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than establishing definitions is to trace the ways in which single women have been regarded in Western culture, specifically Britain and America, over the past two centuries. I feel myself on some kind of mission to reclaim the word ‘spinster’ as, if not positive, at least neutral, though I think this may be doomed. Most dictionaries have a note that the term is usually derogatory. Even the lovely sounding Italian name for spinster – Zitella – has ‘pej.’ in brackets after the word in the dictionary. hH In my father’s family, there have been women who never married

in Austerity baby
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in the eye. This business of meaning and symbolism turns out to be rather tricky, though I am inclined to default to my rather automatic resistance to such universal, socio-biological claims – at least until persuaded otherwise. We are on safer ground, though, in looking at the clear evidence for the changing importance of blue throughout the history of Western culture. This history is nicely summarised by Colm Tóibín, in a 2004 catalogue essay for a Dublin exhibition called ‘Blue’: ‘Blue was the banished orphan who lived to take the throne’. He bases this on his

in Austerity baby
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represent bodies consuming therapeutic light – soaking up its rays – and the natural surroundings and technological paraphernalia enabling such exposures. Together they offer a salient point of entry into the history and visual culture of light therapy in Britain during the early twentieth century, the subject of this book. This supplement, which collapsed medical and popular conceptions of light therapy, evinces the central role light

in Soaking up the rays
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Nederveen Pieterse, White on Black: Images of Africa and Blacks in Western Popular Culture ( New Haven, Conn. : Yale University Press, 1992); and Marianna Torgovnick, Gone Primitive: Savage Intellects, Modern Lives ( Chicago, Ill. : University of Chicago Press, 1991). 160  Thedering, Sunlight as Healer , pp. 24, 28; and Bryder

in Soaking up the rays
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Herz at the Hotel Windsor in Nice, referring to Monsieur Siesel. ‘He will help you.’ It adds ‘2200 francs with Aunt Martha are for you’. It’s unclear which person will Tante Leonie [ 121 ] [ 122 ] Extract of letter, October 1940 Western Union cablegram Julie, Marcel and Prosper Siesel Austerity baby Western Union telegram, December 1940 [ 123 ] Death certificate for Sigmund Kahn, December 1940 Tante Leonie [ 124 ] help, and how. And I have no idea why it was written in French, if it was between Eri and Leonie, who wrote in German. Since it addresses

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that phenomena doubly served the sciences. 36 This is exemplified by the contemporaneous growth of spectroscopy as a field. Spectroscopy emerged, according to Klaus Hentschel, as a visual culture that came to dominate the sciences from the late nineteenth century onwards, in part because of the use of photography to aid it visualising and measuring the electromagnetic spectrum. 37 Spectroscopes, alongside various models of

in Soaking up the rays
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Annunciation Artist unknown (Bruges), Annunciation, c. 1520 [ 228 ] Francesco Pesellino, Diptych – Annunciation (detail), c. 1450–55 Austerity baby [ 229 ] Petrus Christus, Die Verkündigung an Maria, 1452 Rogier van der Weyden, The Annunciation, c. 1455 Annunciation [ 230 ] Perhaps as perverse as my positive imagining of the malignant tumour, and especially given my aversion to displaced conversations about childbirth, is my long-standing attraction to the scene of the Annunciation in Western art. The appeal is, I’m sure, connected with the fact that the Feast of

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to the United States, followed by their only sister, Lizzie, who had first gone to Manchester and then moved to the United States in about 1910. Jacob was the father of Henry Norr, with whom my narrative began. I know less about my grandmother’s history. It seems she was born in Bessarabia at the western edge of the Pale of Settlement and now part of Romania. There were rumours in the family that she was related to the artist Mark Gertler (one of the reasons I took an interest in his work and have written about him), but his family came to England from Galicia in

in Austerity baby