I hope you’ve all been enjoying this months book, don’t forget that the meeting is on 29th May 2014 (next Thursday). Please let me know asap if you will not be attending as this helps when i’m baking.
Here are some questions to keep in mind while you’re reading:
- Summerscale delves into the vocabulary of detection, from “coppers” (46) to “clue” (68) to “detect” (157). Which word origins were the most surprising and interesting, and why?
- Which recent murder cases have caused as great a sensation as the murder at Road Hill of 1860? Why might murder prove so riveting in the press and in fiction, both in the Victorian era and today?
- What role did privacy play in the Road Hill case? How did notions of privacy impede or advance the case? How do Victorian ideas of privacy and domesticity compare to today’s concept of the home?
- Discuss the importance of class relations to the Road Hill case. What was the relationship between the Kent family and the villagers of Road? What were the sources of class tension between Whicher and the local police?
- How was the Road Hill murder case a product of its time? What features of the Victorian era were especially prominent in the case? What was the influence of Charles Darwin’s emerging theories?