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Monday, 2 May 2011

Catching up on journal literature I

Trying to dig up and read articles relevant to the revision of Sex, Gender, and Social Change. So far:

Jenny Birchall, ''The Carnival Revels of Manchester's Vagabonds': Young Working-class Women and Monkey Parades in the 1870s', Women's History Review, 2006,  15: 2, 229-252.
Useful piece on the anxieties of new urban spaces and the use of urban spaces, class mixing and mingling, women in public etc. It focuses on one street in Manchester, which with its new shopping emporia was creating concerns over middle-class shopping or simply window-shopping women, as well as the evening-time presence of young people of a lower class engaged in courtship behaviour, or encounters intended to lead to courtship. It sounds as if the young working-class women were as much about seeking a place to display their stylish finery as to cop off with young men. It also strikes me that as a community practice the the 'monkey-walk' did facilitate getting to know members of the opposite sex in a collective setting, which must have had an element of safety about it. And that just because the young women gave as good as they got verbally didn't mean that, even by middle-class standards, they were actually immoral in their behaviour.

Stephen Garton, 'The scales of suffering: Love, death and Victorian masculinity', Social History, 2002, 27: 1, 40-58. I
Interesting, but very close-focus study of the diaries of a late C19th Australian doctor and general activist in various fields, with particular reference to his mourning of his wife in them over a prolonged period. A useful contribution to our understanding of the fractures within Victorian middle-class masculinity but a bit narrow - is there any comparative work (he does cite Tosh on Victorian manhood).  It predates Julie-Marie Strange's work Death, Grief and Poverty in Britain, 1870-1914 (and now out in paperback!)

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