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Narratives in the courtroom: female poisoners in mid-nineteenth century England


Nagy, V, Narratives in the courtroom: female poisoners in mid-nineteenth century England, European Journal of Criminology, 11, (2) pp. 213-227. ISSN 1477-3708 (2014) [Refereed Article]

Copyright Statement

The Author(s) 2013

DOI: doi:10.1177/1477370813494841


Three Essex women were accused of poisoning their family members in the mid-19th century. While their crimes were not out of the ordinary, the legal responses to these three women were irregular and highlight how female deviance was a concern to the legal system in England during the 19th century. Historians have embraced the possibility of studying crime and violence in order to better understand how societies and their legal systems responded to deviance (real or perceived). This paper presents the cases of the three Essex poisoners, as well as the narratives created in the courtroom to explain their deviance, and illustrates how and why criminologists should turn to historical criminal cases in order to further criminological understandings of crime and violence.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:poisonings, stereotypes, femininity, nineteenth-century english history, legal narratives
Research Division:History, Heritage and Archaeology
Research Group:Historical studies
Research Field:British history
Objective Division:Culture and Society
Objective Group:Understanding past societies
Objective Field:Understanding Europe's past
UTAS Author:Nagy, V (Dr Vicky Nagy)
ID Code:136424
Year Published:2014
Web of Science® Times Cited:4
Deposited By:Sociology and Criminology
Deposited On:2019-12-19
Last Modified:2020-05-18

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