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Gender, disorder, and urban amusement in eighteenth-century london
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Each summer, a “perpetual fair” plagued eighteenth-century London, a city in transition overrun by a burgeoning population. City officials attempted to control disorderly urban amusement according to their own gendered understandings of order and morality. Frequently derided as locations of dangerous femininity disrupting masculine commerce, fairs withstood regulation attempts. Fairs were important in the lives of ordinary Londoners as sites of women’s work, sociability, and local and national identity formation. Rarely studied as vital to London’s modernization, urban fairs are a microcosm of London’s transforming society demonstrating how metropolitan changes were popularly contested. This study contributes to our understanding of popular culture and modernization in Britain during the formative years of its global empire. Drawing on legal records, popular literature, visual representations, and newspapers, this study places official discourse regarding urban amusement into the context of broader cultural understandings of gender and social hierarchies, commerce, public morality, and the urban environment. Entertainments, such as theatre, waxwork displays, and “monsters” are examined as cultural representations that disseminated ideas about “Britishness” and empire to a diverse audience. Such entertainment is often overlooked in works focused on elite culture or exhibits in the later era of World’s Fairs. This book demonstrates a thriving world of exhibition in the eighteenth century, which is a vital component to understanding later expositions. Examples drawn from literary and visual culture make this an engaging study for scholars and students of late Stuart and early Georgian Britain, urban and gender history, World’s Fairs, and cultural studies.

Modernity and the Gendering of Knowledge
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This book examines the roles and activities of women in British museums between 1850 and 1914. It shows women were active as employees, volunteers, donors, visitors, and patrons of museums, and examines the ways in which the growth of archaeology and anthropology in museums affected women, as well as their role in museums inspired by John Ruskin. It argues that to recover the extent of women’s agency in museums, we need to think of museums as distributed networks of people and objects; activities and objects outside as well as inside the museum institution worked to create knowledge and subjectivity. Such an approach reveals the rich new ways in which museums were developed by women, who brought new types of object such as social historical artefacts, and new ways of valuing and communicating those objects, as well as new concerns with community engagement and outreach. Yet the book also outlines the limits of women’s museum roles, showing how they were unable to have much influence over large, national museums, and colonised instead small, regional museums, especially those situated in slum areas. Nevertheless, it argues that women and museums between them formulated a distinctive arena for the understanding of modernity, in contrast to many other manifestations of modernity, and that museums and women helped to make each other modern.

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Same-sex desire in the British Armed Forces, 1939–45
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This book takes a contextual, time-specific approach to the study of same-sex desire in the British armed forces. Such an approach is now considered to be de rigueur for the historian of sexuality. The book first examines the medical, legal and cultural understandings of same-sex activity and identity in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. It then focuses on the life of service personnel; how they lived, loved and survived within the armed forces. Among other themes, the book examines the importance of homosociability and the mechanics of passing. It explores the experiences of personnel during moments when the veil could be lifted, whether on leave, on stage, away from authority, in foreign climes or simply away from the strictures of familial authority. The book further interrogates how men and women deemed to desire members of the same sex were conceptualised and treated by the armed forces. It uses court-martial records, court transcripts, official papers and personal testimony to map out how those caught out by the system were understood and treated. Finally, the book provides a clearer picture of how self-identified queer personnel and those who engaged in homosex experienced the Second World War when on duty, at play and when experiencing the sharp end of military law.

Race, nation and beauty contests, 1929–70
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The Caribbean Post's treatment of West Indian femininity reflected the growing significance of the beauty contest in the British Caribbean. Phyllis Woolford, 'Miss British Caribbean' of 1948 was pictured on the cover of the Post, epitomising modern Caribbean womanhood. This book examines the links between beauty and politics in the Anglophone Caribbean, providing a cultural history of Caribbean beauty competitions. It discusses the earliest Caribbean beauty competition, 'Miss Jamaica', launched in 1929 on the cusp of Jamaican cultural blossoming, and explores the emerging radical feminist voices amidst the cultural revolution. The 'Miss Trinidad' beauty competition, started in 1946, doubled as the search for an annual 'Carnival Queen', and represented the power of the moneyed white elite against an emergent black political force. The image that emerges of Barbados's 'Carnival Queen' contest is of a decidedly bourgeois contest, in which the 'creme de la creme' of Marcus Jordan's account were the most esteemed 'young ladies' of middle-class society. It examines the institutionalisation of the 'Ten Types' model and provides examples of copycat competitions elsewhere in the Caribbean. The 'Ten Types - Miss Ebony' contest was championed as a lesson in Jamaican racial democracy for other, less advanced, West Indian audiences. The book highlights the radical vantage point of exiled Trinidadian-born communist-feminist Claudia Jones who launched a Caribbean beauty competition in London. The burgeoning black beauty culture of London was imagined, through the West Indian Gazette as a pragmatic means of acquiring the respectable appearance that was 'race-pride' work.

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Reimagining intimacy in Scotland, 1880–1914
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This book provides the first group portrait of the late Victorian and Edwardian feminists and socialists who campaigned against the moral conservatism of Victorian Scotland. They include Bella and Charles Bream Pearce, prominent Glasgow socialists and disciples of an American-based mystic who taught that religion needed to be ‘re-sexed’; Jane Hume Clapperton, a feminist freethinker with advanced views on birth control and women’s right to sexual pleasure; and Patrick Geddes, founder of an avant-garde Edinburgh subculture and co-author of an influential scientific book on sex. The consideration of their lives and work undertaken here forces a reappraisal of our understanding of sexual progressivism in Britain in a number of important ways. It affirms that a precondition of ‘speaking out’ about sex was the rejection of orthodox Christianity, with alternative forms of belief providing spaces in which a new morality could be fashioned. It disrupts the long-standing perception of the fin de siècle as an era of generational challenge, highlighting the importance of considering older radicalisms, such as freethought. Finally, it emphasises the regulatory role played by socialist and feminist organisations, reluctant to reinscribe past associations between political radicalism and immorality. This meant that despite their reforming zeal, Scotland’s sexual progressives often adhered to respectable norms, deferring their reimagined intimate relationships to an idealised future.

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Youth, leisure and identity in the inter-war years
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This original and fresh approach to the emotions of adolescence focuses on the leisure lives of working-class boys and young men in the inter-war years. Being Boys challenges many stereotypes about their behaviour. It offers new perspectives on familiar and important themes in interwar social and cultural history, ranging from the cinema and mass consumption to boys' clubs, personal advice pages, street cultures, dancing, sexuality, mobility and the body. It draws on many autobiographies and personal accounts and is particularly distinctive in offering an unusual insight into working-class adolescence through the teenage diaries of the author's father, which are interwoven with the book's broader analysis of contemporary leisure developments. Being Boys will be of interest to scholars and students across the humanities and social sciences and is also relevant to those teaching and studying in the fields of child development, education, and youth and community studies.

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Gender, welfare and surveillance in the twentieth century

For much of the twentieth century women police often played a key role in the detection and prevention of child abuse, neglect and the 'policing of families'. This book examines the professional roles, identities, activities and experiences of women police in the United Kingdom. It comments on the gendering of modern surveillance technologies, on the relationship between justice and welfare, and on the changing situation of women in the twentieth century. The book shows that assumptions about class, status, gender and sexuality were both challenged and reinforced by women police. Although institutional structures and hierarchies - including those of gender -shaped the women police officers' professional experiences, the senior officers achieved considerable success in creating their own professional networks. The book examines the status and 'respectability' associated with women's work in the police service, and focuses on personal testimony in order to discuss women's perceptions of themselves. It analyses women's operations within the technologies of physical surveillance, dealing with both uniform beat patrol and undercover observations. The regulation of specific groups was done through policewomen's 'specialist' role: firstly, the policing of family, youth and child welfare; and secondly, the regulation of sexuality in relation to adult women. Given that police duties were shaped by legislative frameworks and by institutional strategies, opportunities to transform daily practice were ultimately limited. Despite positive and approbatory statements from women officers regarding integration, women as a whole were far less likely to be promoted than male colleagues in the 1970s and 1980s.

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This book draws on original research into women’s workplace protest to deliver a new account of working-class women’s political identity and participation in post-war England. In doing so, the book contributes a fresh understanding of the relationship between feminism, workplace activism and trade unionism during the years 1968–85. The study covers a period that has been identified with the ‘zenith’ of trade union militancy. The women’s liberation movement (WLM) also emerged in this period, which produced a shift in public debates about gender roles and relations in the home and the workplace. Industrial disputes involving working-class women have been commonly understood as evidence of women’s growing participation in the labour movement, and as evidence of the influence of second-wave feminism on working-class women’s political consciousness. However, the voices and experiences of female workers who engaged in workplace protest remain largely unexplored. The book addresses this space through detailed analysis of four industrial disputes that were instigated by working-class women. It shows that labour force participation was often experienced or viewed as a claim to political citizenship in late modern England. A combination of oral history and written sources is used to illuminate how everyday experiences of gender and class antagonism shaped working-class women’s political identity and participation.

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Secularism, religion and women's emancipation, England 1830–1914
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This book studies a distinctive brand of women's rights that emerged out of the Victorian Secularist movement, and looks at the lives and work of a number of female activists, whose renunciation of religion shaped their struggle for emancipation. Anti-religious or secular ideas were fundamental to the development of feminist thought, but have, until now, been almost entirely passed over in the historiography of the Victorian and Edwardian women's movement. In uncovering an important tradition of freethinking feminism, the book reveals an ongoing radical and free love current connecting Owenite feminism with the more ‘respectable’ post-1850 women's movement and the ‘New Women’ of the early twentieth century.

Pacifist feminism in Britain, 1870–1902
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This book explores the pervasive influence of pacifism on Victorian feminism. It provides an account of Victorian women who campaigned for peace, and of the many feminists who incorporated pacifist ideas into their writing on women and gender. The book explores feminists' ideas about the role of women within the empire, their eligibility for citizenship, and their ability to act as moral guardians in public life. It shows that such ideas made use – in varying ways – of gendered understandings of the role of force and the relevance of arbitration and other pacifist strategies. The book examines the work of a wide range of individuals and organisations, from well-known feminists such as Lydia Becker, Josephine Butler and Millicent Garrett Fawcett to lesser-known figures such as the Quaker pacifists Ellen Robinson and Priscilla Peckover.