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3rd Read - Passage Anotation

Focus Question

How did the roles of Women change during the Civil War?

3rd Read PURPOSE

Looking for the meaning. What does the this text help you under stand about the roles of women during the Civil War?


Self-Monitoring Strategies can help you check your understanding as you read.


Little Women

an excerpt

Little Women tells the story of the four March sisters—Meg, Beth,Amy, Jo—and their mother, who live in Massachusetts at the time of the Civil War. Their father, serving for the Union, has been taken ill and Mrs. March is summoned to nurse him. With money very scarce, the family worries about how to afford the expenses

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    The short afternoon wore away. All other errands were done, and Meg and her mother busy at some necessary needlework, while Beth and Amy got tea, and Hannah finished her ironing with what she called a “slap and a bang,” but still Jo did not come. They began to get anxious . . . [S]he came walking inwith a very queer expression of countenance, for there was a mixture of fun and fear, satisfaction and regretin it, which puzzled the family as much as did the roll of bills she laid before her mother, saying with a little choke in her voice, “That’s my contribution toward making Father comfortable and bringing him home!”

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    “My dear, where did you get it? Twenty-five dollars! Jo, I hope you haven’t done anything rash ?”

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    “No, it’s mine honestly. I didn’t beg, borrow, or steal it. I earned it, and I don’t think you’ll blame me, for I only sold what was my own."

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    As she spoke, Jo took off her bonnet, and a general outcry arose, for all her abundant hair was cut short.

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    “Your hair! Your beautiful hair!” “Oh, Jo, how could you?Your one beauty.” “My dear girl, there was no need of this.” “She doesn’t look like my Jo any more, but I love her dearly for it!”

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    As everyone exclaimed, and Beth hugged the cropped head tenderly, Jo assumed an indifferent air, which did not deceive anyone a particle, and said, rumpling up the brown bush and trying to look as if she liked it, “It doesn’t affect the fate of the nation, so don’t wail, Beth. It will be good for my vanity, I was getting too proud of my mane. It will do my brains good to have that mop taken off. My head feels deliciously light and cool, and the barber said I could soon have a curly crop, which will be boyish, becoming, and easy to keep in order. I’m satisfied, so please take the money and let’s have supper.”

    “Tell me all about it, Jo. I am not quite satisfied, but I can’t blame you, for I know how willingly you sacrificed your vanity, as you call it, to your love. But, my dear, it was not necessary, and I’m afraid you will regret it one of these days,” said Mrs.March

    “No, I won’t!” returned Jo stoutly, feeling much relieved that her prank was not entirely condemned.

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    As she spoke, Jo took off her bonnet, and a general outcry arose, for all her abundant hair was cut short.