The Heart of Woman

http://www.americanantiquarian.org/Exhibitions/Beauty/true.htm

A Map of the Open Country of a Woman’s Heart D. W. Kellogg, c. 1833–1842

Mmmm, methinks this map of a woman’s heart tells more about the artist.  It purportedly captures nineteenth-century ideas about womanhood in America. The caption reads, “The Open Country of Woman’s Heart, Exhibiting its internal communications, and the facilities and dangers to Travellers therein.”   According to this map, Love is at the center of a woman’s heart, and Sentimentality and Sentiment (including Good Sense, Discrimination, Hope, Enthusiasm, and Platonic Affection) take up a sizeable portion of the entire territory. The larger, treacherous areas of a woman’s heart are Selfishness and Coquetry,  attributes suggesting that all women are basically untrustworthy. The largest regions, Love of Admiration, Love of Dress, and Love of Display indicate womens’ essentially shallow nature. Written by a man then.  Though I don’t know that. I think it’s time to update this worn out cartography of the female of the species. Any takers?

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One thought on “The Heart of Woman

  1. lifeandwonderland

    Yes, a new map is on the order; but for me, creating a map of all women’s hearts is like making a portrait to represent all women’s faces. Each person, male or female is unique, and even there are some characterizations of gender, no generalizations can be made if one wants to be fair and respect individualism.
    Greetings.

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