Unhomely Empire: A Forum, Part 1

By Ellen Smith (University of Leicester) In Unhomely Empire, Dr Onni Gust considers eighteenth and early-nineteenth-century conceptions of ‘home’ beyond the physical and material space of the house. Gust offers a complex understanding of the ideological and discursive work that home has performed as an emotional concept throughout history. They take the reader through the … Continue reading “Unhomely Empire: A Forum, Part 1”

Unhomely Empire: A Forum, Introduction

A year ago, BECC held a reading group and online discussion for our midlands colleague Onni Gust’s new book, Unhomely Empire: Whiteness and Belonging, c.1760-1830. Across two sessions of discussion, we explored the book’s analysis of how empire and whiteness made each other, its uses of intellectual and literary evidence across genres, and its relation … Continue reading “Unhomely Empire: A Forum, Introduction”

Magical Source: A Quaker Forgery?

This post was contributed by Naomi Pullen, at the University of Warwick. It is part of our Magical Source series, in which historians from Birmingham and Warwick discuss the sources that reshaped their thinking on a topic. The first entry, by Karen Harvey, was about Mary Toft’s Confessions. The second, by Charles Walton, was about … Continue reading “Magical Source: A Quaker Forgery?”

Magical Source: Lord Grantham’s Coach

This post was contributed by Ben Jackson, here at the University Birmingham. It is part of our Magical Source series, in which historians from Birmingham and Warwick discuss the sources that reshaped their thinking on a topic. The first entry, by Karen Harvey, was about Mary Toft’s Confessions. The second, by Charles Walton, was about … Continue reading “Magical Source: Lord Grantham’s Coach”

Magical Source: Paine’s Letter to Danton

This post was contributed by Charles Walton, from the University of Warwick. It is part of our Magical Source series, in which historians from Birmingham and Warwick discuss the sources that reshaped their thinking on a topic. The first entry, by Karen Harvey, was about Mary Toft’s Confessions. Charles Walton on Thomas Paine’s Letter to … Continue reading “Magical Source: Paine’s Letter to Danton”

Magical Source: Mary Toft’s Confessions

Back in May, BECC and our colleagues at Warwick’s Early Modern and Eighteenth-Century Centre held a workshop for graduate students under the title, “The Magical Source: Light-bulb Moments in Historical Research.” Four historians each presented a source that had reshaped their thinking, and explained how that process took place. This week, we’ll share the written … Continue reading “Magical Source: Mary Toft’s Confessions”

Giving Birth in Eighteenth-Century England: Cathy McClive’s Review

Reading Giving Birth in Eighteenth-Century England is a rich immersive, sensory, and visceral experience. Sarah Fox’s rigorously-researched exploration of the physicality, materiality, and communities involved in the processes and emotions surrounding late pregnancy, childbirth, and lying-in is a model of how to approach the history of embodiment and the work of birthing.

Giving Birth in Eighteenth-Century England: Amber Vella’s Review

In Giving Birth in Eighteenth-Century England, Sarah Fox shrewdly and eloquently argues that in the eighteenth century ‘birthing was a process – a series of linked and flexible stages – rather than an event’ (p.7). This statement directly challenges much of the historiography that has come before it: histories of birth and birthing have traditionally … Continue reading “Giving Birth in Eighteenth-Century England: Amber Vella’s Review”

Giving Birth in Eighteenth-Century England: Elizabeth Hurren’s Review

Giving Birth in Eighteenth-Century England is the first book in a generation to re-examine the birthing process of women in the long-eighteenth century. It fundamentally revises our historical appreciation of the complexities of how to give birth, all those involved, and the physical dimensions that women experienced from the final stages of pregnancy through to … Continue reading “Giving Birth in Eighteenth-Century England: Elizabeth Hurren’s Review”

Giving Birth as a Social Event: Interview with Sarah Fox

Sarah Fox has been part of the BECC community, as a postdoctoral research fellow on the Social Bodies project, since 2021. Her first book, Giving Birth in Eighteenth-Century England, came out this April with the University of London Press. We’ll be sharing a series of reviews over the rest of the week, to celebrate the … Continue reading “Giving Birth as a Social Event: Interview with Sarah Fox”