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Excerpt from Oral History Interview with Miriam Bonner Camp, April 15, 1976. Interview G-0013. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007) See Entire Interview >>

Positive interpretation of single-sex education for women

Camp again discusses the nature of single sex education. Previously, Camp explained that women faculty members at the North Carolina College for Women and then at the Southern Summer School enjoyed the "nunnery feeling" of all-women educational settings. Here, she discusses the issue of sexuality, acknowledging rumors of lesbianism. To the contrary, Camp argues that she and the other women rarely felt the need for the other sex, and instead enjoyed their independence, which she states she lost a sense of when she was married later in life.

Citing this Excerpt

Oral History Interview with Miriam Bonner Camp, April 15, 1976. Interview G-0013. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007) in the Southern Oral History Program Collection, Southern Historical Collection, Wilson Library, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Full Text of the Excerpt

Well I was going to tell you (I got off the subject), I remember when The Well of Loneliness became popular and for about the first time people began talking about lesbianism. So all this talk about lesbianism, you know, sometimes you almost felt, "Well, maybe this close friendship with a woman, maybe people misinterpret it, you know." But actually, the sexual thing just didn't enter into it. And it seems maybe strange to people that are living perhaps what are considered more normal lives. But we were busy, we were happy. I don't think any of us specially felt the need for the [laughter] other sex.
MARY FREDERICKSON:
That's interesting.
MIRIAM BONNER CAMP:
Yes, it was strange, I mean, when I look back upon that. But it was very peaceful. My husband is an engineer, civil engineer, and like a lot of engineers he's very demanding, and everything has to be just so and so on. I'm no longer my own person the way I was then. I probably wouldn't have been my own person if I'd gotten out and gone into controversial things in the community; I probably wouldn't have lasted very long.