Jeudi 27 octobre 2022 à 17h (salle D421 à Serpente) :
Julia Laite (Birkbeck, University of London), ‘Finding Lydia Harvey: reflections on global microhistory, creative non-fiction, and playing with scales in the The Disappearance of Lydia Harvey ‘
Lydia Harvey boarded a steamship in Wellington, New Zealand in January of 1910 bound for Argentina, where she was forced to sell sex in Buenos Aires by the people who had trafficked her there. They later brought her to London, where she was discovered by the Metropolitan Police and became the star witness in their case. The Disappearance of Lydia Harvey traces this story, chases Lydia through the archive, and reveals the entangled lives of her traffickers, their prosecutors, and those who sold and used Lydia’s story for their own ends.
In this talk, Julia Laite will examine the digital methodologies that made this global microhistory possibly, explore the potential of creative non-fiction and storytelling in historical scholarship, and discuss the ethics and practicalities of rescuing someone from ‘the condescension of posterity’.
Julia Laite is Professor of History at the Department of History, Classics and Archaeology at Birkbeck, University of London. She researches and teaches on the history of women, crime, sexuality and migration in the nineteenth and twentieth century British world. Her latest book, The Disappearance of Lydia Harvey: A true story of sex, crime, and the meaning of justice (Profile, 2021) won the Crime Writer’s Association Gold Dagger for Non-Fiction and the Bert Roth Award for New Zealand Labour History.