Deborah Nelson is associate professor of English at the University of Chicago. She is the author of Pursuing Privacy in Cold War America.
"Thanks to Nelson, we now know that these 'tough' women share the trait of unsentimentality, which is not a character defect, as their critics often claimed, but a principled commitment, even a style: austere, pitiless, clinical, unwavering. Frankly feminist, Tough Enough argues that while sentimentalism has earned enormous critical attention, the unsentimental has largely gone unprocessed by literary critics and theorists. This superb book about women, style, criticism, politics, and misogyny is the beginning of the end of that."--Bonnie Honig, author of Antigone, Interrupted "Tough Enough is a brilliant defense of coldness. Nelson gathers together six extraordinarily well-known modern women who, one way or another, and often in deep--and sometimes conspicuous--concert, championed theological, philosophical, and political principles, as well as aesthetic practices, which together constitute an important school of the unsentimental. For those who are devoted to these six figures, who can't get enough of them, and who always knew that they somehow belonged together, this illuminating book will be welcomed as a revelation and confirmation."--Jeff Nunokawa, author of Note Book