Lecture: From sex to the suffragettes

Podcast: Keynote Lecture Annual Conference 2019

By Dr Fern Ridell, published 14th June 2019

Uncomfortable histories

Over the last few years, we have seen a widespread cultural failure in our history. From the rose-tinted nostalgia of politicians to a rise in destructive ideologies, history has become weaponised by those who seek to misuse, misrepresent and misunderstand it. At the same time, the field of history is undergoing rapid, exciting and much-needed changes, reversing the status quo and bringing to light histories that have previously been ignored or passed over.

In this lecture, Dr Fern Riddell will discuss the challenges of bringing ‘uncomfortable histories’ to light – ones that contradict our ideas about the past and yet give us a far clearer understanding of the world as it was, rather than just the world as some might wish it to have been. Focusing on her research into suffragette terrorism and Victorian attitudes to sexuality, she also explores why it is so important to teach these histories in our homes, our schools and our universities.

This keynote lecture took place at the Historical Association Annual Conference in May 2019. 

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