Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Britannia's Daughters - Joanna Trollope

Britannia's Daughters, Women of The British Empire is about about the role of women in the expansion and the building of the British Empire. Some of their adventures and achievements were impressive and the conditions in which they lived, especially the working class, were difficult and hard.

I found this a very interesting book even if a bit dry, the book follows close to it's sources: letters, diaries and other documents and sometimes it seems more like a history text book. It is fascinating however to know the lives of the women throughout the Empire, how different opportunities could be found being out of England but how life's hardships still depended much of the woman's status in society. I'm always very interested in the history of women because equal rights is modern concept and for a long time the women that are known in history are the exceptions, the ones that really stand out and conquered some independence.

It's easy to believe that Trollope really did a huge amount of research as every account is extremely detailed portraying not only different countries but also classes and professions (from the diplomat's wives to prostitutes). And it's a wonderful resource to know a bit more about the history of women in the Victorian period.

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