Mijn Lieve Lezeressen! Mijn Jonge Vriendinnen!

: Het Nederlandse vrouwbeeld in het 19e eeuwse tijdschrift Penélopé, of maandwerk aan het vrouwelijke geslacht toegewijd

  • S.M. Ram

Student thesis: Master's Thesis


This thesis was carried out at the end of the master study Cultural Studies (Algemene
Cultuurwetenschappen) and has been an addition to the studies of the late decades in which
the interest of females in literature has been researched. The purpose of this research was to
analyze the nineteenth-century image of females in the womens magazine Penélopé, of
maandwerk aan het vrouwelijk geslacht toegewijd against the life of the founder and editor of
the magazine Anna Barbara van Meerten-Schilperoort (1778-1853). Van Meerten-Schilperoort
was known for the many articles and books she had written during her life. The theme in her
works had always been one of education and in her magazine she continued to do so but her
target audience hereby were women. In Penélopé she provided her readers with moralistic
articles in two parts: needlework and reading. In the first she gave her readers instructions of
making household items like cushions, footstools and more. In the latter she provided her
readers with information and designations how to become a correct mother and educator for the
children. This research investigated to what extent this female image in the magazine matched
with the way of life and the publications of editor Anna Barbara van Meerten-Schilperoort.
In the research the conditions and developments of the ideal image of women in the relevant
period has been analyzed and the studies of G. Dorleijn en K. van Rees Het Nederlandse
literaire veld 1800-2000 were used for the theoretical framework to analyze the literary field.
This ended up in an investigation of the start and development of the medium magazine with
special attention for the development of the womensmagazine using the study of Lotte Jensen
as a main line information. The study of G.J. Johannes was used to investigate to which sort of
magazine Penélopé could be classified.
Examples of lyrics from Penélopé which included a clearly position of Van Meerten-
Schilperoorts view, were used for analyzing and has been held against her way of life.
Particularly in relation to the aspect of the image of women in the contemporary society,.
The main conclusion that could be drawn from this study was the fact that Van Meerten-
Schilperoorts drive tot educate led her tot the creation of a magazine that provided women with
knowledge to meet the ideal image of women. This ideal image placed women as mothers and
educators in the family and Van Meerten-Schilperoort maintained this image. She was
convinced that women were not in a position to write and they had to stick with the main
purpose in life as a mother and head of the household. But some female writers had an
exceptional position because of the positive contribution to society. Van Meerten-Schilperoort
had the strong opinion she was such an exception with her writing and in all her works she tried
to entlighten the life of the nineteencentury woman by giving information and education but
always within the standards and values of the contemporary society.
Date of Award24 Sep 2019
Original languageDutch
Awarding Institution
  • Department Art History and Literature
SupervisorLizet Duyvendak (Supervisor) & Jan Oosterholt (Examinator)


  • literature

Cite this

Mijn Lieve Lezeressen! Mijn Jonge Vriendinnen!: Het Nederlandse vrouwbeeld in het 19e eeuwse tijdschrift Penélopé, of maandwerk aan het vrouwelijke geslacht toegewijd
Ram, S. M. (Author). 24 Sep 2019

Student thesis: Master's Thesis