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The First Spouse

Written on: February 29th, 2016 in Blog PostsEvents at the ArchivesResearch Room

(Dover, DE) Are American First Ladies a cultural mirror reflecting the role and popular perceptions of women of their eras? What happens when they are too outspoken or unconventional? On Saturday, March 5, at 10:30 a.m. Dr. Cynthia Newton will present a program at the Delaware Public Archives about the women who have served as First Ladies to the United States. This presentation examines these questions with reference to the White House tenure of Abigail Fillmore, Eleanor Roosevelt, and Betty Ford. Naturally, this program leads to speculation of what will happen to the role of First Spouse when the roles may be reversed and the individual in the position/role is a male.

Dr. Cynthia Newton is Associate Professor in Political Science at Wesley College in Dover. Her areas of expertise are American governmental institutions and public policy. Her research includes substantial work on obesity as an emerging public policy area, and more recently the oversight role of Congress concerning issues affecting Major League Baseball. Dr. Newton is a strong advocate of civic and experiential education, student government, and students’ rights.

The program is free to the public and will last approximately one hour. No reservations are required. For more information, contact Tom Summers (302) 744-5047 or e-mail

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