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5 Questions with Cassie Yacovazzi

I recently exchanged emails with Cassie Yacovazzi about her new book, Escaped Nuns: True Womanhood and the Campaign Against Convents in Antebellum America (Oxford, 2018). Cassie Yacovzzi is Assistant Professor of History at the University of South Florida, Sarasota-Manatee. She Studies the intersection of cultural, religious, and women's history in the nineteenth and twentieth-century US. 


PC: Escaped Nuns  situates its topic in a much deeper set of contexts. You show that the anti-convent moment and broader anti-nun sentiments must be placed in the larger drive for reform in the antebellum period. "Presenting something -- anything -- as a threat to female purity, marriage, and family served to legitimize any reform measure, from antislavery to temperance to anti-Catholicism," as you write on page 56. Is a concern for the role of women and the stability of marriage at the center of antebellum reform? How does anti-Catholicism, as you've studied it in Escaped Nuns, cha…

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