Polly Clarke's Reviews > Inconvenient People: Lunacy, Liberty and the Mad-Doctors in Victorian England

Inconvenient People by Sarah  Wise
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Wow, what a tomb of a book. It started getting interesting about half way through in the chapter 'The Woman in Yellow' referring to Rosina, Edward Bulwer-Lytton's wife and the circles of friends he hung around with, including Charles Dickens, who all snubbed Rosina and her literary works. Interestingly, at the same time as reading this book I find myself reading 84 Charing Cross Road, where Helene Hanff refers to Dicken's work as boring. I tend to agree. The more I read about this fellow and his followers, the more I dislike the man. I'm going off course here but these were the very people that had influence on the system.

The point being that Sarah Wise includes a comprehensive background and reasons for the way people were manipulating the system through ease of chance, influence, status and politics. This book read very much as a thesis for a Masters Degree at first and I was tiring of it until this chapter 6. I became enthralled in the way people thought at the time - including how spiritualism fitted into all of this and is a wonderful example of how the Victorian's started to change it's mind on certain aspects of religion, acceptance and tolerance.

I really liked this book and would have no hesitation to read a follow-up on the way the health system has treated mental health patients in the 20th Century - a follow-up is implied in the last few words which makes you want to read more.
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Reading Progress

August 28, 2014 – Shelved
August 28, 2014 – Shelved as: to-read
September 2, 2014 – Shelved as: library-orders
September 12, 2014 – Shelved as: factual-interest
November 24, 2014 – Started Reading
December 7, 2014 –
page 33
6.65%
December 9, 2014 –
page 118
23.79%
December 10, 2014 –
page 178
35.89%
December 10, 2014 –
page 178
35.89%
December 12, 2014 –
page 252
50.81%
December 14, 2014 – Shelved as: the-2014-reading-challenge-group
December 14, 2014 – Finished Reading
July 26, 2015 – Shelved as: books-set-in-the-uk

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