By A. James Hammerton
Cruelty and Companionship is an account of the intimate yet darker facets of marriage in Victorian and Edwardian England. Hammerton attracts upon formerly unpublished fabric from the files of the divorce court docket and magistrates' courts to problem many well known perspectives approximately altering family members patterns.
His findings open a unprecedented window onto the sexual politics of daily life and the regimen tensions which conditioned marriage in center and dealing category households. utilizing modern proof starting from prescriptive texts and public debate to autobiography and fiction, Hammerton examines the serious public scrutiny which observed the regimen publicity of marital breakdown, and charts a transforming into critique of men's behaviour in marriage which more and more demanded legislation and reform. The severe discourse which resulted, starting from paternalist to feminist, casts new mild at the origins and trajectory of 19th century feminism, criminal switch and our figuring out of the altering expression of masculinity.