Category Archives: Uncategorized

The Darwins’ Christmas Fayre

Those of us who are planning a ‘double dip recession Christmas’ might find frugal inspiration in Emma Darwin’s traditional Victorian fayre. Over the course of her family life Emma Darwin noted down around forty recipes in her personal cookery notebook which … Continue reading

Darwin on Social Networking

Charles Darwin’s private letters suggest that he was not keen on socialising.  Dedicated scientist that he was, Darwin’s preference was for “society – and little of it”. Indeed, one of Darwin’s concerns about getting married was that it would entail taking a … Continue reading

Keeping it in the Family

As suggested in an earlier blog post, Darwin was something of a reluctant bride groom. His chief concern about getting married and having children centred on the loss of freedom it would entail and, of course, the impact that this … Continue reading

Dawkins, Darwin and friends

In an article and book review published in The Guardian in 2003, Richard Dawkins excitedly reported that “an obscure letter in a library” suggested that Charles Darwin was the forefather not only of the theory of evolution but also of modern genetics. The … Continue reading

Talking to Teachers

Armed with homemade cakes and a dictaphone, the project has been heading out to meet with secondary school teachers to discuss opportunities for making use of Darwin’s correspondence in the classroom. This first stage of an ongoing consultation process has already generated … Continue reading

The Reluctant Bride Groom?

In April 1838, on the back of a letter he’d received earlier in the month, Charles Darwin scribbled down the pros and cons of becoming a married man . As an ambitious young Naturalist who had travelled the world on The Beagle … Continue reading

Female Censorship?

Editors. All good writers need them, and Darwin was no exception. Although many members of the Darwin family helped refine his manuscripts, it was his daughter Henrietta on whom Darwin arguably relied the most, particularly during the 1860s when he edited the Descent … Continue reading

The Origin of Sex

Sex is a seemingly inescapable reality of the biological world. Surveying the animal and plant kingdoms, at least, seems to reveal a world distributed into male and female. But the ultimate cause of sexual difference was a mystery even to … Continue reading

Science – no job for a lady!

Darwin’s female correspondents give us a glimpse of just how many Victorian women were involved in scientific projects. They may have seen themselves as enthusiastic amateurs but the letters show that they carried out valuable observations and experiments in their own … Continue reading

The Darwin and gender project goes transatlantic!

Our research into Mary Treat has been given a boost in the form of associate professor of nineteenth-century science and Mary Treat expert Tina Gianquitto of the Colorado School of Mines who has generously offered us her help.  In collaboration with both our Cambridge and … Continue reading