Blog

Women and museums 1850-1914: Modernity and the Gendering of Knowledge by Dr. Kate Hill

In this blog post, Dr. Kate Hill tells us about her new monograph which sheds light on women as museum workers, donors and visitors.

As a young woman in the closing decades of the nineteenth century, Beatrix Potter spent a lot of her time in museums and galleries. She was exasperated by ‘hordes of young ladies’ in the National Gallery and the South Kensington Museum, making what she thought were hideous copies of paintings, and paid frequent visits to what is now the Natural History Museum, possibly for some respite. Here, she found it ‘peaceful amid the fossils’, but was …

Margaret Bondfield (Re) Discovered by Dr. Paula Bartley

In our latest post, Dr. Paula Bartley reflects on some of the archival challenges of studying women’s history in her latest excellent book, Labour Women In Power: Cabinet Ministers in the Twentieth Century.

One of the many challenges facing  historians of women is lack of source material. So much of the evidence of women’s lives, including those of famous women, has simply disappeared. In 1929, ninety years ago, Margaret Bondfield became the first ever female Cabinet Minister. Yet, little has been written about this ground-breaking individual. One reason is that her archive simply vanished. Ross Davies, a “Times” journalist …

Women and Materiality in Medieval and Early Modern Scotland: Symposium Report

Our latest blog post by Dr. Rachel Delman (York) is a report on the symposium Women and Materiality in Medieval and Early Modern Scotland that was held at the University of Edinburgh in April.

On Friday 26th April 2019, academics, heritage professionals and authors gathered at the University of Edinburgh’s Institute for Advanced Studies in the Humanities (IASH) for a one-day symposium on ‘Women and Materiality in Medieval and Early Modern Scotland’. The event was an outcome of my 8 months as Susan Manning Fellow at IASH, during which time I explored the architectural patronage of Queen Mary of …

WOMEN IN SPORT : A Timely Fracture in a Sporting Glass Ceiling by Doloranda Pember

In our latest post Doloranda Pember reflects on her book: In the wake of Mercedes Gleitze: Open Water Swimming Pioneer (The History Press, February 2019).

When my mother died in 1981, little did I know of the full extent of her pioneering swimming achievements during her youth in a male dominated world of sport. Mercedes Gleitze was a pioneer open water swimmer in the 1920s and 1930s, and although she rarely spoke to me or my siblings about her sporting feats, thankfully she left a comprehensive collection of press reports, witness statements, photographs and personal letters in suitcases in our …

Victorian Penal Institutions for Juvenile Females and Mary Carpenter, by Tahaney Alghrani

In our latest post Tahaney Alghrani reflects on crime, gender and ‘reform’ in Victorian port cities.

In recent months, youth knife crime has been much debated in the British press. These debates, however, are not new.  Just as today there are conflicting views on how we should address youth crime, this was also a central debate in the nineteenth century. Reformatory and Industrial schools, the first penal institutions for juvenile offenders, were established in 1855 to remove youths from their criminal associations and ‘at risk’ environments in order to reform them and train them within industry. Recent research by Barry …