How does one define widowhood? In spite of its widespread acceptance, the classic definition of widowhood as the phase of marriage following the death of one of the partners is never entirely satisfactory.
The figure of the devadasi, or ‘temple-woman’, who entertained Hindu gods at festivals, hardly needs an introduction. Because of her supposed sexual availability, the devadasi became a potent and notorious symbol of the corruption of Hindu society.
This is a relatively short book by Britain's leading historian of sexuality, but it has a big agenda. Drawing on a wide range of primary and secondary sources, Lesley Hall discusses the shifts, the continuities and the changes in sexual custom and practice that prevailed between 1880 and the present day.
This book is an excellent contribution to our historical understanding of London, of gender and of labour markets.
This title will doubtless be welcomed by those who offer undergraduate classes on the history of the family.
The small states and independent cities of the old German Reich have left many archival treasure-troves behind; traditionally these had been studied in a curiously restrictive fashion, with the emphasis on institutional and legal history.
The New Woman in Fiction and Fact marks a new departure in literary and historical studies of a fin-de-siècle icon. Scholarship on the New Woman has traditionally explored her status as a controversial figure whose unconventional behaviour signified, for some, the promise and for others, the bane of modern civilisation.
Dan Healey's study of same-sex love in revolutionary Russia is an impressively argued, well documented examination of one of the most 'obscure' 'blank spots' in Russian history. A radical revision of the 'myth of a universal, natural, and timeless Russian or Soviet heterosexuality' (p.
The articulation of a national network of elementary schools in England and Wales after 1870 and legislation to compel attendance at these schools from 1880 created marvellous opportunities for publishers. School authorities were major purchasers and the children in their schools a captive audience.
Pornography used to be regarded as ephemeral, trivial and unimportant. Insofar as it had a history, it was as one aspect of the long battle for, and ultimate triumph of, free speech. Histories of literary censorship and legal obscenity by writers like H.