Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)




Twentieth century Americans recognized problems created by both the subjected status women held by society and the harmful impact humanity had on natural resources and domains. America’s search for realization and solutions for the inherent problems associated with the devaluation of women and nature did not come quickly or easily; it took a path that wound around both traditional concepts and progressive insights. I argue in this thesis that the biography of Dr. Gladys C. Galligar demonstrates, on an intimate level, America’s dawning awareness of the necessity of a healthier environment and a more egalitarian society. As a biology researcher and educator, she participated in the development of the school of American ecology; as a professional and empowered woman, she was both benefactor and survivor of society’s struggle with gender. Her self-identity was the product of both the natural world and society, and as such she lived in the epicenter of the debate between tradition and progress.

Included in

History Commons



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