Tokens of affection: re-engraved coins, sentiment and the poor, 1740 - 1840
SupervisorsDr Louise Purbrick
This research investigates the feelings of the poor in the eighteenth century by exploring the material culture of the love tokens they exchanged. It examines re-engraved coins to gain insights into the emotional experiences of families faced with economic, social, penal and occupational separation. These keepsakes are defaced and worn coins which have been engraved with messages and images of affection.
With current interest in the study of affection as well as memory, this PhD is relevant to both flourishing disciplines. The investigation asks to what extent these personalised objects can be used to access the sentiment of the poor when autobiographical accounts are rare and whether the study of affection can be employed to add to theoretical explanations of the embodiment of human emotion in artefacts.
The research will be informed by the work of Marcel Mauss, Arthur Gell, Peter King; Peter Linebaugh; John Styles; Marcia Pointon; Amanda Vickery; Elizabeth Hallam and Marius Kwint, amongst others.