BOOK REVIEW / Paperbacks: Love in the Time of Victoria - Francoise Barret-Ducrocq, trs John Howe: Penguin, pounds 6.99

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The Independent Culture
From the faded blue files of London's Foundling Hospital, a French academic unearths the sexual testimonies of 19th-century working-class women, most of them the victims of rape, seduction and empty marriage promises. Skip the commentary and analysis and go straight to the heartbreaking quotes: 'He secreted himself in my bed . . . I found him when I went to dress'; 'He took me home in a cab and effected his purpose by violence'; 'He decamped suddenly on hearing of my confinement'; 'He would not pay a farthing unless compelled'.

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