Participant Info

First Name
Last Name
Wilkes University
Website URL
19th-century US, gender, women's history, cultural history, print culture, publishing, media, consumerism
Additional Contact Information

Personal Info

About Me

Amy Sopcak-Joseph is assistant professor of history at Wilkes University in Wilkes-Barre, PA.  She is interested in gender and print culture in eighteenth- and nineteenth-century America.  Her work has been supported by research fellowships from the Library Company of Philadelphia, American Antiquarian Society, Winterthur Library, Virginia Historical Society, and the Northeast Regional Fellowship Consortium.

She is working on her book manuscript, Fashioning American Women: Godey’s Lady’s Book, Female Consumers, and Periodical Publishing in the Nineteenth Century.  She positions Godey’s Lady’s Book, the most popular antebellum women’s magazine, as central to the emergence of modern advertising and gendered consumerism. This project brings together the histories of gender, periodical publishing, and the early American economy to trace how publisher Louis Godey deviated from his colleagues and increasingly looked at women as eager participants in the market economy. Consequently, the parlor magazine became phenomenally popular among middle-class women. The Lady’s Book helped sculpt their modes of consumerism; it connected women to goods and turned many into saleswomen themselves.

Recent Publications

“Reconstructing and Gendering the Distribution Networks of Godey’s Lady’s Book in the Nineteenth Century,” Book History 22 (2019): 161-195.

  • Winner of Book History‘s 2019 Graduate Student Essay Prize.


“Following the Fashions: A Basic American Pastime,” The Junto: A Group Blog on Early American History, September 14, 2018.

Media Coverage
Country Focus
Expertise by Geography
United States
Expertise by Chronology
4, 5
Expertise by Topic
Book History, Economic History, Gender, Women