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CHC Season 1, Episode 9: The Challenges of Childhood History

The women in the banner are conference Tessa Chynoweth and Catherine Rose – conveners of “Challenges of the History of Childhood,” January 16, 2015 – Queen Mary University of London. The conference schedule is available here.

The Challenges of Childhood History

This episode of CHC offers video recordings of the two keynote addresses delivered January 16, 2015 at “Challenges of the History of Childhood” hosted by Queen Mary University of London.

The meeting was organized by Catherine Rose and Tessa Chynoweth.  It brought together an interdisciplinary group of scholars to share ideas about common problems facing the historical study of childhood.  The one-day event offered 14 papers dealing broadly with the relationships between ideas and lived experience within the field.  It called for a discussion of memory, interdisciplinarity, the historicity of age, cultural comparison, institutional space, and the significance of historical research on childhood.

Pooley Keynote Lecture

In "Children's writing and subjectivity in late-nineteenth and early-twentieth-century England," SiȃnPooley provided a close reading of children's contributions to and correspondence with late-19th/early-20th century periodicals and their editors.  She explores children's writing, family relations, public presence, and the production of the self to pose questions about agency, power, and causality. 

Click here to access an audio recording synced with slides from Pooley's keynote lecture.  


Select Publications by Sian Pooley:

'Children's writing and the popular press in late-nineteenth- and early-twentieth-century England', History Workshop Journal 80 (forthcoming 2015). 

'“Leagues of Love” and “Column Comrades”: Children’s Responses to War in late-Victorian and Edwardian England', in L. Paul and R. Johnston (eds), Approaching War: Childhood, Culture and the First World War, ed. by L. Paul and R. Johnston (Palgrave Macmillan, forthcoming).

Co-edited with K. Qureshi, Parenthood Between Generations: Transforming Reproductive Cultures (Berghahn: Oxford, forthcoming).

‘Parenthood, child-rearing and fertility in England, 1850-1914’, History of the Family, 18:1 (2013), pp. 83-106.

‘“All we parents want is that our children’s health and lives should be regarded”: child health and parental concern in England, c.1860-1910’, pooledSocial History of Medicine, 23:3, (2010), pp. 528-48.

Co-edited with C.G. Pooley and R. Lawton, The diary of Elizabeth Lee: growing up on Merseyside in the late nineteenth century (Liverpool: Liverpool University Press, 2010).

‘Domestic servants and their urban employers: a case study of Lancaster 1880-1914’, Economic History Review, 62: 2 (2009), pp. 405-29.


About Siân Pooley

Siȃn Pooley earned her doctorate from St. John's College, Cambridge in 2010.  Her research interests center on parenthood, childhood, identity and social policy in nineteenth- and twentieth-century Britain.  Currently she is a tutorial fellow in Modern British History at Magdalen College, Oxford.


Newton Keynote Lecture

In "Voices of Sick Children: Challenges and Solutions in the History of Childhood," Hannah Newton explored five major issues: 

(1) a lack of written records by children; 

(2) the temptation to assess authenticity of past children's actions based on the present;

(3) the difficulty of assessing emotions and pain of persons in the past;  

(4) urge to make ethical judgments about past practices; 

(5) lack of evidence regarding poor children. 

Click here to view a video recording to Newton's keynote lecture.

Click here to view the slide show to follow along with Newton's lecture.

Special Note: the PowerPoint presentation to Newton's talk has not been synchronized with the video recording (nor were we able to create a 'split-screen' presentation). If you open both links in separate windows and use the pause button to halt the slides as necessary, you should be able to follow along nicely.


Select Publications by Hannah Newton:

‘“Nature Concocts & Expels”: The Agents and Processes of Recovery from Disease in Early Modern England’ (forthcoming) in Social History of Medicine (2015).

The Sick Child in Early Modern England, 1580–1720 (Oxford University Press, 2012; paperback 2014).

'The Sick Child in Early Modern England'Endeavour, 38 (2014), 122–29.

'Children's Physic: Medical Perceptions and Treatment of Sick Children in Early Modern England, c. 1580–1720'newtonSocial History of Medicine, 23 (2010), 456–74 (open access).

'"Very Sore Nights & Days": The Child's Experience of Illness in Early Modern England, c. 1580–1720'Medical History, 55 (2011), 153–182 (open access).


About Hannah Newton

Hannah Newton earned her doctorate from the University of Exeter in 2009.  She was a Wellcome Trust Medical History Fellow 2011-14, and currently holds positions as lecturer at the University of Reading and Director of Studies for the History and Philosophy of Science at St. John's College, Cambridge. Her research interests focus upon the history of medicine, emotion, and childhood in early modern England.

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