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Gentleman Jack

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S of Denmark as she resolves to put past heartbreak behind her and find herself a wife This book introduces the real Gentleman Jack featuring unpublished journal extracts decrypted for the first time by series creator Sally Wainwright and writer Anne Cho. DNF 20%

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'There are ways than one of being happy I am living proof of this'Anne Lister was remarkable Fearless charismatic and determined to explore her lesbian sexuality she forged her own path in a society that had no language to define her She was a landowner. As reading the diaries themselves as edited by Helena Whitbread is a bit too intensive for me right now I was happy to find this book It provides background for the tv series and has selected some of the most interesting diary passages I was especially fascinated by how Anne used the diaries as a ways of reasoning with herself I had to laugh uite a couple of times at Anne writing one thing and subseuently doing something that decidely illustrated the opposite I also enjoyed how reading the book immediately offers insight into some of the plot choices made by the series

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An industrialist and a prolific diarist whose output has secured her legacy as one of the most fascinating figures of the 19th century Gentleman Jack The Real Anne Lister follows Anne from her crumbling ancestral home in Yorkshire to the glittering court. Anne Choma’s Gentleman Jack The Real Anne Lister is an excellent companion to the HBO and BBC adaptation Supplementary and expansive there is no hint of any partiality in this fascinating biography that succinctly tells not only of Lister’s liaisons with a lot of women but also her insatiable hunger for education despite women’s almost lack of rights then Her detailed diary entries are not only a time capsule on 1800s lesbianism but an intricate look at mechanics of societyAnne Lister of Shibden Hall who is perhaps most well known as the “modern lesbian” with libertine outlook on gender and sexuality also suffered from flawed beliefs and uestionable intentions Although she was at peace with her religion and sexuality she was conservative in her political interests she’s a Tory Blue in fact and had manipulative selfish tendencies over lovers and the lower class As is the norm with white male businessmen in this era there was no surprise there Her need to climb up over the social ladder was a little off putting though she eventually grew out of this Despite these shortcomings her courage to live her life as herself unapologetic is admirable; her experience of heartbreak and want of a lasting partner one after another palpable her gentlemanly manner uite endearing that it is difficult with her string of lovers not to be charmed and smitten Although her family was refreshingly accepting she didn’t escape the lingering snide and taunt of narrow minded bigots Heteronormativity corrupts and forces itself upon same sex relationships ie rigid ideas on gender roles Branded as an oddity her lack of conformity on femininity with other expectations on gender in tow she made up for her travel enthusiasm and vast knowledge on a wide array of subjects This biography also tells and concludes her love story with Ann Walker who was as commendable and magnificent for her own bravery Their romance is a gut wrenching and gushing tale of communion and affinity A “marriage” hailed as the “first same sex marriage” in the UK this is another fragment of the continuing persistence and presence of the LGBT community throughout history And I uote EM Forster “It comes to this then there always have been people like me and always will be ” Today Shibden Hall stands proudly in Halifax Yorkshire and the church where Anne and Ann took their wedding vows through the holy communion bears a plaue that commemorates the event Gentleman Jack The Real Anne Lister is not a diary anthology It often inserts excerpts from Lister’s diaries which are then discussed at length by Choma; historical context included Side by side with the TV series this is a brilliant addition but as a stand alone I wouldn’t think this will suffice at all Don’t forget to see the TV series because writer Sally Wainwright never disappoints and is a gift that keeps on giving