First published in 1977, this book is a companion volume to Suffer and Be Still. It looks at the widening sphere of women’s activities in the Victorian age and testifies to the dual nature of the legal and social constraints of the period: on the one hand, the ideal of the perfect lady and the restrictive laws governing marriage and property posed limits to women’s independence; on the other hand, some Victorian women chose to live lives of great variety and complexity. By uncovering new data and reinterpreting old, the contributors in this volume debunk some of the myths surrounding the Victorian woman and alter stereotypes on which many of today’s social customs are based.
Table of Contents
Introduction: New Trends in the Study of the Victorian Women Martha Vicinus 1. Victorian Wives and Property: Reform of the Married Women’s Property Law, 1857-1882 Lee Holcombe 2. The Forgotten woman of the Period: Penny Weekly Family Magazines of the 1840s and 1850s Sally Mitchell 3. Feminism and Female Emigration, 1861-1886 A. James Hammerton 4. The Making of an Outcast Group: Prostitutes and Working Women in Nineteenth-Century Plymouth and Southampton Judith Walkowitz 5. Image and Reality: The Actress and Society Christopher Kent 6. Women and Degrees at Cambridge University, 1862-1897 Rita McWilliams-Tullberg 7. Victorian Masculinity and the Angel in the House Carol Christ 8. Sex and Death in Victorian England: An Examination of Age- and Sex-Specific Death Rates, 1840-1910 Sheila Ryan Johansson 9. Sexuality in Britain, 1800-1900: Some Suggested Revisions F. Barry Smith 10. The Women of England in a Centry of Social Change, 1815-1914: A Selected Bibliography, Part II Barbara Kanner; Notes; Index