Challenging Unjust Authority and Creating a Profession
The emergence of the trained nurse as a new profession for women coincided with the transformation of hospitals from refuges for the sick and poor into treatment facilities. The hospital was an apt setting for learning nursing's fundamentals, but the domestic demands of the setting soon took precedence over nursing education. Nursing superintendents struggled to honor the right of pupil nurses to an education over the might of the hospital's demands. The 20th anniversary of the Trained Nurse Movement in 1893 proved the decisive moment when nursing superintendents created professional associations and gathered the nursing diaspora into a coherent force. Recourse to the law followed with nurses seeking legal validation of their authority over nursing education. Now, as then, a nurse's authority is a right that has to be protected when the might of individuals and institutions, both subtle and blatant, interferes with nurses caring for the well-being of society.