Until recently, women featured in the historiography of the landed class in Ireland either as bearers of assets to advantageous matches or as potential drains on family estates. Drawing on a range of sources from the papers of landed families, this book provides fresh insights into the place of these women. Looking at women’s experiences of property and power in twenty landed families between 1750 and 1850, and outlining the statutory developments that impacted upon the distribution of family property in Ireland, Wilson considers how women were provided for and examines the legal, social and familial factors that influenced the experience elite women had of property. Individual examples demonstrate the similarities and differences between women in this class, and illustrate how the experience women had of property in this period was more complex than their legal and social status might suggest. This book will appeal to scholars in the fields of Irish history, gender and women’s studies.
This is the first scholarly edition of the Memoirs of Laetitia Van Lewen Pilkington (1709?-1750), a poet, ghostwriter, and protégée of Jonathan Swift and the playwright/stage manager Colley Cibber. Swift's first biographer by virtue of her lively portrayals of him, Pilkington remains the best chronicler of the great satirist's private life while he was at the height of his influence and creativity. Offering as well an account of Pilkington's own tumultuous and unconventional life, the Memoirs caused a scandal when they first appeared, owing to their details about her divorce and the many would-be Lotharios (most of them married) who subsequently pestered her with their attentions. Originally appearing in three volumes between 1748 and 1754, the Memoirs have been periodically reprinted and are often quoted by scholars in different disciplines. Until now, however, the work has not received serious editorial attention. In this edition, A. C. Elias Jr. has established for the first time a critical text based on the earliest and most definitive printings, which Pilkington and her son oversaw. For the first time there are explanatory notes that identify the many veiled or anonymous figures in the text and establish the reliability of each anecdote about them. Other new features include an index, a census of early editions, a full bibliography, and a chronology. This edition is produced in a two-volume format, the first comprising the actual Memoirs, and the second the commentary. Readers are at last in a position to understand exactly what Pilkington is saying in her Memoirs--and what she may be suppressing in the process. They can now approach Pilkington's Swift with confidence at each step, and appreciate her rendering of the many other real-life personages who populate her disarmingly breezy narrative: bishops, scientists, and statesmen; authors, artists, and printers; and assorted rogues, wits, bawds, and eccentrics. More than any other early-eighteenth-century woman writing in English, says Elias, Pilkington remains accessible to readers today. As a portrayal of Swift, as the recollections of a woman making her way in the male-dominated world of letters, as a source of Irish and English cultural and historical minutiae, and as a delightfully gossipy poke at social pretense, Pilkington's Memoirs are a classic of her era.
Charles James Napier, The Conquest of Sind, and Imperial Liberalism
Author: Edward Beasley
Publisher: Taylor & Francis
General Charles James Napier was sent to confront the tens of thousands of Chartist protestors marching through the cities of the North of England in the late 1830s. A well-known leftist who agreed with the Chartist demands for democracy, Napier managed to keep the peace. In South Asia, the same man would later provoke a war and conquer Sind. In this first-ever scholarly biography of Napier, Edward Beasley asks how the conventional depictions of the man as a peacemaker in England and a warmonger in Asia can be reconciled. Employing deep archival research and close readings of Napier's published books (ignored by prior scholars), this well-written volume demonstrates that Napier was a liberal imperialist who believed that if freedom was right for the people of England it was right for the people of Sind -- even if "freedom" had to be imposed by military force. Napier also confronted the messy aftermath of Western conquest, carrying out nation-building with mixed success, trying to end the honour killing of women, and eventually discovering the limits of imperial interference.
Of the women who were caught up in the turbulent events of 1798, only a few left behind a written record of what they witnessed. Most of the known accounts, written as historical narratives, are gathered together for the first time in this book. Some are well known to rebellion scholars, while others are more obscure and have either never been published or have appeared in an extensively bowdlerized form. The editor has gone back to the original manuscripts in many cases and reproduced them faithful to their original wording. The book contains extensive annotations, with biographical sketches of the narrators as well as references to a host of associated individuals that will interest not only students of the rebellion, but also local historians and genealogists. The Narratives offer a unique window on the lives of Irish women more than two centuries ago, and their words have a stirring poignancy that continues to make their accounts compelling reading.