[DWJ] Personal Plumbing was Splatchers and Ransome was branding books was What are you reading?

Elizabeth Bentley ebentleysln at googlemail.com
Fri Nov 6 15:20:57 EST 2009

Just remembered being surprised by the mention of the heroine in  
Zola's Germinal starting menstruation, aged 16 - must be a fairly  
early occurrence in literature - I think it was actually a plot point,  
though it's decades since I read it.

Elizabeth Bentley BA MCLIP
Northbrook C of E School, London SE13 5HZ
mailto:ebentleysln at googlemail.com

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On 6 Nov 2009, at 16:32, Elizabeth Parks wrote:

> One also tends to forget with real cases that actually menstruating
> regularly, once every twenty-eight days or so, is not and has not  
> been as
> common as we often assume.  I (sorry if this is overshare) skip  
> periods when
> I change time zones that are more than five or six hours apart.  Women
> frequently skip periods in times of less food, stress, etc: I'm sure  
> that
> Civil War battles and the like would qualify as stressful. . .  
> though if I
> remember correctly, at least one woman soldier was caught when they  
> found
> menstrual blood on her saddle, though I can't remember exactly who  
> and when
> and where this was, sadly :(  There's a brief article on women in  
> the Civil
> War here
> http://civilwarstudies.org/articles/Vol_1/women-in-the-civil- 
> war.shtm that
> may be talking about who Mark remembers.
> This whole discussion about mentioning toilet facilities in novels  
> reminds
> of Twigliht, actually.  The whole time I was reading the series, I  
> kept
> getting yanked out of it by the frequent mentions of what Bella a)  
> chose to
> wear or b) served her father for dinner.  In most novels, putting in  
> bodily
> functions would be as pointless, so I'm agreeing with Kathleen  
> here.  It's
> on my list with sex in romance novels as something that I can probably
> assume without needing a graphic play by play.
> (The worst sex in romance novels isn't even the graphic stuff,  
> though; it's
> the list of the heroine's past lovers, or the explanation about her  
> first
> lover, or whatever else gets used to explain the part where she's  
> not a
> virgin but isn't a huge ho either.)
> lizzie, who reads jennifer crusie novels and skips the sex scenes (I  
> started
> reading my mom's harlequin romances when I was about six.  The sex  
> stopped
> being interesting when I was about twelve.  though the most sexually
> titallating book I remember from my young childhood was the Old  
> Testament,
> so I guess if we're totally disregarding authorial intent than we  
> should
> consider the Old Testament porn. . ..)
>> However, one tends to forget about real cases.  Women fought in the
>> American Civil War as men, and some of them passed themselves off  
>> as men for
>> quite a long period.  I doubt foot soldiers could conceal a secret  
>> like that
>> for a long duration, but it was no trouble for at least one officer.
>> Unfortunately, I can't now remember her name, or I'd send you all  
>> off to
>> Wikipedia.
>> If you like legends, there is always Pope Joan...
>> Mark A.
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