Revival, radicalism, recalibration: Reflecting on women’s amateur rowing in the long 1960s
Monday June 10th 2019
It’s a real pleasure to be one of the convenors for the British Society of Sports History sponsored Sport & Leisure History seminar series at the Institute of Historical Research. And for the this term we have a diverse range of speakers and subjects to pique the interest of the historically inclined.
Our next paper will be given by Lisa Taylor, who is an AHRC Collaborative Doctoral Partnership-funded PhD student studying at Manchester Metropolitan University with a focus on competitive women’s rowing in Britain. Her research is also undertken in collaboration with the River & Rowing Museum in Henley-on-Thames, who have an extensive archive on watery things from river literature to rowing club records.
And it’s the ideal time to have a seminar around rowing since the UK’s most prestigious regatta will take place later this month at Henley. Beside the Thames-side society frolics of boaters and blazers the real meat of the weekend is fierce comeptition between some of the world’s finest athletes. Come along on Monday to find out about the key figures in the revival of women’s rowing in the post-War era.
To whet your appetite read Lisa’s abstract below prior to coming along …
Women’s amateur rowing was firmly established in England by the outbreak of the Second World War, although undertaken only by a small number of women. The late 1940s and early 1950s represented a period of revival for the sport, domestically and across Europe. Revival, however, is suggestive of continuity rather than change, and it wasn’t until later – through the long 1960s and beyond – that more radical change would become apparent within the sport. This seminar aims to reflect on the equivocal recalibration of sporting and sexual norms within the women’s rowing community during the long 1960s, using oral history and archival material. It will also consider the interpretive possibilities and limitations of these different methodological approaches.
This is only the one of a number of series of stimulating talks to be held at the IHR in the S&L series. For the details of seminars forthcoming in 2019 go to the IHR’s website. The talks take place in the Past & Present room on the second floor – doors open from 17:15 and the seminar will start promptly at 17:30. I hope to see you there.
Blue Badge guide to London and academic specialising in early twentieth century history. Blogging on history, academia, and food and culture in the capital (and occasionally elsewhere).