Publication Date


Document Type

Masters Thesis


School for Social Work


Women-United States-Social conditions-19th century, Women-United States-Social conditions-20th century, United States-History-1865-1921, Women-Mental health services-United States, Women-United States-Psychology, Women, Historical, Suffragette, Women's issues, Mental health, Turn of the century, New woman, Roles, Perception, Women-Suffrage-United States


This analysis examines the historical mental health needs that emerged for women at the turn of the 19th century as a result of drastic changes in the tenor of the United States. The research explores literature pertaining to women from 1890-1920 in the United States and relates to four main topic areas as a way to examine trends and patterns in mental health needs and supports at the time in history. The Historical Research approach is well suited for this research as the specific goal of the study is to examine the historical sources for patterns and trends to better inform the present (Rubin and Babbie, 2013, p. 247). As an historical study, use of primary source journals, magazines, newspapers and other communication sources provide information about how the study subject was treated during the historical time of interest. Women's changing roles and the perceptions that society had of them created challenges that lead to necessary mental health treatments and support. The literature is used to further explore the patterns and trends found in the primary sources. Through an examination of primary source literature of Presidential Election 2012, connections are made between two significant periods of time sighting the implications for the importance of social work practice.




ii, 51 p. Thesis (M.S.W.)--Smith College School for Social Work, 2013. Includes bibliographical references (p. 49-51)