Constitution and By-Laws of the Ladies' Physiological Institute, of Boston and Vicinity. Physiology, Ladies' Physiological Institute.

Constitution and By-Laws of the Ladies' Physiological Institute, of Boston and Vicinity.

Boston: Printed by Edward Mudge & Son, [1857]. A later edition. Original printed green wrappers, 7.38 x 4.63 inches, [1-2], [2], 3-16 pages. A little soiling and wear; some fly-specking to the rear wrapper; a little browning from the publisher's glue mounting the inserted leaf; a very good copy. Item #19319

Growing out of a project of lectures begun by pioneering physician Harriot Hunt in the 1830s, instituted in 1848 and incorporated in 1850, this organization sought "to promote among women a knowledge of the Human System, of the Laws of Life and Health, and of the means of preventing and relieving sickness and suffering." Despite substantial social pressure against the Institute, the organization provided lectures and instruction in anatomy, physiology, and hygiene. Helen Lefkowitz Horowitz in Rereading Sex: Battles over Sexual Knowledge and Suppression in Nineteenth-Century America (New York 2002) notes that such figures as Paulina Wright Davis (early active in abortion circles and women's property rights) had appeared before the Institute in the 1850s. Publication date from the first page of the front wrapper; inserted printed leaf mounted after the title page with the 1850 Act of Incorporation on the recto and the "List of Apparatus Belonging to the Institute" on the verso. (The 21 educational items range from "Model of a Woman, full size, capable of dissection," to a wired and mounted female skeleton, a prepared three-month fetus, to a wax model of a hand with erysipelas, and a phrenological bust.) This 1857 version of the Constitution preceded by separately-published versions from 1849 and 1851--each located in a single copy only, as with a couple of early related Institute publications. No Ladies' Physiological Institute items located in the Atwater Catalog.

Price: $450.00