Publisher description for Charity girl / Michael Lowenthal.
Bibliographic record and links to related information available from the Library of Congress catalog
Information from electronic data provided by the publisher. May be incomplete or contain other coding.
Charity Girl examines one of the darkest periods in our history,
when patriotic fervor and fear led to devastating consequences.
During World War I, the U.S. government went on a moral and medical
campaign, quarantining and incarcerating young women who were
thought to have venereal diseases. Most were called "charity girls," or
working-class girls who happened to have had relationships with
infected men. Through the eyes of one fictional charity girl, this novel
explores an astonishing time.
Frieda Mintz, a Jewish seventeen-year-old bundle wrapper at
Jordan Marsh in Boston, spends one impulsive night with an infected
soldier. Soon after, she is tracked down and sent to a makeshift detention
center, where she is subject to invasive physical exams, poor living
conditions, and a creeping erosion of all she thought she knew about
herself. Buoying her, though, is a cast of women as strong as they are
diverse, and they soon teach one another about dependence, and
Charity Girl lays bare an ugly part of our past, when the government
exercised a questionable level of authority at the expense of its
citizens" rights. The book casts long shadows and explores the most
important, urgent questions of desire, freedom, and identity.
Library of Congress subject headings for this publication:
Sexually transmitted diseases -- Patients -- United States -- Fiction.
Women patients -- United States -- Fiction.
Sexually transmitted diseases -- Government policy -- United States -- Fiction.
Sexually transmitted diseases -- United States -- History -- Fiction.