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Women and children first

Rosalind Mitchison, 1 June 1989

Wet Nursing: A History from Antiquity to the Present 
by Valerie Fildes.
Blackwell, 300 pp., £19.50, September 1988, 0 631 15831 6
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Women and Marriage in 19th-Century England 
by Joan Perkin.
Routledge, 342 pp., £30, December 1988, 0 415 00771 2
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Consumer Behaviour and Material Culture in Britain 1660-1760 
by Lorna Weatherill.
Routledge, 252 pp., £30, July 1988, 0 415 00723 2
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Childhood in 19th-Century France: Work, Health and Education among the ‘Classes Populaires’ 
by Colin Heywood.
Cambridge, 350 pp., £30, September 1988, 0 521 35038 7
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... is part of female reaction against the barbaric treatment of women in modern hospital parturition. Joan Perkin’s study of marriage is written with refreshing vigour. Her material is divided by class lines. The aristocratic woman had a privileged position, for her family would have used the available legal devices to ensure that she had control of her ...

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