INSPIRING FUTURES

Dreadful beyond description: Mary Carpenter's prison reform writings and female convicts in Britain and India.

Schwan, Anne (2010) Dreadful beyond description: Mary Carpenter's prison reform writings and female convicts in Britain and India. European Journal of English Studies, 14 (2). pp. 107-120. ISSN 1382-5577

Full text not available from this repository. (Request a copy)

Abstract/Description

Mary Carpenter (1807-77) was one of mid-Victorian England's most prolific social reformers, starting her career with a focus on the reformation of juvenile offenders. This article considers Carpenter's writings on female convicts in Britain and India and illustrates how her ideas about criminal reformation become discursively connected with a larger project of building a coherent nation as the basis of a powerful empire. Carpenter constructs the bodies of women convicts in Britain and India as a threatening influence on future generations and the Empire as a whole and calls on white middle-class women to reform such 'alien' bodies. The essay explores the intersections of domestic female-led reformism and the imperial project of control over foreign bodies. It demonstrates that imperial history, the history of crime and punishment and gender history must be brought together in order to explore fully the convergence of ideologies of gender, class and racial identity in the mid-Victorian period.

Item Type: Article
Print ISSN: 1382-5577
Electronic ISSN: 1744-4233
Uncontrolled Keywords: Mary Carpenter; prison reform; convicts; femal prisoners; Britain; India;
University Divisions/Research Centres: Edinburgh Napier University, Institute for Creative Industries
Dewey Decimal Subjects: 300 Social sciences > 360 Social problems & social services > 365 Penal & related institutions
Library of Congress Subjects: H Social Sciences > HN Social history and conditions. Social problems. Social reform
Item ID: 4536
Depositing User: Mrs Lyn Gibson
Date Deposited: 20 Jun 2011 11:38
Last Modified: 13 Dec 2012 11:23
URI: http://researchrepository.napier.ac.uk/id/eprint/4536

Actions (login required)

View Item

Edinburgh Napier University is a registered Scottish charity. Registration number SC018373