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Fanny and Stella The Young Men Who Shocked Victorian England by Neil McKenna
  

Fanny and Stella The Young Men Who Shocked Victorian England

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A few of the secrets of the Victorian age are revealed in Neil McKenna’s history of two men, Frederick Park and Ernest Boulton who liked to cross-dress as Fanny and Stella. This was no secret and it was inevitable that the police would catch up with them, this they did and a trial followed. In a story touched by comedy and sadness, a thriving Victorian underworld is exposed, a very different world to the one the Victorians wished to portray in history.

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The Secret Life of Oscar Wilde, Neil McKenna

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Three very lucky winners will each receive a signed copy by Dame Vera Lynn and her daughter Virginia of Dame Vera Lynn's memoir - Keep Smiling Through; My Wartime Story - written with her daughter Virginia Lewis-Jones, together with a DVD of the birthday concert held in her honour to celebrate her 100th birthday earlier this year.

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Synopsis

Fanny and Stella The Young Men Who Shocked Victorian England by Neil McKenna

28th April 1870. The flamboyantly dressed Miss Fanny Park and Miss Stella Boulton are causing a stir in the Strand Theatre. All eyes are riveted upon their lascivious oglings of the gentlemen in the stalls. Moments later they are led away by the police. What followed was a scandal that shocked and titillated Victorian England in equal measure. It turned out that the alluring Miss Fanny Park and Miss Stella Boulton were no ordinary young women. Far from it. In fact, they were young men who liked to dress as women. When the Metropolitan Police launched a secret campaign to bring about their downfall, they were arrested and subjected to a sensational show trial in Westminster Hall. As the trial of 'the Young Men in Women's Clothes' unfolded, Fanny and Stella's extraordinary lives as wives and daughters, actresses and whores were revealed to an incredulous public. With a cast of peers, politicians and prostitutes, drag queens, doctors and detectives, Fanny and Stella is a Victorian peepshow, exposing the startling underbelly of nineteenth-century London. By turns tragic and comic, meticulously researched and dazzlingly written, Fanny and Stella is an enthralling tour-de-force.

Reviews

Praise for The Secret Life of Oscar Wilde:

'A groundbreaking new biography ... An entertaining and fascinating (sometimes jaw-dropping) insight into Victorian homosexual practices. - Observer

'A superb new portrait of the secret life of one of the 19th century's most tragic and beguiling figures.' - Washington Post

'Intriguing and entertaining ... McKenna makes an impassioned case for re-gaying Wilde.' - The Times

About the Author

Award-winning journalist and former deputy editor of Elle Decoration, Neil McKenna has also worked as an editor for Channel 4. Working extensively in the gay press he is known for initiating the campaign for gay law reform in the Isle of Man and leading the fight against Clause 25. He is the author of two ground-breaking books about male homosexuality and Aids in the developing world: On the Margins (1996) and The Silent Epidemic (1998). His debut biography, The Secret Life of Oscar Wilde, was published in 2003 to wide acclaim.

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Book Info

Publication date

16th January 2014

Author

Neil McKenna

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Publisher

Faber & Faber

Format

Paperback
416 pages

Categories

Biography / Autobiography
eBook Favourites
eBook Favourites

True stories
Gender studies, gender groups
Social & cultural history

ISBN

9780571231911

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