This book can be described as an 'oblique memoir'. The central underlying and repeated themes of the book are exile and displacement; lives (and deaths) during the Third Reich; mother-daughter and sibling relationships; the generational transmission of trauma and experience; transatlantic reflections; and the struggle for creative expression. Stories mobilised, and people encountered, in the course of the narrative include: the internment of aliens in Britain during the Second World War; cultural life in Rochester, New York, in the 1920s; the social and personal meanings of colour(s). It also includes the industrialist and philanthropist, Henry Simon of Manchester, including his relationship with the Norwegian explorer, Fridtjof Nansen; the liberal British campaigner and MP of the 1940s, Eleanor Rathbone; reflections on the lives and images of spinsters. The text is supplemented and interrupted throughout by images (photographs, paintings, facsimile documents), some of which serve to illustrate the story, others engaging indirectly with the written word. The book also explains how forced exile persists through generations through a family history. It showcases the differences between English and American cultures. The book focuses on the incidence of cancers caused by exposure to radioactivity in England, and the impact it had on Anglo-American relations.
2: Provincial matters
Thirty years before Richard Hoggart lived in Rochester, Kathleen McEnery
Cunningham presided at the centre of a lively cultural scene there. In
1914, she had married Francis Cunningham, then secretary and general
manager of James Cunningham, Son and Company, a luxury coach- and
car-making company. She was probably introduced to Cunningham
by his cousin, Rufus Dryer, a good friend of hers in New York and, like
her, an artist and a student of Robert Henri at the Art Students League
a few years earlier. Before her marriage, she lived in New
Gothic legacies: Jane Eyre in Elizabeth
Stoddard’s New England
‘What do you think of those scenes in Jane Eyre where she watches with a
professional eye the rising of [Rochester’s] passional emotions, and skilfully prevents any culmination of feeling by changing her manner? – Did
anybody ever notice it?’1 These questions come from a letter, dated 5 May
1860, to the American writer and critic James Russell Lowell, from an
aspiring New England writer, Elizabeth Drew Barstow Stoddard. Lowell
had recently accepted one of Stoddard’s short stories
Bordering intimacy is a study of how borders and dominant forms of intimacy, such as family, are central to the governance of postcolonial states such as Britain. The book explores the connected history between contemporary border regimes and the policing of family with the role of borders under European and British empires. Building upon postcolonial, decolonial and black feminist theory, the investigation centres on how colonial bordering is remade in contemporary Britain through appeals to protect, sustain and make family life. Not only was family central to the making of colonial racism but claims to family continue to remake, shore up but also hide the organisation of racialised violence in liberal states. Drawing on historical investigations, the book investigates the continuity of colonial rule in numerous areas of contemporary government – family visa regimes, the policing of sham marriages, counterterror strategies, deprivation of citizenship, policing tactics, integration policy. In doing this, the book re-theorises how we think of the connection between liberal government, race, family, borders and empire. In using Britain as a case, this opens up further insights into the international/global circulations of liberal empire and its relationship to violence.
The above event, and the narrative of Charlotte Bronte’s Jane Eyre more
broadly, provides a compelling theorisation of familial domesticity and
the regulation of mobility under the British Empire. Bertha Mason, the
subject of the above passage, is presented as the first ‘creole’ wife of Mr
Rochester, one of the central protagonists in the novel. Her incarceration
in the attic of Rochester’s house remains a powerful example of the
nature of racialisation and control in Victorian England. This chapter
uses the figure of Bertha and her
And (not so trivial) living in the least beautiful apartment I’ve ever had.
Was it time to blame everything on America instead?
At about the time of my revisionist thoughts, I reread Richard Hoggart’s
account of his year in the United States. By coincidence, he spent
this year (1956–57) at the University of Rochester, where I taught for
a decade, after I left California. Earlier, and just over ten years after
his stay in the United States, I knew him for a while at the University
of Birmingham, where I was a postgraduate student in sociology
’s marriage proposal and its basis in his desire
for respectability, instead marrying Rochester in a celebration of
mutual love. Critics such as Eugenia C. DeLamotte point to the novel as
having a ‘domestic’ ending with a sexually tamed
husband. 114 I argue in
contrast that the novel’s conclusion emphasises the role of the
sexual desires between Jane and Rochester in creating a kinship bond
Paul Greenough, Stuart Blume, and Christine Holmberg
P. Baldwin, Contagion and the State in Europe,
1830–1930 (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1999).
D. Brunton, The Politics of Vaccination: Practice
and Policy in England, Wales, Ireland and Scotland, 1800–1874
(Rochester: University of Rochester Press, 2008
illness , 452–70 . Newcastle : Sage .
Campion , J. , Bhugra , D. , Bailey , S. , and Marmot , M. ( 2013 ). Inequality and mental disorders: Opportunities for action . Lancet , 382 ( 9888 ): 183–4 .
Cantor , D. and Ramsden , E. ( 2014 ). Stress, shock, and adaptation in the twentieth century . Rochester, NY : University of Rochester Press .
Dannenberg , A.L. , Jackson , R.J. , Frumkin , H. , Schieber , R.A. , Pratt , M. , Kochtitzky , C. , and Tilson , H.H. ( 2003 ). The impact of community design and land-use choices on public
destroy their partnership. For me, the story starts
in Rochester, New York.
When I interviewed Elizabeth Holahan in Rochester in 2002, she told me
that Kathleen McEnery had made small portraits of her and of her
sister Margaret. She told me a little about her sister, who died quite
young and who, she said, had had a warm friendship with McEnery’s
husband, Francis Cunningham. Margaret is the rather frail-looking
young woman in a checked dress.
I didn’t know – there was no reason for her to mention it – that she
had two other sisters (and, I think, a