Shadows of the Workhouse is a book by British author Jennifer Worth ( ). It formed the basis for the second series of the television drama Call the. The sequel to Jennifer Worth’s New York Times bestselling memoir and the basis for the PBS series Call the MidwifeWhen twenty-two-year-old Jennifer Worth, fr. Buy Shadows Of The Workhouse: The Drama Of Life In Postwar London by Jennifer Worth (ISBN: ) from Amazon’s Book Store. Everyday low .

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The kind of poverty where ‘the workhouse’ became a reality or at least an ever-present threat. View all 18 comments.

And Sister Monica Joan, the eccentric ninety-year-old nun, is accused of shoplifting some small items from the local market. One of the most depressing and disheartening aspects of the stories was realizing the impact it had on the residents of these communities when the workhouses were repurposed as hospitals, asylums, and nursing homes.

The majority of these stories have also been played out on the show. Looking for beautiful books? Jennifer Worth worked as a midwife and nurse with an order of nuns in the s.

He had such a hard life filled with so much tragedy, he was all alone and had no friends or family left. Interesting Radio interview with the author http: There were some entertaining stories, such as the time Sister Monica Joan was prosecuted for shoplifting, or when an anxious, mousy young woman named Jane fell in love jenniefr a nice reverend. Wkrkhouse Britain’s workhouses were officially abolished inmany did not close their doors until much later.

And Sister Monica Joan, the eccentric ninety-year-old nun, is accused of shoplifting some small items from the local market. And the rent got jenniffr, and somehow they got fed. Review quote Be warned, it’s a real tear-jerker – but it also makes you very grateful for the life we have today. You are commenting using your Twitter account. She is writing the life stories of people whom she met 40 plus years ago. Her books have all been bestsellers.

Nov 29, Rachel rated it it was amazing Shelves: And as another reviewer pointed out, this one just didn’t feel as workhluse I thoroughly enjoyed “Call the Midwife” and started this follow up to it with great expectations.


Shadows of the Workhouse by Jennifer Worth

Men were old at forty. All of the workhouse stories in this book were horrible: She describes what happened to local housing before and after WWII saturation bombing the thd in the country of the Docklands, then goes on to say s housing redevelopment actually was harder on the local people.

I loved the cockney witness and the confused judge, their exchange was hilarious. Worth’s wry sense of humor and sassy quips don’t come through in the Jenny Lee character on screen, but they simply make this memoir. I loved the use of humor to lighten the tone of otherwise depressing stories, the chatter of the housewives and wordplay of street peddlers, the banter of the young nurses and the grace of the nuns was charming.

Around the Year i It’s hard to believe that these places existed. Even though the “work houses” were officially abolished inthey remained in actual practice long after that time, and they functioned under different names.

Worth relates a number of heartbreaking stories of people she met who had been housed in these workhouses; and it was clear that if you had the misfortune of entering these institutions as a child, you would come out of the experience forever changed and sometimes irreparably broken. I think we are still dealing with the dislocation of lifestyle and vocation that began in the late s when factories, assembly line work, mining, etc.

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Worth tells about Jane was particularly crushing for me. Learn how your comment data is processed. I did notice however that the audiobook version differs from the printed one, for example the story of an old Boer War veteran, view spoiler [in the audio version one of the twin sons is court martialed and executed, while in the printed version one twin dies and the other is missing presumed dead.

Jenny was wonderful to visit him and strike up a friendship, but even that at the end wasn’t enough when he was forced to move from his home to live in a miserable old people institution. Of course memoirs are always going to be subjective, but it made me question the truthfulness of what I was reading- how much of it was truth and how much was her filling in the blanks with how she imagined it could have gone?


I am glad that I had the audio version too, because some of the language would have been impossible for me to comprehend. This is a good passage from the epilogue: Jane had grown up in the workhouse.

Shadows of the Workhouse

But the story of Frank, Peggy and Jane was truly heartbreaking. The horror of extreme cruelty to children, together with the long-term emotional damage sustained, receives neither dumbing-down nor brushing over. There were also good stories about British army life in the early s. Spoilers This wasn’t quite good as Call the Midwife … I still really liked it but it was missing some of the charm and honesty of the first book.

Once again, I’m astounded that this is a time within living memory and not some distant century; my mother would have been a young girl then. I suppose the intentions in developing the workhouses could have been good ones; but as with many ideas which are based on good intentions, the workhouses turned out to be a horrible, dehumanizing experience for those who were corralled inside of them… mothers, fathers and children… all housed separately so they could not even offer each other the smallest comfort.

Shadows Of The Workhouse : Jennifer Worth :

Lee was hired as a staff nurse at the London Hospital in Whitechapel in the early s. I am now looking forward to reading worihouse last in Jennifer Worth’s trilogy “Farewell to the East End” to complete the set.

Hunger and hardship were expected. It was also a time of growing awareness of the divide between the rich and the poor, and of a social conscience. What more do you want? I expected more of the same from Volume 2 as I eagerly started reading.

He wanted to break the spirit of this bright, intelligent and lively girl whose only crime was wanting a father and a family who would love her.