How Victorian Britain was Poisoned at Home, Work, and Play
Author: James C. Whorton
Publisher: OUP Oxford
Arsenic is rightly infamous as the poison of choice for Victorian murderers. Yet the great majority of fatalities from arsenic in the nineteenth century came not from intentional poisoning, but from accident. Kept in many homes for the purpose of poisoning rats, the white powder was easily mistaken for sugar or flour and often incorporated into the family dinner. It was also widely present in green dyes, used to tint everything from candles and candies to curtains, wallpaper, and clothing (it was arsenic in old lace that was the danger). Whether at home amidst arsenical curtains and wallpapers, at work manufacturing these products, or at play swirling about the papered, curtained ballroom in arsenical gowns and gloves, no one was beyond the poison's reach. Drawing on the medical, legal, and popular literature of the time, The Arsenic Century paints a vivid picture of its wide-ranging and insidious presence in Victorian daily life, weaving together the history of its emergence as a nearly inescapable household hazard with the sordid story of its frequent employment as a tool of murder and suicide. And ultimately, as the final chapter suggests, arsenic in Victorian Britain was very much the pilot episode for a series of environmental poisoning dramas that grew ever more common during the twentieth century and still has no end in sight.
From insidious murder weapons to blaze-igniting crinolines, clothing has been the cause of death, disease and madness throughout history, by accident and design. Clothing is designed to protect, shield and comfort us, yet lurking amongst seemingly innocuous garments we find hats laced with mercury, frocks laden with arsenic and literally 'drop-dead gorgeous' gowns. Fabulously gory and gruesome, Fashion Victims takes the reader on a fascinating journey through the lethal history of women's, men's and children's dress, in myth and reality. Drawing upon surviving fashion objects and numerous visual and textual sources, encompassing louse-ridden military uniforms, accounts of the fiery deaths of Oscar Wilde's half-sisters and dancer Isadora Duncan's accidental strangulation by entangled scarf; the book explores how garments have tormented those who made and wore them, and harmed animals and the environment in the process. Vividly chronicling evidence from Greek mythology to the present day, Matthews David puts everyday apparel under the microscope and unpicks the dark side of fashion. Fashion Victims is lavishly illustrated with over 125 images and is a remarkable resource for everyone from scholars and students to fashion enthusiasts.
For centuries, arsenic's image as a poison has been inextricably tied to images of foul play. In King of Poisons, John Parascandola examines the surprising history of this deadly element. From Gustave Flaubert to Dorothy Sayers, arsenic has long held a place in the literary realm as an instrument of murder and suicide. It was delightfully used as a source of comedy in the famous play Arsenic and Old Lace. But as Parascandola shows, arsenic has had a number of surprising real-world applications. It was frequently found in such common items as wallpaper, paint, cosmetics, and even candy, and its use in medical treatments was widespread. American ambassador Clare Boothe Luce suffered from exposure to arsenical paint in her study, and Napoleon's death has long been speculated to be the result of accidental or intentional poisoning. But arsenic poisoning is still a public menace. In the neighborhood surrounding American University in Washington, D.C., the army has undertaken a massive cleanup of artillery shells and bottles containing chemical warfare agents such as arsenical lewisite after a number of workmen and residents became ill. Arsenic contamination of the water supply in Bangladesh and in West Bengal, India, is a major public health problem today as well. From murder to crime fiction, from industrial toxin to chemical warfare, arsenic remains a powerful force in modern life.
Deadly Deeds, Perilous Professions, and Murderous Medicines
Author: Sarah Albee
Publisher: Crown Books for Young Readers
Category: Juvenile Nonfiction
Science geeks and armchair detectives will soak up this non-lethal, humorous account of the role poisons have played in human history. Perfect for STEM enthusiasts! For centuries, people have been poisoning one another—changing personal lives and the course of empires alike. From spurned spouses and rivals, to condemned prisoners like Socrates, to endangered emperors like Alexander the Great, to modern-day leaders like Joseph Stalin and Yasser Arafat, poison has played a starring role in the demise of countless individuals. And those are just the deliberate poisonings. Medical mishaps, greedy “snake oil” salesmen and food contaminants, poisonous Prohibition, and industrial toxins also impacted millions. Part history, part chemistry, part whodunit, Poison: Deadly Deeds, Perilous Professions, and Murderous Medicines traces the role poisons have played in history from antiquity to the present and shines a ghoulish light on the deadly intersection of human nature . . . and Mother Nature.
In the 1950s, the residents of the southwestern coastal areas of Taiwan suffered greatly from Blackfoot disease (BFD) due to the consumption of arsenic-contaminated groundwater. Groundwater with high levels of arsenic in southwestern and northeastern Taiwan received much attention. After arsenic-safe tap water was utilized for drinking instead of groundwater in the 1970s, BFD cases decreased greatly. After 1990, no new BFD cases were reported, and as a consequence, BFD problems disregarded. However, arsenic is still present in the groundwater. This book will improve the knowledge and understanding of the occurrence and genesis of arsenic-rich groundwaters in Taiwan. It deals with constraints on the mobility of arsenic in groundwater, its uptake from soil and water by plants, arsenic-propagation through the food chain, human health impacts, and arsenic-removal technologies. Taiwan case experiences are described in this book and can be applied worldwide. This book is a state-of-the-art overview of research on arsenic in Taiwan and is designed to: create interest in regions within Taiwan that are affected by the presence of arseniferous aquifers; draw attention from the international scientific community; increase awareness among researchers, administrators, policy makers, and company executives; improve the international cooperation on arsenic problems worldwide.
If a defendant is on trial for a crime such as burglary, to what extent should the fact that he has a previous conviction for burglary feature in his trial? Should the prosecution be allowed to tell the jury about the previous conviction as evidence that the defendant is more likely to have committed burglary? Should the judge give the defendant a longer sentence because he has a previous conviction? These are the fundamental questions examined in Character in the Criminal Trial. Including an in-depth analysis of the character evidence provisions of the Criminal Justice Act 2003, this book assesses the arguments for and against using character evidence to prove a defendant's guilt. It explores the sentencing provisions in the same Act, as well as the general use of criminal record and other character evidence to aggravate and mitigate sentence. Issues examined in the course of the book include: psychological and philosophical debates about the stability of character; criminological research on recidivism and the nature of criminal careers; ethical debates about the use of prior behaviour to prove current or future offending; the process of reasoning underlying the use of bad character evidence; whether bad character evidence is prejudicial; and the use of risk assessment instruments to classify offenders as dangerous. By combining insights from law, psychology, criminology, and philosophy, Redmayne reassesses the use of character in the criminal trial and reflects on the significance of the law's increasing emphasis on character.
You'd never believe it to look at me now, but once upon a time I killed a man' Historian Daniel Kind is finding winter in the Lake District tough, especially as his relationship with Miranda seems to be on the rocks. Far from the bright lights of London, Miranda feels increasingly isolated, and Daniel fears that she will just up and leave. She wouldn't be the first. Years ago, Emma Bestwick left her cottage and never came back, her disappearance never resolved, much to the chagrin of DCI Hannah Scarlett, head of the local Cold Case Review Team. But recently there are been calls to the local newspaper dropping hints about Emma's death. With the case reopened, Hannah and Daniel are thrown together again, and soon discover that someone is desperate to preserve the secrets of the past, whatever the cost.
Proceedings of the 5th International Congress on Arsenic in the Environment, May 11-16, 2014, Buenos Aires, Argentina
Author: Marta I. Litter
Publisher: CRC Press
The Congress "Arsenic in the Environment" offers an international, multi- and interdisciplinary discussion platform for research aimed towards a holistic solution to the problem posed by the environmental toxin arsenic, with considerable societal impact. The congress has focused on cutting edge and breakthrough research in physical, chemical, toxicological, medical, agricultural and other specific issues on arsenic across a broader environmental realm. The Congress “Arsenic in the Environment” was first organized in Mexico City (As2006) followed by As2008 in Valencia, Spain, As2010 in Tainan, Taiwan and As2012 in Cairns, Australia. The 5th International Congress As2014 was held May 11-16, 2014 in Buenos Aires, Argentina and entitled One Century of the Discovery of Arsenicosis in Latin America (1914-2014). The session topics comprised: Theme 1: Arsenic in environmental matrices (air, water and soil) Theme 2: Arsenic in food Theme 3: Arsenic and health Theme 4: Removal technologies Theme 5: Mitigation management and policy Hosting this Congress in Argentina was especially relevant because 2014, marks 100 years since the discovery of the disease Hidroarsenicismo Crónico Regional Endémico (HACRE) or arsenicosis by Dr. Goyenechea and Dr. Ayerza in the city of Bell Ville, Province of Córdoba, Argentina. Dr. Ayerza was the first person to relate skin disorders to the consumption of groundwater with high concentrations of arsenic. It is estimated that more than 14 million people in Latin America are at risk, of whom nearly 4 million are exposed to drinking water with high arsenic concentration in Argentina, and further in Chile, El Salvador, Mexico, Nicaragua and Peru. A vast area of the Chaco-Pampean Plain in Argentina, mostly in the semi-arid regions, is affected not only by arsenic exposure from drinking water but also through other exposure pathways, e.g. through food and other dietary intake. The Congress has gathered professionals involved in different segments of interdisciplinary research in an open forum, and strengthens relations between academia, industry, research laboratories, government agencies and the private sector to share an optimal atmosphere for exchange of knowledge, discoveries and discussions about the problem of arsenic in the environment.