Towards the end of 1831, the authorities unearthed a series of crimes at Number 3, Nova Scotia Gardens in East London that appeared to echo the notorious Burke and Hare killings in Edinburgh three years earlier. After a long investigation, three bodysnatchers were put on trial for supplying the anatomy schools of London with suspiciously fresh bodies for dissection.They later became known as The London Burkers, and their story was dubbed 'The Italian Boy' case. The furore which led directly to the passing of controversial legislation which marked the beginning of the end of body snatching in Britain. In The Italian Boy, Sarah Wise not only investigates the case of the London Burkers but also, by making use of an incredibly rich archival store, the lives of ordinary lower-class Londoners. Here is a window on the lives of the poor - a window that is opaque in places, shattered in others but which provides an unprecedented view of low-life London in the 1830s.
Buy Italian Boy book by Sarah Wise from Australia's Online Bookstore, Boomerang Books.
(198mm x 129mm x 22mm)
Publisher: Vintage Publishing
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Author Biography - Sarah Wise
Sarah took an MA in Victorian Studies at Birkbeck College, University of London. Her debut, The Italian Boy: Murder and Grave Robbery in 1830s London, was shortlisted for the 2005 Samuel Johnson Prize and won the Crime Writers' Association Gold Dagger for Non-Fiction, and her next work The Blackest Streets, was shortlisted for the Royal Society of Literature's Ondaatje Prize. Her third book is Inconvenient People: Lunacy, Liberty and the Mad-Doctors in Victorian England. Sarah was a major contributor to Iain Sinclair's compendium London, City of Disappearances. She has spoken on Radio 4's Thinking Allowed, Woman's Hour and the Today programme, and she regularly lectures to societies and at history events. She lives in central London.