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What Every Woman Knows

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(1908)

Written before women's suffrage, this play posits that "every woman knows" she is the invisible power responsible for the successes of the men in her life.

The Wylies, a well-to-do but uneducated Scottish family, are concerned about their daughter, Maggie, a plain young woman who they fear will remain a spinster. One night the Wylies discover that a serious young university student, John Shand, has been breaking into their home so that he can read books from their large library. Shand is penniless and cannot afford to buy books for his law school education. Maggie Wylie and John Shand come to an understanding: that her family will fund his education if, at the end of five years, he agrees to marry her.

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