Sears, Clare. 2015. Arresting Dress: Cross-Dressing, Law, and Fascination in Nineteenth-Century San Francisco. Durham: Duke University Press. ISBN 978-0-8223-5758-2
A study of the intersections of gender and race.
I have a tendency to hold to a "last in, first out" policy for this series. If I've just acquired a new book, it tends to go to the top of the list to cover. So the final new work before the LHMP goes on hiatus for a while is something just published this year, that came to my attention when Malinda Lo mentioned it in the context of some research she's doing for a new project. (And if she's going to be writing something about Gold Rush era San Francisco, I definitely want to read it!)
While the title of Sears' book indicates a focus on cross-dressing, in fact she's looking at a whole set of factors that intersect under the later 19th century concern for "public decency" and the desire to police (literally) who and what is allowed to be visibly present in public urban space. Because of my own personal interests, this blog tends to focus on European topics, so I'm delighted to include books like this that show a very different picture.
Even though I'm going to be taking a break from the grueling schedule of reading and summarizing enough new material for three posts a week, I will definitely be keeping the Lesbian Historic Motif Project in people's minds with at least one post a week. It may be reprises of particularly good sources. It may be topical link-posts, drawing together entries with some particular theme. It may simply be lists of publications I'd like to cover in the future.
And I've had at least one inquiry about guest posts for the Project. I would love to include contributions from other people, covering material I haven't addressed yet. At some point, I'll post guidelines for what I'm looking for and the sort of format and approach I'd like to aim for.
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