Michelle Allen

Michelle Allen is an assistant professor of English at the U. S. Naval Academy. She has published an edition of Lorna Doone by R. D. Blackmore.

Listed in: Medical Humanities · British History - Victorian Era · Victorian Studies

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Cleansing the City · Sanitary Geographies in Victorian London
By Michelle Allen

Cleansing the City: Sanitary Geographies in Victorian London explores not only the challenges faced by reformers as they strove to clean up an increasingly filthy city but the resistance to their efforts. Beginning in the 1830s, reform-minded citizens, under the banner of sanitary improvement, plunged into London’s dark and dirty spaces and returned with the material they needed to promote public health legislation and magnificent projects of sanitary engineering.

“Professor Allen is to be congratulated on rescuing those who had a pessimistic view of reform, or who opposed it in principle, from obscurity or the facile dismissal of scholars. She investigates what is clearly a powerful and recurring undercurrent in Victorian thought and elevates it into the mainstream.”

Anthony Wohl, author of Endangered Lives: Public Health in Victorian Britain