Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Cassandra” as Want to Read:
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview


3.63  ·  Rating details ·  169 ratings  ·  18 reviews
The world knows Florence Nightingale as "the lady with the lamp"—the revered founder of nursing as a respectable profession for women. But few people are aware that Nightingale's career began only after years of struggle to free herself from her suffocating Victorian family. In this surprisingly passionate feminist essay (a "brilliant polemic," states Martha Vicinus), Nigh ...more
Paperback, 64 pages
Published January 1st 1993 by The Feminist Press at CUNY (first published 1852)
More Details... Edit Details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Cassandra, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Cassandra

Community Reviews

Showing 1-14
Average rating 3.63  · 
Rating details
 ·  169 ratings  ·  18 reviews

Sort order
Start your review of Cassandra
Aug 25, 2017 rated it really liked it
I used this for my final seminar paper in Victorian Literature. The tone is commanding as well as straightforward. She gets to the heart of the matter in a hurry. During a time when women were subjugated, and expected to fulfill the domestic duties of the household, this essay challenges the androcentric culture of the Victorians. I do not completely agree with her thoughts on how woman compare to men, but she holds herself as an equal to men yet is disappointed with how quickly women submit to ...more
A glimpse into Florence Nightingale's views about women. I don't agree with many of them, nonetheless, Nightingale was one of the first to throw a brick against the 'anti-sex-equality-wall', and it is good to remember how slow the process was, and how many people had to act before we get where we are now.

And I definitely recommend reading first an introduction by Myra Stark.
Nov 13, 2011 rated it liked it
This book took me by surprise. Many associations between Florence Nightengale and nursing come up, but rarely is she spoke of as an activist. This woman had the heart of lion, stuck in Victorian dress. Anyone who associates with woman's rights would enjoy this text. Also if you are in the field of nursing, her ideas are exceptional. I did not enjoy the angry tone of the book, nor did I agree with all her ideas, but I'm glad I read it. ...more
Cassandra Lashae
Apr 09, 2018 rated it really liked it
Since it's my namesake, I'm probably biased by wishing this had become an actual novel. I loved the essay, so relevant for feminism today, and an important study of human character in general. ...more
Sep 22, 2014 rated it really liked it
This is definitely a progressive and forward thinking text for its time, dealing with pervasive issues like gender equality and eschewing domesticity. It was just difficult to juxtapose the voice, which was dealing with middle class biases, and the issues at hand, which were all about women who weren't taken seriously. It's a slightly narrow view of the fight that all women were waging at the time. ...more
Michelle Benson
Sep 24, 2014 rated it liked it
I long for the day I can mark a book as read that wasn't for my history class ...more
Mar 03, 2015 rated it liked it
Shelves: abuse, school, feminism
Read for university paper.
This essay was in the textbook for my British lit class last semester in “the woman question” section and of course the name caught my attention but I didn’t get a chance to read it so when it was referenced in Virginia Woolf’s A Room of One’s Own it reminded me to pick it up. It’s very short but interesting in the verbalized frustrations of being a woman in the 19th century. A Room of One’s Own echos these sentiments and is honestly a lot better but still this is an interesting look at a Victor ...more
E.M. Sinclair
Mar 22, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Seminal work on feminist theory
May 25, 2010 rated it liked it
Florence Nightingale has been praised for all the great work she did and contributions to nursing. Cassandra reveals her feelings of the treatment of Victorian women at that time and the impetus for her achievements. It was because she was rebelling against mom and sister that she went abroad to do what she did.
Oct 30, 2015 rated it really liked it
This is a great pamphlet on the condition of upperclass Victorian women. It shows a lot of first wave feminist arguments. If you liked this though you should also read something by working women of the time. A great short poem called "The Lacemakers" is great for this. Reading this and the poem will really give you a better all round idea of the condition of women during the Victorian Era. ...more
Frankie Paradise
I read this for Victorian lit, but it is a pretty interesting argument for women's rights. Until reading this, I had no idea that Florence Nightingale was anything more than a nurse/healthcare activist honestly. ...more
Jun 01, 2009 rated it it was ok
This is a feminist pamphlet written by the famous Florence Nightingale. Honestly, it did not interest me very much.
Cate Neuhauser
May 07, 2012 rated it really liked it
It was a good story, and it is a great read for feminist studies
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »

Readers also enjoyed

  • Work: A Story of Experience
  • The Half-Caste
  • Wonderful Adventures of Mrs. Seacole in Many Lands
  • The Familiars
  • Cometh Up As a Flower
  • Musée des Beaux Arts
  • The Playboy of the Western World
  • Easter, 1916
  • The Second Coming
  • Success: One Day at a Time
  • The Beautiful (The Beautiful, #1)
  • The History of Mary Prince: A West Indian Slave Narrative
  • The Soul of a Woman
  • An Accidental Soldier
  • The Cheater's Guide to Love
  • Winners Never Cheat: Everyday Values We Learned as Children But May Have Forgotten
  • The Civilized Guide to Tabletop Gaming: Rules Every Gamer Must Live By
  • Scrivi sempre a mezzanotte: Lettere d'amore e desiderio
See similar books…
Florence Nightingale, OM, RRC was an English nurse, writer and statistician. She came to prominence during the Crimean War for her pioneering work in nursing, and was dubbed "The Lady with the Lamp" after her habit of making rounds at night to tend injured soldiers. Nightingale laid the foundation stone of professional nursing with the principles summarised in the book Notes on Nursing. The Nighti ...more

Related Articles

Thirty-four years after the publication of her dystopian classic, The Handmaid's Tale, Atwood returns to continue the story of Offred. We talked...
367 likes · 59 comments
No trivia or quizzes yet. Add some now »
“Woman has nothing but her affections,--and this makes her at once more loving and less loved.” 15 likes
“Women dream until they have no longer the strength to dream; those dreams against which they so struggle, so honestly, vigorously, and conscientiously, and so in vain, yet which are their life, without which they could not have lived; those dreams go at last. All their plans and visions seem vanished, and they know not where; gone and they cannot recall them. And they are left without the food either of reality or of hope.” 0 likes
More quotes…