Academic Program Adviser

Karen Kern


Divorce was a remedy employed by working-class Americans in the 1950s when their marital expectations went unmet. Spouses left emotionally, physically, or sexually abusive marriages. Expectations for marriage also centered around assumptions based on gender. Working-class women showed how divorce could be used as a tool of liberation and empowerment.



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