“Sweet Cement”: Occasioning Bathsheba Bowers’s An Alarm Sounded to Prepare the Inhabitants of the World to Meet the Lord in the Way of His Judgments

  • Nicholas K. Mohlmann


The eighteenth-century eccentric and Quaker writer Bathsheba Bowers persists, despite the obscurity and scarcity of her written work. Although she supposedly wrote many texts, only Bowers’s 1709 spiritual autobiography, An Alarm Sounded to Prepare the Inhabitants of the World to Meet the Lord in the Way of His Judgments survives. Bowers in her writing as in her life refused easy categorization and rejected traditional markers of social and religious status. This essay argues we might attribute Bowers’s endurance to the completeness with which she occupies a liminal position, writing in the space between public and private discourse, pride and piety, autobiography and prophecy, masculinity and femininity, poetry and prose. The author concludes An Alarm is useful in its anomaly as a record of a colonial American woman’s struggle to articulate a profound, idiosyncratic experience in a time and place where such experiences were not often given a voice.

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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Nicholas K. Mohlmann
    • 1
  1. 1.The University of West FloridaPensacolaUSA

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