- A collection of facsimile reprints of early books and pamphlets on women’s physical education and related subjects of health and sports published in the nineteenth- to early twentieth-century Britain.
- The collection totals eighteen items, including: exercise books; school textbooks; surveys and research on the health of female students, as well as handbooks of modern sports such as tennis, golf, hockey, cycling etc.
- Includes many illustrations and pictures.
- Arranged by category in five volumes.
- Including hard-to-obtain items, the collection offers a valuable source of information, not only on the history of female education, but also on gender studies, sexuality, and the body.
Extracts from the Preface by Setsuko Kagawa
--- In the past few decades historians have developed an interest in the human body, health and physical education, from the viewpoints of social class, gender and national efficiency. As to the history of women’s physical education and sport in nineteenth- to twentieth-century Britain, we already have pioneering works by feminist researchers like Sheila Fletcher, Kathleen McCrone, and Jeniffer Hargreaves. Quite recently Ina Zweiniger-Bargielowska explored the emergence of modern male and female bodies and physical culture, within the wide context of debates about racial fitness and active citizenship from 1880s until 1939. However, we have much difficulty in investigating the actual state of early physical exercise and organized physical education for women in this period because of the lack and disparity of historical documents. Research will be much helped by having scattered contemporary literature brought together in these newly reprinted volumes.