Electrical Women

This post focuses on Margaret Fuller, the 19th century Transcendental and feminist philosopher and a key figure in my medical history research. Fuller was born Sarah Margaret Fuller on 23rd May 1810 in Massachusetts, America. She is credited as being the first woman to review and edit American journalism and her monumental text Woman in the Nineteenth Century is claimed to be the first feminist work in America. Fuller died in 1850 after drowning from a ship wreck near New York. Elements surrounding her death, namely the foreshadowing of her own demise and transcendental responses to her death are topics to discuss in the future.

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ITV Victoria: Dress Exhibition

 

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Sunday night period drama withdrawals. Gentleman Jack has finished and Sundays have become mundane, you know, like when you were at school and Monday morning loomed and Sundays were the ultimate enemy. One of my favourite Sunday night dramas was ITV’s Victoria which I now know is on a long break between series. It’s so sad.

However to fill my Queen Victoria drama void is a Yorkshire delight! During the drama’s first series Harewood House in Leeds, which was a major set for the programme, held an exhibition of one of my favourite things – dresses! A selection of dresses used on the show were display in the beautiful period rooms of the country estate.

I took these photos a very* long time ago and found them recently! I never got round to writing a post surrounding my visit to this exhibition at the time.

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The Wonder Women in History Comic

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July marks the return of Wimbledon and in this post I look at the later career of a great tennis player, Alice Marble (1913 – 1990). Marble was an American tennis player, the number one player between 1936 and 1940. Marble won the singles title of Wimbledon in 1939, 80 years ago this year. She had a remarkable career; in total she won 18 Grand Slams across singles, women’s doubles and mixed doubles competitions. Marble’s talents and versatility stretched to areas outside of sport; after retiring from tennis Marble worked as an associate editor on the Wonder Woman Comics (originally Sensation Comics) and is credited as creating the Wonder Women of History feature which ran alongside the Wonder Woman comic.

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Dangerous Fashion: Devilish Crinolines

 

“At all events if a crinoline must be the fashion then every lady should wear a fire screen.”

I find historical fashions fascinating. Fashion, textiles and popular crazes can be analysed to be more than aesthetics. I particularly enjoy the medical impact of fashion.  Fashion has power over the physical body, it manipulates and shapes the anatomy. The productions of fabrics often contained cocktails of dangerous chemicals, poisoning and scarring the body overtime. Fashion also contributed to sudden and accidental deaths – deaths you only associate with horror movies, nightmares and exaggerations.

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Free flying of the mind: The Lorina Bulwer scroll

“I MISS LORINA BULWER AM A TRUE LOYAL PERSON….I MISS LORINA BULWER AM FREE.”

In this post I discuss the interesting, yet emotional, life and story of Lorina Bulwer, an inmate at the Great Yarmouth Workhouse. On arrival to the workhouse, Lorina was confined to the lunatic ward. She expressed her thoughts and feelings by stitching long monologues of capitalised words which are often considered as rambles, rants and in some cases, powerful nonsense. There are currently three known surviving “Lorina” samplers in Britain. I refer to Lorina by her first name in this post as her embroidered texts depict  a clear personality and a particular level of familiarity and modern day relevance.

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Christmas at Castle Howard

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I adore historic houses; there is nothing I love more than having a spare couple of hours to delve into the histories of unique country manors, town houses or the small yet powerful dwellings of previous earthly occupants. I’ve visited a variety of houses around Yorkshire – a lot on numerous occasions – yet I was ashamed to have not visited Castle Howard in my adult memory. I had a spare weekend and decided to take the rural and scenic route to the Howardian Hills to visit Castle Howard at Christmas. The overall theme of the house and grounds is The Twelve Days of Christmas, with each room of the spacious, yet intimate, building representing each day of festivities.

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