Stephanie Graham Piña is an independent scholar whose research focuses on Victorian Art, especially the Pre-Raphaelites. In 2004 she created LizzieSiddal.com, a resource for those interested in the life of Pre-Raphaelite model and painter Elizabeth Siddal. She established her website 'The Pre-Raphaelite Sisterhood' in 2007 to highlight the work of women artists associated with the Pre-Raphaelite Circle. Through her popular online publications, she has been a leading advocate of independent research and discourse on Victorian art. You can follow her at @beguilingmerlin.
Here, Stephanie discusses how Fanny Cornforth, one of the most influencial models and muses to the Pre-Raphaelite artists, has been remembered by historians and critics. Unlike other Pre-Raphaelite models, such as Lizzie Siddal or Jane Morris, Fanny was a sex worker and from an impoverished background. She is described as having a thick Cockney accent, a dirty sense of humor, and dubious morals. Whilst it is perhaps understandable that Victorian moralists would dismiss Fanny's artistic influence, Stephanie suggests this prejudice continues today.
You can help fund a tribute to Fanny. We hope to commission a memorial to be installed with a commemoration ceremony in Chichester Cemetery on April 9, 2017. Any additional funds raised will be used to commission a memorial to her at Graylingwell Chapel. Please visit the GoFundMe account for this project and share it as much as you can. Spread the word on social media using the hashtag #RememberFanny.
GoFundMe: Fanny Cornforth Remembered created by Sarah Rance-Riley
Dr Andrew Bretz teaches Renaissance and Early Modern drama and poetry at Wilfrid Laurier University in Ontario, Canada and is the Acting Project Coordinator for the Canadian Shakespeare Association. He received his PhD from the University of Guelph in 2012, where his dissertation work was on the representation of the rapist on the early modern stage. He has published or presented on Elizabethan brothels, sexual identity in the early modern period, sexual violence and pedagogy, early modern prison writing, masculinity in film, Shakespeare on the radio, and digital approaches to teaching medieval and early modern literature. You can follow Andrew on twitter @Andrew__Bretz and take a look at his YouTube channel or his blog on teaching the early modern period, The Scholemaster.
Catharine Arnold read English at Cambridge and holds a further degree in psychology. Catharine's first novel, Lost Time, a gay love story set in Cambridge, won a Betty Trask award. Catharine's narrative non-fiction series on the dark side of London includes Necropolis, London and its Dead, Bedlam, and City of Sin, London and its Vices. Edward VII, The Prince of Wales and the Women He Loved, will be published in 2017 by St Martin's Press. Catharine has recently completed a crime novel.
We are thrilled to have an article by Catharine on the legendary courtesan, Lillie Langtry. You can follow her at @ London_darkside
Catherine Curzon is a royal historian who writes on all matters 18th century at www.madamegilflurt.com. Her work has been featured on HistoryExtra.com, the official website of BBC History Magazine and in publications such as Explore History, All
About History, History of Royals and Jane Austen’s Regency World. She has provided additional research for An Evening with Jane Austen at the V&A and spoken at venues
including the Royal Pavilion in Brighton, Lichfield Guildhall and Dr Johnson’s House.
Catherine holds a Master’s degree in Film and when not dodging the furies of the guillotine, writes fiction set deep in the underbelly of Georgian London. Her books, Life in the Georgian Court, and The Crown Spire, are available at the links below and at retailers worldwide.
She lives in Yorkshire atop a ludicrously steep hill.
Life in the Georgian Court
Amazon UK - Amazon US
The Crown Spire
Amazon UK - Amazon US
Rictor Norton Ph.D. is a Social and literary historian and writer, specializing in gay history. Member of the Gay Liberation Front, Florida, 1971-72, campaigned against Florida's sodomy statute. Edited The Homosexual Imagination, a special issue of College English, the first all-gay issue of an academic journal, 1974; introduction "The Homophobic Imagination" reproduced on Norton's website. He was the research Editor for the fortnightly news journal Gay News, London, 1974-78. Rictor has written articles on gay history and literature for Gay Sunshine, The Advocate, Gay News, etc. during the 1970s, and for Gay Times later. He has published academic articles in Renascence, American Imago, Yearbook of Comparative and General Literature, the London Journal, etc. Rictor was the Foreign Rights Manager for Western Publishing Company (Golden Books), 1979-90; a freelance publishing consultant 1991-94; freelance writer and editor since 1995. He has authored many books on gay history and on the Gothic Novel, including the highly acclaimed Mother Clap's Molly House: The Gay Subculture in England, 1700-1830 (1992), My Dear Boy: Gay Love Letters through the Centuries (ed.) (1997), The Myth of the Modern Homosexual (1997), a critique of social constructionism; a biography of the Gothic novelist Ann Radcliffe (1999); an anthology of Gothic Literature (2000); and several facsimile collections of eighteenth-century British erotica for Pickering and Chatto, Sex Doctors and Sex Crimes (2002) and Sodomites, Mollies, Sapphists and Tommies (2004). He is a contributor of entries to Who's Who in Gay & Lesbian History (Routledge, 2001) and a contributor to the Oxford Dictionary of National Biography. He maintains an extensive website on Gay History and Literature, with large subsections on Homosexuality in Eighteenth-Century England: A Sourcebook and on the "father of gay history" John Addington Symonds, as well as a non-gay site on Early Eighteenth-Century Newspaper Reports: A Sourcebook. In December 2005 he formed a civil partnership with his partner of nearly thirty years.
Sara Sheridan writes historical novels and also runs REEK. perfume. Her first fragrance, Damn Rebel Bitches, is a tribute in scent to the Jacobite women and has been called ‘the first feminist fragrance.’ We have been lucky enough to have her share her research and insights into the history of being topless.
Princess Honey Bee is a kink blogger, and blogs about Bondage, Discipline, Sadism and Masochism at https://princessbhive.com/about/ . She has been in the BDSM lifestyle for over 15 years, and is a former professor of sociology.
Dr. Kate Lister is a researcher at Leeds Trinity University in historical attitudes to sexuality and sex work. She has published on the history of media narratives around sex work, the history of menstruation and sexual violence in historical dramas. She is the curator of the popular Twitter account @WhoresofYore where she tweets the history of illicit sex and works to promote sex worker rights and challenge stigma.
"Overeducated and unrepentant whore who talks far too much and writes the popular blog The Honest Courtesan in addition to the usual harlotry". Maggie McNeil is a sex worker, sex worker rights activist, author, and blogger. She blogs about her personal experiences (sans lurid detail), about the history of the profession, sometimes about unusual aspects of it most outsiders don’t know about. Her book Ladies of the Night is available to buy now.
Kate Lister is a researcher at Leeds Trinity University in historical attitudes to sexuality and sex work. She has published on the history of media narratives around sex work, the history of menstruation and sexual violence in historical dramas. She is the curator of the popular Twitter account @WhoresofYore (you may have heard of it).
Dr Lesley Hulonce is historian and lecturer of health humanities in the College of Human and Health Sciences at Swansea University. Her research interests include the histories of children, disability, poverty, gender and prostitution via state and voluntary action. Her new book Pauper Children and Poor Law Childhoods in England and Wales 1834-1910 is available here.
She is co-director of the Research Group for Health, History and Culture and founder of Academics for a Publishing Revolution.
She blogs at Workhouse Tales and Prostitution and Women's Work and tweets at @LesleyHulonce and @HistHealthCult.
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