Pearl Jephcott: Reflections, Resurgence and Replications
journal contributionposted on 04.05.2018, 10:11 by John D. Goodwin, Henrietta O'Connor
This special issue of the Women’s History Review is dedicated to the work of Pearl Jephcott (1900-1980) and draws upon papers presented at a conference held at the University of Leicester in July 2015: Gender, Youth, Community, Methodology and More: A Symposium Celebrating the Life and Work of Pearl Jephcott. Pearl was a social researcher whose work spanned much of the twentieth-century and her work and publications can be categorised as being focused on the themes of social justice, inequality, ethnicity, gender, work, leisure time, the ‘everyday’ experience, children and young people, housing, education, crime and health – both physical and mental. Pearl was also concerned with the lives of girls and women in a period when little attention was paid to their experience of everyday life and, as Oakley suggests below, her approach was ‘trailblazing’. Pearl forged a pathway for later researchers not only in her focus on women but also in her innovative research methods, her desire to foreground the voice of the researched and her shift away from the large-scale quantitative surveys of the period to focus on individual experiences of everyday life.