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Femininity, Crime and Self-Defence in Victorian Literature and Society
 
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Femininity, Crime and Self-Defence in Victorian Literature and Society
From Dagger-Fans to Suffragettes
 
Series: Crime Files
 
Palgrave Macmillan
 
 
 
 
 
26 Oct 2012
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£53.00
|Hardback In Stock
  
9780230300316
||
 
 
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DescriptionReviewsContentsAuthors

The topic of women and danger has long fascinated historians. This book innovatively situates both well-known and more obscure themes within the cultural context of the development of self-defence for ladies during the period from circa 1850 to 1914. Elizabeth Robins, Mona Caird and Anne Brontë considered the role of physiognomy in spotting rogue suitors, the nature of feminine anger and the dangers inside and outside the home. H.G. Wells's controversial novel, Ann Veronica (1909), is refreshingly re-examined as a testament to the growth of women's sports while the accompanying proliferation of women's martial arts classes was promoted by Edith Garrud, the trainer for the suffragette Bodyguard. Richard Marsh's detective, Judith Lee, a lip-reader and jujitsu practitioner, has been likened to Sherlock Holmes; her encounters with the Edwardian criminal underworld are explored here. Emelyne Godfrey introduces major themes in this area, showcasing a wealth of literary sources, artefacts and archival documents.


Description

The topic of women and danger has long fascinated historians. This book innovatively situates both well-known and more obscure themes within the cultural context of the development of self-defence for ladies during the period from circa 1850 to 1914. Elizabeth Robins, Mona Caird and Anne Brontë considered the role of physiognomy in spotting rogue suitors, the nature of feminine anger and the dangers inside and outside the home. H.G. Wells's controversial novel, Ann Veronica (1909), is refreshingly re-examined as a testament to the growth of women's sports while the accompanying proliferation of women's martial arts classes was promoted by Edith Garrud, the trainer for the suffragette Bodyguard. Richard Marsh's detective, Judith Lee, a lip-reader and jujitsu practitioner, has been likened to Sherlock Holmes; her encounters with the Edwardian criminal underworld are explored here. Emelyne Godfrey introduces major themes in this area, showcasing a wealth of literary sources, artefacts and archival documents.


Reviews

"Femininity, Crime and Self-Defense is a superb addition to New Woman studies and a potential rich resource for scholars in late-Victorian and Edwardian literary scholarship." - Lena Wånggren, University of Edinburgh, UK
 
"Opening up new areas for research in the fields of women's history, but also detective fiction and urban studies, this book's major contribution to Victorian and Edwardian studies is in unsettling the reader's perceptions, insisting that we look again at what we think we already know." - Carolyn Oulton, Canterbury Christ Church University, UK 


Contents

List of Figures
Acknowledgments
A Note on the Text
Abbreviations
Introduction
PART I: 'A DOOR OPEN, A DOOR SHUT'
On the Street
Danger en Route
Behind Closed Doors: Bogey-Husbands in Disguise: Mona Caird's The Wing of Azrael (1889)
PART II: FIGHTING FOR EMANCIPATION
Elizabeth Robins' The Convert
The Last Heroine Left?
PART III: THE PRE-WAR FEMALE GAZE
'Where Are You Going To, My Pretty Maid?': Elizabeth Robins on White Slavery
Read My Lips
Bibliography
Index


Authors

EMELYNE GODFREY graduated with a Ph.D. in English from Birkbeck College, University of London, UK. A freelance writer and researcher, she writes academic articles, dictionary and encyclopaedia entries and poetry, and gives lectures to societies. She is a regular contributor to History Today and is the Publicity Officer for the H.G. Wells Society.