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Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Lillian Moller Gilbreth

The kids and I have been reading Cheaper by the Dozen.  As a result, Solomon is now the proud owner of an ancient typewriter.  
My current research project is the thoughts and life of Lillian Molller Gilbreth, known to the wider world as the mother in Cheaper by the Dozen and Bells on Their Toes.  She is a fascinating woman, but so far I have not been able to track down as much as I'd like about her.  Born in the Victorian era to a wealthy Californian family, she got a PhD in psychology and became an expert in motion study while raising a family of twelve children.  
I DO NOT recommend the book Making Time; a life beyond Cheaper by the Dozen, a rather poisonous biography aimed at reappropriating Lillian Gilbreth's history for second wave feminists (the woman who wrote it has no idea what it is like to be a mother--she acts like reading while nursing is a major chore!).  Right now I have several books by Lillian herself on request from several libraries around the state.  We'll see what they turn up!     

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