The maligned, the despised and the ostracised
Working-class white women, interracial relationships and colonial ideologies in nineteenth- and twentieth-century Liverpool
in The empire in one city?
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This chapter examines interracial relationships between white women and black men in Liverpool from the mid nineteenth-century onwards. It explores the prevailing ideas of 'race' between the 1850s and the 1950s and how these notions informed the development of an ideology that attempted to control what came to be seen as a social 'problem'. The chapter considers some of the debates that have emerged in recent historiography regarding the status of Liverpool as a cosmopolitan city within which interracial relationships will be positioned. It also examines the historical notions of 'race' including pseudo-scientific race theories and eugenics. The chapter assesses the conditions within which interracial relationships were facilitated throughout this period. It focuses on to those women involved in such relationships by exploring the ways in which strategies were developed to cope with the social ostracism they endured from family, friends and white society in general.

The empire in one city?

Liverpool’s inconvenient imperial past


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