The resort to law was an integral and regular part of everyday life in medieval Britain – and not just for men. Town court records offer glimpses into the lives of hundreds of ordinary women, through the lawsuits they were involved in.
Brutality, corruption and abuses of power in the Metropolitan Police at the turn of the 20th century led to an inquiry – but no reform.
Turning chaotic havens of ‘sloth and debauchery’ into systemised institutions of ‘pain and terror’, Victorian ‘model’ prisons were anything but.
Microhistories, examining a range of notorious and mundane crimes, can help recover marginalised figures and forge links to wider cultural histories.
When the European powers began exporting convicts to other continents, they did so to create a deterrent and to establish new settlements across the world. Clare Anderson traces the history of punitive passages.
William Kemmler was killed on August 6th, 1890.
A notorious mass murderer was sentenced to death on July 1st 1915.
How do you avoid glorifying the acts of criminals?
This is an extract from Anna Field’s ‘Masculinity and Myth’, which won the 2014 History Today undergraduate dissertation prize, awarded in conjunction with the Royal Historical Society.
Eynon Smart traces the career of ‘that famous Cheat’, Mary Carleton, known to the Restoration world as ‘the German Princess’.