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March 29 @ 2:00 pm
  • Non-fiction

Inconvenient People: Tales from the Victorian Lunacy Panics — Women in White, Eccentric Heirs, Troubled Vicars

Sarah Wise


Epping Library
St John’s Road
Epping, CM16 5DN
(£5 25yrs and under)

Box Office:

Mercury Theatre
01206 573948

The 19th century saw a series of scandals concerning sane individuals being locked away in lunatic asylums – the victims of unscrupulous persons, who wanted to be rid of a ‘difficult’ family member, spouse or friend. But who were the victims of this trade? And to what extent was it carried on? Sarah Wise examines a number of disputed lunacy cases – ranging from the 1820s to the 1890s – and reveals the surprisingly wide variety of people whose eccentricities landed them in a ‘madhouse’.

Sarah graduated in English Literature and has a Master’s Degree in Victorian Studies from Birkbeck College, University of London. She teaches 19th-century social history and literature to both undergraduates and adult learners, and is visiting professor at the University of California’s London Study Center, and a guest lecturer at City University. Her most recent book, Inconvenient People, was shortlisted for the 2014 Wellcome Prize.


Deeply researched and gripping…Much of it is also hilarious.  AN Wilson, Mail on Sunday

She has the true social historian’s ability to make her period come alive. Dr Anthony Daniels, The Spectator



Essex Book Festival - No Date - White on Red


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