New Just Teach One: The Female Review

The new Just Teach One for Fall 2016 has been making the rounds on the listservs. We wanted to share it here in case anyone hasn’t seen it. The announcement includes details about the reading for the fall and links to reflections from instructors that participated in recent JTO readings.  

Dear Colleagues,

Several announcements from the Just Teach One Initiative :

First, we have new posts up about the teaching of our last two texts, Susanna Rowson’s Sincerity, and the November, 1786 issue of the Columbian Magazine.  Please check out our website for thoughtful posts by Siân Silyn Roberts, Keri Holt, Adam Lewis, Michelle Burnham, Michael Ditmore, Jonathan Beecher Field, Lisa West, Jon Blandford, Brian Yothers, David Lawrimore, Caroline Woidat, Karen Woods, Tom Hallock, Michelle Sizemore, Laura Stevens, and Eric Norton.  There is a lot of care and insight in these posts, with interesting descriptions of assignments and classroom discussions.

Posts about Rowson’s Sincerity can be seen here:

Posts about the November, 1786 issue of the Columbian Magazine can be seen here:

Please note: we are always interested in adding new posts, so if you teach one of the JTO texts and have reflections you’d like to share, please send along your thoughts, even if they concern a text launched in an earlier semester.

We are also happy to announce our Fall 2016 text: Herman Mann’s 1797 The female review: or, Memoirs of an American young lady; whose life and character are peculiarly distinguished–being a Continental soldier, for nearly three years, in the late American war . . . This work purports to be a memoir of Deborah Sampson, who, as “Robert Shurtliff,” served in the Continental Army at the end of the American Revolution.  In his biography of Sampson, the historian Alfred F. Young describes the book as “a novel based on fact,” noting that scenes are fabricated and drawn from other narratives of the time, like The Female Soldier (1750), the British narrative of the cross-dressing soldier Hannah Snell.  The JTO edition will be introduced by Jodi Schorb of the University of Florida, whose contribution will contextualize The Female Review in relation to emerging discourses on sex variation, Republican womanhood, the surging popularity of female soldier ballads, military life, and early Republican responses to war and social dislocation.

The text runs about 40,000 words (that’s just a bit longer than Charlotte Temple), and would probably require a week of class time, or at least two periods.  It would be suitable for classes on gender studies, life writing, the American Revolution and revolutionary/war literature, the early US novel, and science in literature.  (The Female Review was later republished by John Adams Vinton in a heavily annotated 19C edition; the JTO version restores the original to a manageable, readable format.)

The Common-Place website also includes two related pieces that might be of interest to potential teachers: Martha Tomhave Blauvelt’s review of Alex Myers’s Revolutionary: A Novel, an historical novel that imagines Sampson through a transgender lens, and Sarah M. S. Pearsall’s conversation with the late Alfred F. Young about Masquerade, his biography of Sampson.



If you’re interested in teaching The Female Review, or have further questions, please contact Ed White ( or Duncan Faherty (


Duncan Faherty & Ed White


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