Prof. F.J Lewis
History Today
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DB: Good evening and welcome to History Today.
I can tell you that  no-one is more surprised than myself and Professor F.J. Lewis, when the news came through that we were to be  granted another series of discussion programmes on the television.

However, I can assure all those who may have been uncertain about the decision that tonight's discussion, on the perennial topic of Romanticism and Industrialization, will be a most rigorous investigation into this always provoking issue.

Professor Lewis, I wonder if we may begin by talking about the ways in which this period saw the beginning of social disintegration.
   
RN: Indeed. The collapse of the extended family meant that, for literally
thousands of women, the only way of supporting themselves was to

turn to prostitution. There are several accounts of this but perhaps the

most harrowing is My Life As A Prostitute, a first-person account by a

woman who, being very very ugly and suffering from Scrofula,

could not charge very much for her services and so was compelled,

alas, to perform all sorts of degrading sexual acts with over one h
undred thousand men.
   
DB: Well it sounds like a very important source text this, er, My Life As A Prostitute. I wonder, is there a modern edition of the publication?
   
RN: Yes. It's, er, Weidenfelton and Nicholson. Second Edition, price           twenty-seven pounds and ninety-nine pence. That's, um, My Life As A Prostitute by your mum.
   
DB: I see. See a pond or a lake or a very, very large puddle?
   
RN: Yes.
   
DB: That's your bed, that is. You're on the front cover of Bedwetters Monthly.
   
RN: Well, what this period saw was essentially a pendulum like movement.
A swinging from Romanticism to Materialism and then back again and then violently back once more.
   
DB: Yes.
   
RN: And that's how you drive... all over the shop.
You know men who put fruit up each other's bottoms?
   
DB: Yes.
   
RN: Oh you do?! You know them! They're your friends! You've said it, you can't take it back now.
   
DB: No, er, I didn't mean I *know* them.
   
RN: Well that's what you said. You shouldn't have said it.
   
DB: See a pair of 3-D glasses which you get free with TV Quick? And
they've got like an orangey bit and a green plastic bit on each eye, and

they don't fit properly.
   
RN: Has the green piece come off slightly and it's sort of hanging off?
   
DB: Yes, and there's some writing on the side where someone has tested a biro out.
   
RN: Yes.
   
DB: That's your Ray Bans, that is. That's your cool shades {puts on 3D glasses} Oh, hi girls, Tom Cruise here.
But, Professor Lewis, if we could return to the subject in hand.

I was reading an interesting piece the other day...
   
RN: No you weren't. You can't read, and you can't afford a book.
   
DB: Well, actually it was a piece by yourself. A rather fine piece in the Historical Inquirer. I was very impressed by it.
   
RN: Oh? Were you? Thankyou.
   
DB: I was particularly moved by the section on page 35 about the advancement of Scottish Radicalism. I'd like to read from it if I may.
   
RN: I'd be honoured.
   
DB: {makes nonsensical noises like Donald Duck etc} Your best work I fear.
Well I don't think anyone can be in any doubt that tonight, er, Romanticism and Industrialization have been covered in a most invigorating way. Professor Lewis, thankyou very much.
   
RN: Thankyou.

 

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