Forward and Courageous with Dr Elaine Murphy, Thursday 14 September, 7.30pm
Captain Charles Johnson in his General History of the Pyrates described how ‘no Body was more forward or courageous’ than Mary Reed and Anne Bonny on the pirate John Rackam’s ship. Indeed, Johnson suggested Rackam was something of a coward and that before his execution Bonny told him ‘if he had fought like a Man, he need not have been hang’d like a Dog’. This talk explores the myths and realities about female pirates from the 16th to 18th centuries, examining their experiences at sea and their depictions in popular culture. As well as well-known pirates, this talk will also look at some of the lesser-known women who came into contact with pirates such as women taken captive at sea.
Dr Elaine Murphy is Associate Professor of Maritime History at the University of Plymouth. She teaches a module on Piracy and Privateering and has published on the history of piracy and the British Civil Wars at Sea. She is currently working on a project about women and the navy in the 17th century.
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