New ejournals: Early Modern Women & International Public History

We kick off with 2019 by announcing that Oxford researchers now have access to the following two ejournals in SOLO. Enjoy!

Early Modern Women [ISSN 1933-0065] v1(1), 2006-. Published by the Arizona Center for Medieval and Renaissance Studies, this journal is “devoted solely to the interdisciplinary and global study of women and gender during the years 1400 to 1700. Each volume gathers essays on early modern women from every country and region, by scholars from a wide range of academic disciplines, including art history, cultural studies, music, history, political science, religion, theatre, history of science, and history of philosophy.”

International Public History [ISSN 2567-1111] v1(1), 2018-. “The IPH is the official organ of the International Federation for Public History. Published twice a year, the journal provides a mix of theoretical, research and “practice-oriented” scholarly articles on a wide range of topics. The multimodal journal offers readers a rich experience through the enhancement of articles using photos, film and audio clips.”

This journals is relevant to those interested in History and memory; digital public history; archiving; libraries; exhibiting; curation; preservation; heritage; communication and media; policy; private and commercial sectors.

Also of interest:

Women history resources at Oxford University (Part 2): a selection of digital resources in the Oxford Libraries

Following on from the first History Day 2018 blog post on Oxford’s archival resources for women’s history, I now turn my attention to interesting full-text online source databases which are available to all registered Bodleian readers. The resources span early modern to modern periods and cover a range of materials, such as diaries, letters, papers and publications by women or for women. Many have a surprisingly global reach though English-language sources still dominate.

Conducting full-text searches in these resources is very difficult. However, many databases are structured in such way as to help find information about women’s daily lives, their thoughts and feelings, but also provide facts and reports on their contributions to e.g. the war efforts. As ever, the more you know about your topic, gleaned from secondary readings, the more success you are likely to have when searching these resources.

More information can also be found on our LibGuide to Women’s Studies.

British and Irish Women’s Letters and Diaries 1500-1950 (subscription resource)
Documents the personal and immediate experiences of approximately 500 women, as revealed in over 90,000 pages of diaries and letters.

Defining Gender, 1450-1910 (subscription resource)
A thematically organised collection of original primary source material from British archives, which ‘explores the study and analysis of gender, leisure and consumer culture’.

Association for Promoting the Education of Women, 1889-1899 correspondence. Defining Gender.

Early Modern Letters Online (EMLO) (free on web)

EMLO provides access to a combined finding aid and editorial interface for basic descriptions of early modern correspondence: a collaboratively populated union catalogue of sixteenth-, seventeenth-, and eighteenth-century letters.

Includes, for instance, the correspondence of Anne Conway (1631-1679)

21 Feb 1650: More, Henry (Dr), 1614-1687 (Christ’s College, University of Cambridge, Cambridge, Cambridgeshire, England) to Conway, Anne, 1631-1679. EMLO.

Gerritsen Collection–Women’s History Online, 1543-1945 (subscription resource)
A collection of ‘books, pamphlets and periodicals reflecting the revolution of a feminist consciousness and the movement for women’s rights’, with ‘more than 4,700 publications from continental Europe, the U.S., the United Kingdom, Canada, and New Zealand, dating from 1543-1945. This resource has a more global reach than it might appear.

Granet, La polygynie sororale… (1920), Gerritsen Collection

North American Women’s Letters and Diaries (subscription resource)
Collection of some 150,000 pages of published letters and diaries from individuals writing from colonial times to 1950. Documents the personal experiences of over 1,300 women.

International Women’s Periodicals, 1786-1933: Social and Political Issues (Archives Unbound) (subscription resource)
Online access to 57 women’s magazine and journal publications covering the late eighteenth century to the 1930s. The material allows researchers to explore the role of women in society and the development of the public lives of women as the push for women’s rights (woman suffrage, fair pay, better working conditions, etc.) grew in the United States and England. Some of the titles in this collection were conceived and published by men for women; others, conceived and published by male editors with strong input from female assistant editors or managers; others were conceived and published by women for women. It is therefore also useful for the study of the history of women’s publishing. The strongest suffrage and anti-suffrage writing was done by women for women’s periodicals. Suffrage and anti-suffrage writing, domesticity columns, and literary genres from poetry to serialized novels are included in these periodicals

Gallery of Fashion, Nov 1794. International Women’s Periodicals 1786-1933.

London Low Life (subscription resource)
This collection brings to life the teeming streets of Victorian London, inviting students and scholars to explore the gin palaces, brothels and East End slums of London in the 19th century. From salacious ‘swell’s guides’ to scandalous broadsides and subversive posters, the material sold and exchanged on London’s bustling thoroughfares offers an unparalleled insight into the dark underworld of the city. Children’s chapbooks, street cries, slang dictionaries and ballads were all part of a vibrant culture of street literature.This is also an incredible visual resource for students and scholars of London, with many full colour maps, cartoons, sketches and a full set of the essential Tallis’ Street Views of London – resource for the study of London architecture and commerce. Also includes George Gissing’s famous London scrapbooks from the Pforzheimer Collection, containing his research for London novels such as New Grub Street and The Netherworld.

Women’s Refuges 1871-1880 in London. Thematic Data Map. London Low Life.

Mass Observation Online (subscription resource)
This is a collection of much of the material from the Mass Observation Archive which also records the voices of women. It includes the entire File Report sequence 1937-1972, access to all of the Day Surveys, Directives and Diaries, 1937-1967, Mass Observation Publications 1937-1965 and 87 Topic Collection (e.g. e.g. Smoking Habits 1937-1965, etc.). The Worktown Collection includes material of a major study of the towns of Bolton (Worktown) and Blackpool (Holidaytown).

Diarist 5387, 11 July 1940 [on sexual harassment]. Mass Observation

Useful for the study of social history, sociology, etc., of modern Britain, it covers topics such as abortion, old age, crime, eating habits, shopping, fashion, dance, popular music, coal mining, adult education, sex, reading, ethnic minorities, and the decline of Empire. It is a resource that will be useful to historians, literary scholars, sociologists, anthropologists and political scientists.

Past Masters: Full-Text Humanities (subscription resource)
A collection of primary-source full-text humanities databases, including:

  • Les Œuvres de Simone de Beauvoir
  • The Letters of Jane Austen
  • Bluestocking Feminism 1738-1785.
  • The Letters of Charlotte Brontë
  • The Journals and Letters of Fanny Burney
  • The Notebooks and Library of George Eliot
  • The Journals of Mary Shelley, 1814-1844

Perdita Manuscripts: Women Writers 1500-1700 (subscription resource) Access to 230 digitised manuscripts from the Perdita Project, written or compiled by women in the British Isles during the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries.

Women, War and Society, 1914–1918 (Archives Unbound) (subscription resource)
A digital collection of First World War charity and international relief reports, pamphlets, photographs, press cuttings and more. It fully documents the essential contribution of women during the Great War as well as the revolutionary and permanent impact the World War I had on the personal, social and professional lives of these women. It is an important collection for research into 20th century social, political, military and gender history.

Report On The Increased Employment Of Women During The War With Statistics Relating To July 1917. The Women at Work Collection, Imperial War Museum, London, in Women, War and Society, 1914–1918.

Women Writers Online (subscription resource)
A full-text collection of texts by pre-Victorian women writers, published by the Women Writers Project at Northeastern University.

I close with reference to the underrated Waterloo Directory of English Newspapers and Periodicals 1800-1900 (subscription resource). For instance, it helps you locate details of Victorian periodicals on e.g. women’s interest as well as give details of editors, circulation figures, etc.

Waterloo Directory for English Newspapers and Periodicals 1800-1900 – Women Fashion search

There is even more!

It goes without saying that other online source databases will of course have material relevant for women’s history, even though they are not dedicated to them. Browse our Databases A-Z to discover more.

Useful links:

Women history resources at Oxford University (Part 1): a selection of archival resource in Oxford Libraries

In a large library system such as the Bodleian Libraries and Oxford college libraries, holding over 13 million books and vast archives between them, archival resources on women can be difficult to spot. Therefore, in honour of History Day 2018, organised by the Institute of Historical Research Library and Senate House Library, and whose theme this year is women’s history, this blog post aims to highlight the archives of a selection of remarkable women who were in some way connected to Oxford or whose papers were deposited in Oxford. Their lives span the political, literary, social and scientific spheres of late 18th, 19th and 20th century Britain. Each one of them has a story to tell, in their own way, through their diaries and letters, and each is outstanding and interesting for their various contributions to British life, culture and science. Collectively, the archives document women’s lives and their struggles for recognition and rights, but also celebrate their achievements both before and after the suffragette movement.

The history of women in Oxford’s male-dominated university is briefly described at History of Women at Oxford. It was thanks to individual initiatives, and the pioneering work of the Association for Promoting the Higher Education of Women (AEW), that women’s colleges came to be established in Oxford. Lady Margaret Hall and Somerville opened in 1879, followed by St Hugh’s in 1886 and St Hilda’s in 1893. Women only become full members of the University in 1920.

Exhibition: Sappho to Suffrage: women who dared

6 March 2018 — 22 February 2019
Venue: Treasury, Weston Library (Map)

Pirates and poets; suffragettes and explorers – this exhibition celebrates the achievements of women who dared to do the unexpected. Sappho to Suffrageshowcases some of the Bodleian’s most remarkable and treasured items. Highlights on show from the Bodleian Libraries collections of over 13 million items include:

  • 2nd century BCE fragments of Sappho’s poetry written on papyrus;
  • Ada Lovelace’s 19th century notes on mathematics;
  • the manuscript of Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein;
  • a manuscript of Jane Austen’s juvenilia, Volume the First;
  • photographs by the Victorian photography pioneer Julia Margaret Cameron; and
  • a musical score by Fanny Mendelssohn.
  • the only known surviving version of the board game Suffragetto:

Highlights of the exhibition also include a ‘lost banner‘, a specially commissioned recreation of a banner originally used by the Oxford Women’s Suffrage Society in 1908, and a display featuring the perspectives of contemporary women one hundred years since the vote was won.

POLITICS

Papers of Emma Alice Margaret (Margot) Asquith, Countess of Oxford (1864-1945)

‘Margot’ Asquith, Countess of Oxford and Asquith by Elliott & Fry. NPG x90783

Political hostess and diarist. Married H.H. Asquith, the Home Secretary, in 1894. In 1905 Asquith became Chancellor of the Exchequer and in 1908 Prime Minister. Her leading position, as Asquith’s wife, in London Society is reflected in her correspondence.

The collection includes diaries, 1876-1923; general correspondence, 1876-1945, followed by family correspondence, 1884-1945; literary papers, 1879-1945; personal papers.

> Oxford Dictionary of National Biography article (subscribers only)

Papers of Barbara Castle, Baroness Castle of Blackburn, 1868-2002

Barbara Anne Castle, Baroness Castle by Walter Bird 17 June 1964 NPG x1664273

Labour cabinet minister and campaigner.

The papers comprise diaries 1953-2001, family correspondence 1903-2000; political papers (encompassing papers relating to the Labour Party, backbench MP subject files, ministerial papers, MEP papers, and House of Lords subject files); speeches and lectures, 1937-2001; financial and legal papers, 1919-2002; personal papers, 1926-2002; Secretaries’ papers, 1983-2002; Drawings and paintings, 1967-[1995]; and Photographs, 1905-98.

> Oxford Dictionary of National Biography article (subscribers only)

 

Violet Milner Papers (1872-1958) 

Imperial activist. Married Lord Edward Herbert Gascoyne-Cecil (1867-1918) in 1894. She subsequently married Viscount Milner (1854-1925) in 1921. She had an interest in politics and was editor of The National Review1932-48.

The collection consists mainly of the papers of Violet Milner. It contains material relating to 19th- and 20th-century British and Imperial history, in particular the Boer War. The coverage of 20th-century South African politics is notable. Most major British politicians and political events of this period are documented in some way.

> Oxford Dictionary of National Biography article (subscribers only)

Margery Fry (1874-1958) (held at Somerville College, Oxford)

Penal reformer and Principal of Somerville College 1927-30. Archive comprises correspondence and papers.

> Oxford Dictionary of National Biography article (subscribers only)

Correspondence and papers of Lady Violet Bonham Carter (1887-1969)

(Helen) Violet Bonham Carter, Baroness Asquith of Yarnbury by Howard Coster. 1933.  NPG x3017

Liberal political figure and daughter of H.H. Asquith and his first wife Helen.

Held the position of President of the Women’s Liberal Federation twice, from 1923-5 and again 1939-45. In 1945 she was invited to become President of the Liberal Party Organization, the first woman to do so, holding office until 1947. In 1963 she became the first woman to give the Romanes lecture at the University of Oxford, speaking on ‘The Impact of Personality on Politics’.

She also wrote articles for magazines, mainly for women, and letters to newspapers on national and international causes. Awarded a life peerage in 1964 and attended House of Lords until her death in 1969.

> Oxford Dictionary of National Biography article (subscribers only)

Papers of Evelyn Emmet, Baroness Emmet of Amberley (1901-75)

Evelyn Emmet, Baroness Emmet of Amberley by Walter Bird, November 1958. NPG x167398

Politician and Conservative MP.

Educated at Lady Margaret Hall, Oxford (1917-20) where she read literae humaniores. Her political career began in local government but played a national role serving on the Home Office probation advisory committee and of the Home Office special commission on cinema and the child in 1950. In 1952 and 1953 she was the UK delegate to the UN’s general assembly. Became an MP in 1955 and elevated to the Lords in 1964, serving there as deputy speaker and deputy chair of committees 1968-77.

The papers include diaries, correspondence, speeches, articles, broadcasts, and printed papers relating to her political career.

> Oxford Dictionary of National Biography article (subscribers only)

Papers of Vera Brittain  1893-1970

Vera Brittain by Howard Coster. 1936. NPG x24033

Writer, feminist, pacifist.

Best known as the author of the memoir Testament of Youth. She was accepted to read English at Somerville College, Oxford, in 1915; returned after World War I in 1919, changing her course to Modern History. Papers of Vera Brittain consist of:

  • Notebooks concerning her participation in the World Pacifist Conference and her lecture tour in India, 1949-50
  • Volume of photographs of Cape Comorin, India, n.d.

Papers of Vera Brittain held at Somerville College: the Somerville archive contains a collection of her letters, diaries, photos and books left to the College by her friend and one-time literary executor Paul Berry.

> Oxford Dictionary of National Biography article (subscribers only)

LITERATURE & CULTURE

Abinger Papers

The Abinger collection comprises the correspondence and papers of three generations of the Godwin & Shelley families. This includes the majority of the surviving correspondence and papers of the philosopher and author William Godwin and his first wife, the feminist author Mary Wollstonecraft, and second wife, the translator and bookshop owner Mary Jane Clairmont, as well as the correspondence of Everina Wollstonecraft and Eliza Bishop, Mary Wollstonecraft’s sisters.

Mary Wollstonecraft (1759-1797)

Mary Wollstonecraft by John Opie. oil on canvas, circa 1797. NPG 1237

Writer, advocator of women’s rights and philosopher.

Best known for A Vindication of the Rights of Women (1792), a best seller of its day, but also wrote novels and a book on the history of the French Revolution.

Archive includes correspondence & papers from 1785 to 1797.

> Oxford Dictionary of National Biography article (subscribers only)

 

Mary Shelley (1797-1851)

Mary Shelley by Richard Rothwell. oil on canvas, exhibited 1840. NPG 1235

Writer and daughter of Mary Wollstonecraft. Best known for her Gothic novel Frankenstein, or, The Modern Prometheus(1818).

Archive includes correspondence and papers, manuscripts of novels, short stories, poems, non-fiction works, personal papers (drawing, inventories, financial papers).

A fair copy of Shelley’s 1817 script for Frankenstein (MS. Abinger c.58) is available in Digital.Bodleian.

Oxford Dictionary of National Biography article (subscribers only)

 

Papers of Barbara Mary Crampton Pym (1913-80)

Novelist.

Read English at St Hilda’s College, Oxford. Papers include the manuscripts of published and unpublished novels and short stories, literary papers, notebooks, diaries and correspondence. Loose leaves removed from some of the bound volumes, including notes and drafts for novels, are in MS. Pym 99.

Oxford Dictionary of National Biography article (subscribers only)

Papers of Sibyl, Lady Colefax (1874-1950)

English interior decorator, hostess and socialite. The collection includes letters from many of the literary and society figures of her day, some personal and family papers, a few diaries of Lady Colefax, her visitors’ books, and a number of photograph albums.

> Oxford Dictionary of National Biography article (subscribers only)

Julia Margaret Cameron (1815–1879)

Victoria photographic pioneer. Cameron’s work was largely forgotten until the 1940s, but she has been widely recognised since then as one of the most important and innovative photographers of all time.

Her photographs can be found in a number of albums held at the Bodleian Library, amongst them an album, which she had compiled for Sir Henry Taylor. These photos are collectively known as The Henry Taylor Album.

> Oxford Dictionary of National Biography article (subscribers only)

Elizabeth Maconchy Archive (1907-94) (held at St Hilda’s College, Oxford)

Dame Elizabeth Maconchy by Howard Coster. 1938. NPG x23833

Irish composer.

The archive contains almost all the manuscripts of her compositions as well as some printed scores, programmes, press cuttings, and some correspondence.

> Oxford Dictionary of National Biography article (subscribers only)

SCIENCE

Mary Somerville (1780-1872) Collection, [c.1700]-1972 (in Bodleian Library, owned by Somerville College)

Mary Somerville by James Rannie Swinton. chalk, 1848. NPG 690

Science writer and mathematics expositor.

Received many honours during her lifetime, and after her death, Somerville College, Oxford, founded in 1879 as a women’s college, was named after her. A Somerville scholarship for women also commemorates her name.

Archive includes correspondence and papers, also relating to the Somerville family.

> Oxford Dictionary of National Biography article (subscribers only)

 

Correspondence of Ada Lovelace (1815-52) (part of Papers of the Noel, Byron and Lovelace families)

Ada Lovelace by William Henry Mote, after Alfred Edward Chalon. stipple engraving, published 1839. NPG D5124

English writer, mathematician and early computer pioneer.

Active in Victorian London’s social and scientific elite alongside Mary Somerville. The main part of this collection of papers belonged to Annabella, Lady Byron.

The collection also contains correspondence of Ada and her husband William, 1st Earl of Lovelace, used by Doris Langley Moore in her biography Ada, Countess of Lovelace (1978). See Bodleian Ada Lovelace blog.

> Oxford Dictionary of National Biography article (subscribers only)

Archive of Mabel FitzGerald (1872-1973)

Physiologist (esp. on respiration) and clinical pathologist.

Studied unofficially (women were not yet admitted to the university for that subject) and then researched physiology in Oxford. The archive comprises personal and scientific papers, spanning her lifetime, as well as family papers.

> Oxford Dictionary of National Biography article (subscribers only)

SUFFRAGE AT OXFORD

Archive of the Association for the Education of Women in Oxford, 1878-1922

Papers relating to the education of women at Oxford University. Women were not admitted to membership of the University until 1920, although they had been allowed to sit some University examinations and attend lectures for over forty years by that date. It was the work of the Association for Promoting the Higher Education of Women (AEW), founded 1878, that women’s colleges came to be established in Oxford.

The archive includes minute books, 1878-1920; papers relating to the finances of the Association, 1878-1922; papers relating to students, 1883-1920; and printed and miscellaneous papers, 1877-1920.

More from the Oxford Dictionary of National Biography (subscribers only):

National League for Opposing Woman Suffrage (act. 1910–1918) by Julia Bush
National Union of Women’s Suffrage Societies (act. 1896–1918) by Sandra Stanley Holton

USEFUL LINKS

New: International Women’s Periodicals, 1786-1933: Social and Political Issues (Archives Unbound)

Womanhood, vol VI June To November 1901, in International Women’s Periodicals 1786-1933 (Cengage)

I’m pleased to inform Oxford researchers and students that you now have access to the online International Women’s Periodicals, 1786-1933: Social and Political Issues (Archives Unbound).

This Cengage resource provides online access 57 women’s magazine and journal publications covering the late eighteenth century to the 1930s.

The material allows researchers to explore the role of women in society and the development of the public lives of women as the push for women’s rights (woman suffrage, fair pay, better working conditions, etc.) grew in the United States and England.

Some of the titles in this collection were conceived and published by men, for women; others, conceived and published by male editors with strong input from female assistant editors or managers; others were conceived and published by women, for women. It is therefore also useful for the study of the history of women’s publishing.

Gallery Of Fashion, May 1796, in International Women’s Periodicals 1785-1933 (Cengage)

The strongest suffrage and anti-suffrage writing was done by women for women’s periodicals. Suffrage and anti-suffrage writing, domesticity columns, and literary genres from poetry to serialized novels are included in these periodicals. Thus this resource provides a wide array of views for study.

The collection contains overwhelmingly English and US publications, with 4 German, 1 French periodical and 1 Icelandic periodical.

Access is via SOLO or Databases A-Z. Use your Oxford Single Single On for remote access.

While you are here, you might find these subscription eresources also useful:

Oxford Dictionary of National Biography: Aug 2018 update: Women and Parliament

The ODNB’s August 2018 update adds twenty-seven articles (including one reference group article), containing twenty-six biographies, accompanied by ten portrait likenesses. The particular focus is on women and Parliament in the period after 1918 when women’s suffrage was (partially) gained, and when women could stand for parliament for the first time. Their biographies have been curated by Dr Mari Takayanagi, senior archivist at the Parliamentary Archives. Read the full editorial introduction to this month’s update.

New and updated subjects include:

Attlee (née Millar), Violet Helen, countess Attlee (1895–1965), charity fund-raiser and prime minister’s wife
Carnegy, Elizabeth Patricia, Baroness Carnegy of Lour (1925–2010), Girl Guides official and educationist
Carney [married name McBride], (Maria) Winifred, [Winnie] (1887–1943), trade unionist, suffrage activist, and Irish republican*
Chamberlain, Annie Vere [Anne] (1882–1967), political wife

and many more.

To accompany the August update, a new reference group Women candidates at the 1918 General Election is now available.

ODNB’s Reference groups are selected biographies on a particular topic/ themes, professions, clubs, movements, etc. They are particularly useful if you don’t know the names of individuals.

The biography of the one female candidate (out of 17) to be elected, is available in the ODNB: Constance Markievicz was elected as the Sinn Fein candidate for Dublin St Patrick’s constituency. Although she was the first woman MP, she did not take her seat in Parliament in line with other Sinn Fein MPs. She was also a Polish countess by marriage.

Other ODNB reference groups also relevant to women’s history in this period are, for instance:

You might also like:

Source databases (subscription resources available to Oxford students and researchers):

Exhibition:

Sappho to Suffrage: women who dared – Weston Library, 6 March 2018 – 3 February 2019 > more

> Digitised exhibits (incl.

New books:

Grayzel, Susan R. ; Proctor, Tammy M.,

Gender and the Great War (Oxford, 2017)

 

Fara, Patricia,

A lab of one’s own : science and suffrage in the First World War

(Oxford, 2018)

Berthezène, C., & Gottlieb, J. (eds.),

Rethinking right-wing women : gender and the Conservative party, 1880s to the present

(Manchester, 2018)

To find more books, using the following subject searches in SOLO:

  • Women — Political activity — Great Britain — Biography
  • Women — Suffrage — Great Britain

Trials of 3 women’s history eresources – your views count

By Unknown – http://www.hastingspress.co.uk/history/sufpix.htm, Public Domain, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=15154048

Oxford researchers are now invited to trial three online resources on the study of women’s history, gender history, suffragette movement and social history in general.

The geographical coverage spans mostly Great Britain, but also former colonies, and, to some extent, the rest of the world.

All resources are relevant for the 19th and 20th centuries.

They can be accessed via SOLO or OxLIP+

Please send any feedback on the content, functionality and usefulness to your research to isabel.holowaty@bodleian.ox.ac.uk. When doing so, also tell me your priorities purchases and explain why. Your views matter!

Archives Direct: Women in the National Archives (until 1 Feb 2018)

Gives access to original documents on the Suffrage Question in Britain, the Empire and Colonial Territories as well as a Finding Aid to Women’s Studies Resources in The National Archives, Kew. The finding aid enables researchers to quickly locate details of documents relating to women in The National Archives at Kew. It is still far more detailed and extensive than anything available elsewhere on the web and has the benefit of ranging across all of the classes held at The National Archives. The original documents will be valuable for those teaching courses on: The Campaign for Women’s Suffrage in Britain, 1903-1928 and The granting of women’s suffrage in Colonial territories, 1930-1962. > More

Nineteenth Century Collections Online: Women: Transnational Networks (until 10 Feb 2018)

Concentrates on issues at the intersection of gender and class — from the late eighteenth century to the era of suffrage in the early twentieth century — through a transnational perspective. This collection deepens the already-comprehensive coverage of European movements included in Nineteenth Century Collections Online by adding sources from the United States and other regions. The focus of this collection is on major nineteenth-century trends, topics, and events as they relate to gender, including social reform, high and low culture, transnational networks, immigration, daily life, religion, and more. > More.
A list of titles in this resource is available.

Women’s Studies Archive: Issues and Identities (until 10 Feb 2018)

Traces the path of women’s issues from past to present, pulling primary sources from manuscripts, newspapers, periodicals. It captures the foundation of women’s movements, struggles and triumphs, focus on the social, political, and professional achievements of women throughout the nineteenth and twentieth century. Topics covered: History of Feminist Theory and Activism; domestic culture; lay and ordained church women; women in industry; women’s sexuality and gender expression; women’s education; women’s movement; women’s health and mental health; women and law; women and the control of their bodies; and women’s roles and interactions within society. > More.
A list of titles in this resource is available.

New: Women, War and Society, 1914–1918 (Archives Unbound)

Following a successful trial last year and thanks to the very generous donation by John and Jean Dunbabin, Oxford historians now have access to Women, War and Society, 1914–1918 (Archives Unbound).

This resource fully documents the essential contribution of women during the Great War as well as the revolutionary and permanent impact the War had on the personal, social and professional lives of these women. It is an important collection for research into 20th century social, political, military and gender history.

Women, War and Society, 1914–1918 - screenshotThe resource reproduces primary source material (115,225 images) brought together in the Imperial War Museum, London, and originally published by the Air Ministry, League of Mercy and War Fund, Purple Cross Service, Russian Relief Fund and many other organizations. This definitive digital collection of charity and international relief reports, pamphlets, photographs, press cuttings and more is fully searchable.

Poster: The Babies' Candidate. Mrs. How Martyn's Election Address. Suffrage And Politics. N.d. The Women at Work Collection, Imperial War Museum, London. The Imperial War Museum, London, United Kingdom. Archives Unbound. Web. 15 July 2016

Poster: The Babies’ Candidate. Mrs. How Martyn’s Election Address. Suffrage And Politics. N.d. The Women at Work Collection, Imperial War Museum, London. The Imperial War Museum, London, United Kingdom. Archives Unbound. Web. 15 July 2016

On behalf of the library and the Committee of the Library Provision and Strategy (CLiPS) in History, I would like to extend my deepest thanks to JOHN and JEAN DUNBABIN for donating sufficient funds to permanently add this resource to the library’s holding and ensure that future generation of historians have access to important source material on this period and topic.

Other useful resources:

Women in science in the archives: seminar 8 Sept 2016

8 September 2016, 9am-1pm
Venue: Lecture Theatre, Weston Library (Map)
Contact: svenja.kunze@bodleian.ox.ac.uk, 01865 283842

This half-day seminar will look at women’s engagement with science in the past through the Bodleian’s historical archives, trace the changing nature of their role, discuss the experiences of female scientists in the 21st century, and explore the challenges of preserving their archives in the future.

Women In Science in the Archives 8 Sept 2016The first part of the seminar will be dedicated to three prominent female scientists, represented in the Bodleian’s archives. Archivists, historians and biographers will give their perspectives on the life and work of:

  • astronomer and mathematician Mary Somerville (1780-1872)
  • physiologist and pathologist Mabel Purefoy FitzGerald (1872-1973)
  • biochemist and crystallographer Dorothy Hodgkin (1910-1994)

The second part of the seminar will bring 21st century women in science into the archives. Professor Frances Ashcroft will talk about her career as a physiologist, and the challenges and opportunities she has seen for women in science since the 1970s.

A panel of early career scientists from the University of Oxford will share their experiences as women in science today, and discuss with archivists and curators how their work can become part of the archives of the future.

View the seminar programme (pdf), including list of speakers.

After the seminar, there will be an opportunity to see selected items from the Bodleian’s Special Collections, and meet the archivists working on them. Please note that this curator-led display has a limited capacity, and places need to be booked separately.

Booking

The seminar is free but places are limited so please complete our booking form to reserve tickets in advance.

International Women’s Day celebration: resources for women’s history

In celebration of today’s International Women’s Day, here is a special plug for

British and Irish Women’s Letters and Diaries (BWLD)

Available to Oxford users, the BWLD includes the immediate experiences of 430 women, as revealed in approximately 80,000 pages of diaries and letters. Particular care has been taken to index this material so that it can be searched more thoroughly than ever before.  Each source has been carefully chosen using leading bibliographies.–The collection also includes biographies and an extensive annotated bibliography of the sources in the database.

Nice features: browse by historical event (e.g. Victory in Europe Day, May 8, 1945) or personal event (e.g. sstarting job):

Sunday July 4. [1915]

This is a truly awful place! My first day was something terrific. In the morning down came a sheef of 13 diet sheets one to each ward. I tried my best to puzzle them out, …

from West, Gabrielle, fl. 1914-1917, Diary of Gabrielle West, July, 1915, in World War I Diary of Miss G. West. Alexandria, VA: Alexander Street Press, 2004, pp. 212. Location of mss: Imperial War Museum, London.

Other databases of interest for women’s history:

Defining Gender, 1450-1910

Approximately 50,000 images of original documents relating to Gender Studies. The images will be sourced from about ten different libraries and archives around the world, including a strong core of document images from the Bodleian Library, Oxford.

The Gerritsen Collection (Women’s History Online, 1543-1945)

In the late 1800s, Dutch physician Aletta Jacobs and her husband C.V. Gerritsen began collecting books and periodicals reflecting the evolution of a feminist consciousness and women’s rights. By the time their successors finished their work in 1945, The Gerritsen Collection was the greatest single source for the study of women’s history in the world, with materials spanning four centuries and fifteen languages. This online resource delivers two million page images exactly as they appeared in the original printed works. Users can trace the evolution of feminism within a single country, as well as the impact of one country’s movement on those of the others. In many cases, it also provides easy access to primary sources otherwise available only in a few rare book rooms.

North American Women’s Letters and Diaries

This is the largest collection of women’s diaries and correspondence ever assembled. Spanning more than 300 years, this database brings the personal experiences of some 1,325 women to researchers, students, and general readers.

The collection includes some 150,000 pages of published letters and diaries from individuals writing from Colonial times to 1950, including more than 6,000 pages of previously unpublished materials. Drawn from more than 600 sources, including journal articles, pamphlets, newsletters, monographs, and conference proceedings, much of the material is in copyright. Represented are all age groups and life stages, all ethnicities, many geographical regions, the famous and the not so famous. It includes some 300 biographies to enhance the use of the database.

Orlando: Women’s writings in the British Isles from the Beginnings to the Present

Orlando provides entries on authors’ lives and writing careers, contextual material, timelines, sets of internal links, and bibliographies. Interacting with these materials creates a dynamic inquiry from any number of perspectives into centuries of women’s writing.

Women Writers Online

The Brown University Women Writers Project is a long-term research project devoted to early modern women’s writing and electronic text encoding. Their aim is to bring texts by pre-Victorian women writers out of the archive and make them accessible to a wide audience of teachers, students, scholars, and the general reader.

Websites

Check out our bookmarked webpages for women’s history on HFL Delicious. There’s much there so why not give us suggestions what else to bookmark?

New online collection tells story of British women’s struggle for the vote

Poster by Hilda Dallas, c 1912

A unique collection relating to British women’s fight for the vote 100 years ago has been revealed online yesterday through the Visual Arts Data Service (VADS).

The digitised material represents a selection of the vast collections housed at the Women’s Library at London Metropolitan University, and includes posters, photographs, postcards, badges, and other memorabilia relating to the British suffrage movement.

Particularly remarkable and moving items from the online collection include a photograph of a crowd attacking suffragettes, and the purse that was held by Emily Wilding Davison at the Epsom Derby in 1913, when she stepped in front of the horse of King George V, which resulted in her death four days later.

The Women’s Library is the oldest and largest collection of women’s history in the UK and was founded in 1926 as the Library of the London Society for Women’s Service, a non-militant organisation led by leading suffragist, Millicent Fawcett. It is now held by the London Metropolitan University and is an internationally acclaimed specialist library, archive, and museum with collections that have broadened since its inception to include a wide range of subjects which focus on the lives of women in Britain. The collection now consists of 60,000 books and pamphlets, 3500 periodical titles, over 450 archives, and 5000 museum objects.

The collection of valuable documents, from the Women’s Library and the Parliamentary Archives, which tell the story of the women’s suffrage movement has also recently been selected as one of twenty collections to represent the outstanding heritage of the United Kingdom on the UNESCO UK Memory of the World Register.

The online selection provides a taster of these extensive collections, and adds to the national repository of over 120,000 digitised images available through VADS from a range of collections across the UK. In particular, this latest addition complements the existing online collection of Women’s Library Suffrage Banners, which includes almost 250 banners and associated artworks which have been made available online for free use in education and research.

To view the new Women’s Library Suffrage Collection, see http://www.vads.ac.uk/collections/WLS.