Cover: Unsentimental Reformer: The Life of Josephine Shaw Lowell, from Harvard University PressCover: Unsentimental Reformer in E-DITION

Unsentimental Reformer

The Life of Josephine Shaw Lowell

Product Details


$65.00 • £54.95 • €60.00

ISBN 9780674437487

Publication Date: 01/15/1998

296 pages


Available from De Gruyter »

Media Requests:

Related Subjects

Harvard University Press has partnered with De Gruyter to make available for sale worldwide virtually all in-copyright HUP books that had become unavailable since their original publication. The 2,800 titles in the “e-ditions” program can be purchased individually as PDF eBooks or as hardcover reprint (“print-on-demand”) editions via the “Available from De Gruyter” link above. They are also available to institutions in ten separate subject-area packages that reflect the entire spectrum of the Press’s catalog. More about the E-ditions Program »

Waugh is excellent at placing Lowell in her time, class, and place, with her desire to be ‘scientific’ and to distinguish the deserving from the undeserving needy. The author points out that Lowell faced and learned how to use the constraints of her gender, and how to adapt to and use the political system when necessary. Lowell’s achievement of these skills demonstrates how women without the vote could influence political matters through connections and mobilizing public support. Waugh has made very good use of the relevant primary and secondary materials.—V. P. Caruso, Choice

This study of one of the pivotal figures in late nineteenth century American social reform gives us a full and compelling account of how Lowell constructed new strategies to provide for the needs of the poor…In a variety of ways this fine book makes important contributions to our understanding of American social welfare history.—Kathryn Kish Sklar, Binghamton University

Here is a heroic figure whose life commitments to serving the poor have all too much resonance for our own society…An important contribution to the history of reform, to American women’s history, and to American biography. It fills an important gap in the literature on late nineteenth century reform.—Ellen Fitzpatrick, University of New Hampshire

Joan Waugh’s book is the first full, nuanced account of the life of Josephine Shaw Lowell, founder of the Charity Organization Party (1882)…Waugh’s fine biography rightly highlights the career of an important figure in turn-of-the-century charity movements and reform.—Alison M. Parker, American Historical Review

Recent News

Black lives matter. Black voices matter. A statement from HUP »

From Our Blog

A stack of five bestselling titles from Harvard University Press against a hot pink textured background

Ringing in the New Year with HUP’s 2022 Bestsellers

There is no better way for readers to usher in the new year than by looking back to the books that defined the last. For Harvard University Press, our 2022 bestsellers make up a diverse list of books across time and discipline.