Women and the Sea logo
Introduction
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Myths and Mermaids
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Life in Port
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Going to Sea
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Lighthouse Keepers
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Changing Roles for Women
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Women in the Military
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Women in Wartime Production
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Early Yachting and Racing
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Women and the Sea in the 20th Century
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Timeline
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Resources
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For centuries, the struggle to survive the elements and sail the world's waters was depicted as a conflict between men and the sea. Explorers, sailors, and maritime merchants were assumed to be male; when it came to affairs of the sea, a woman's place was safe at home.

But women's diaries and journals reveal a very different story. From the days of myth and superstition to the modern era of documented fact, women have played an active—in fact, an indispensable—role in maritime affairs. Once the inspiration behind men's maritime feats, women have moved on to have a dramatic impact on the naval world and economy through their work in port towns, their activities as seamen in disguise, and their skilled help as merchant and whaling wives. In the last century, women have not only served with pride in the navies and merchant marines of the world, they have also taken part in sea exploration and ocean challenges such as the America's Cup—activities that embody the age-old struggle of humankind against the sea.




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