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Fallacies

Peter Laslett, 19 February 1987

Sex in Middlesex: Popular Mores in a Massachusetts County 1649-1699 
by Roger Thompson.
Massachusetts, 252 pp., £28.50, October 1986, 0 87023 516 8
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Breasts, Bottles and Babies: A History of Infant Feeding 
by Valerie Fildes.
Edinburgh, 462 pp., £19.75, August 1986, 0 85224 462 2
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... to which Stone seemingly now owes little in the way of allegiance. Similarly, the book by Valerie Fildes has many other purposes besides the falsification of a further proposition put forward in the 1970s: the proposition that, in the past, babies were neglected and mothers lacking in affection. Indeed, Breasts, Bottles and Babies is a valiant ...

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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... his milk-mother’s descendants, nor the milk kin of his own children or other near relatives. Fildes concentrates on her topic to the exclusion of outside influences. She does not give much attention to the interesting question of why wet nursing ceased to be fashionable in Britain yet remained in wide use in France. The change in Britain seems to belong ...

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