A week in Copenhagen

I came back from Copenhagen in early September. I’d spent a week in the city, staying near the Lergravsparken metro station in a tiny studio flat which had enough room for potted plants and comfortable chairs and not much else beyond the purely functional. I’ve spent the last month thinking about travel writing, and about […]

About me

I’m Emily, an apprentice journalist, a nearly-done PhD student, a writer and an occasional picture-maker. My thing is the long nineteenth century and Neo-Victorianism in literature, art, and the archives, whether it’s ‘asylums’ or activism, science or the supernatural – and particularly when these intersect with folklore or cabaret or horror. Here are some of my […]

James Henry Pullen: Inmate, Inventor, Genius

On Friday, I finally managed to visit Inmate, Inventor, Genius, the Watts Gallery’s exhibition showcasing the life and work of asylum artist James Henry Pullen (1835-1916). This was a fascinating exhibition which demonstrated the artist’s incredible creative talent and technical skill while sensitively contextualising his practice with his institutionalisation. Pullen created ‘extraordinary designs, gigantic articulated […]

A Review of Clementine Ford’s Fight Like A Girl

Content warning for both Ford’s book and this review: sexual violence, rape culture, eating disorders, and mental health issues. Note: Fight Like A Girl was originally printed in Australia by Allen & Unwin in 2016, and was published by Oneworld Publications for the UK on August 2, and will be published in the US on […]

Laurie Penny’s Bitch Doctrine: a review

Laurie Penny’s writing has always struck a chord with me. I’ve followed her columns since my awkward, confused teenage years, into my slightly less awkward but still very confused adulthood, and my copies of Meat Market and Unspeakable Things are covered in pencil marks: underscorings, exclamation marks, questions. Because of this, a number of the […]

Can You Help Discover the History of Patient Creativity at St James’ Hospital?

[This story was published on November 13 by Star & Crescent. Read the original story at starandcrescent.org.uk/2017/11/13/can-you-help-discover-the-history-of-patient-creativity-at-st-james-hospital.] Local writer and historian Emily Turner was inspired by the recent Edward King exhibition at Portsmouth City Museum and is running her own research project exploring the creativity of patients in mental health institutions. She would like to include […]

Edward King: patient artist

Yesterday, I visited Portsmouth Museum. I grew up in the area and still live nearby, so I’ve spent many an hour meandering through its galleries. After a particularly dreadful mental health dip, my mother (and fellow history/art enthusiast) shepherded me back down to check out the museum’s current temporary exhibition, which focuses on the work […]