Ourshelves is a place where writers from the legendary feminist publishing house Virago will talk about their cultural worlds. Host Lucy Scholes will be diving into writers’ bookshelves, record collections and recollections to discover what inspires them. See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
She-Merchants, Buccaneers and Gentlewomen: British Women in India 1600 – 1900
The first British women to set foot in India did so in the very early seventeenth century, two and a half centuries before the Raj.
Women made their way to India for exactly the same reasons men did – to carve out a better life for themselves. In the early days, India was a place where the slates of ‘blotted pedigrees’ were wiped clean; bankrupts given a chance to make good; a taste for adventure satisfied – for women. They went and worked as milliners, bakers, dress-makers, actresses, portrait painters, maids, shop-keepers, governesses, teachers, boarding house proprietors, midwives, nurses, missionaries, doctors, geologists, plant-collectors, writers, travellers, and – most surprising of all – traders. […Learn More]