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Look Inside Prostitution and Irish Society, 1800–1940

Prostitution and Irish Society, 1800–1940

$81.00 (P)

  • Date Published: January 2008
  • availability: Available
  • format: Hardback
  • isbn: 9780521882415

$ 81.00 (P)

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About the Authors
  • This is the first book to tackle the controversial history of prostitution in Ireland in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. Maria Luddy uncovers the extent of prostitution in the country, how Irish women came to work as prostitutes, their living conditions and their treatment by society. She links discussions of prostitution to the Irish nationalist and suffrage movements of the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, analysing the ways in which Irish nationalism used the problems of prostitution and venereal disease to argue for the withdrawal of the British from Ireland. She also investigates the contentious history of Magdalen asylums and explores how the infamous red-light district of Dublin's 'Monto' was finally suppressed through the actions of the Legion of Mary in the 1920s. Revealing complex social and religious attitudes towards prostitution in Irish society, this book opens up a new world in Ireland's social and political history.

    • The first book to tackle the history of prostitution in Ireland in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries
    • Sheds new light on the contentious history of the Magdalen asylums for fallen women
    • By a leading historian of Irish women
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    Reviews & endorsements

    "This is a fine pioneering study of a topic that is difficult to deal with historically because of the tilt of the evidence...To Luddy's immense credit, she builds her analysis carefully, while at the same time pointing out with clarity just how limited and how bent the evidence necessarily is. This is mature, confident scholarship." --Canadian Journal of History

    "This well-researched book, which includes useful statistical tables and illustrations, contributes to the study of women's history and modern Irish social history. Highly recommended." -Choice

    "This is an extremely impressive work that illuminates our understandings of prostitution as well as the place it occupied in Irish society from the early nineteenth century to the first decades of the Irish Free State." -Lesley A. Hall, Journal of Modern History

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    Product details

    • Date Published: January 2008
    • format: Hardback
    • isbn: 9780521882415
    • length: 368 pages
    • dimensions: 229 x 152 x 21 mm
    • weight: 0.66kg
    • contains: 13 b/w illus. 2 maps 12 tables
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    1. 'Frowsy, Shameless Women': an overview of prostitution in Ireland in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries
    2. 'Looking for my Living': women, community and prostitution in Ireland
    3. 'Behaved very ill': rescue work and Magdalen asylums in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries
    4. 'The Black Plague': venereal disease in nineteenth century Ireland
    5. 'Soldiers' Totty': nationalists, suffragists and the surveillance of women, 1900-1922
    6. 'Hopeless cases': prostitution and sexual danger in the Irish Free State, 1922-1940

  • Author

    Maria Luddy, University of Warwick
    Maria Luddy is Professor of Modern Irish History in the Department of History, University of Warwick. Her previous publications include Women and Philanthropy in Nineteenth-Century Ireland (1995) and, as editor, The Crimean Journals of the Sisters of Mercy, 1854-56 (2004).

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