Woman in a Man’s World : Ceri Carter on Magdalen Lloyd

Photograph: Ceri Carter at Women's Archive of Wales Conference

Ceri Carter, USW History graduate and research student, spoke at Swansea today on Magdalen Lloyd, whose letters from London give us a rare perspective on early modern women’s history. Ceri used Magdalen’s letters – featuring controlling cousins, persistent suitors, and an exacting mistress described as too stubborn to die – to show that life in service in London with all of its constraints still represented a measure of independence for this seventeenth-century Welsh woman.

Magdalen, who held firm to her ambition of returning to her ‘own country’, was just one of the women whose lives were re-examined at this 18th annual conference of the Women’s Archive of Wales. The organisation was founded in 1997 by University of Glamorgan (now USW) historians Ursula Masson and Deirdre Beddoe.

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