© 2012

Femininity, Crime and Self-Defence in Victorian Literature and Society

From Dagger-Fans to Suffragettes

  • Authors

Part of the Crime Files Series book series (CF)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xiv
  2. Introduction

    1. Emelyne Godfrey
      Pages 1-11
  3. ‘A Door Open, A Door Shut’

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 13-13
    2. Emelyne Godfrey
      Pages 15-25
    3. Emelyne Godfrey
      Pages 26-32
  4. Fighting for Emancipation

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 65-65
    2. Emelyne Godfrey
      Pages 67-85
    3. Emelyne Godfrey
      Pages 86-106
  5. The Pre-War Female Gaze

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 107-107
    2. Emelyne Godfrey
      Pages 132-155
    3. Emelyne Godfrey
      Pages 156-157
  6. Back Matter
    Pages 158-192

About this book


This exploration into the development of women's self-defence from 1850 to 1914 features major writers, including H.G. Wells, Elizabeth Robins and Richard Marsh, and encompasses an unusually wide-ranging number of subjects from hatpin crimes to the development of martial arts for women.


English literature Victorian era women

About the authors

EMELYNE GODFREY graduated with a Ph.D. in English from Birkbeck College, University of London, UK. A freelance writer and researcher, she writes academic articles, dictionary and encyclopaedia entries and poetry, and gives lectures to societies. She is a regular contributor to History Today and is the Publicity Officer for the H.G. Wells Society.

Bibliographic information


"Femininity, Crime and Self-Defense is a superb addition to New Woman studies and a potential rich resource for scholars in late-Victorian and Edwardian literary scholarship." - Lena Wånggren, University of Edinburgh, UK

"Opening up new areas for research in the fields of women's history, but also detective fiction and urban studies, this book's major contribution to Victorian and Edwardian studies is in unsettling the reader's perceptions, insisting that we look again at what we think we already know." - Carolyn Oulton, Canterbury Christ Church University, UK