July 23rd, 2005

Magdalen Asylums in England?

All the online research I've been doing on Magdalen Asylums state that they existed all over the world, but all the information I've found is on those in Ireland, and a little on one in Australia. I'm looking specifically for information about Magdalen Asylums (or, failing that, similar institutions) in England from the late 20s to mid 30s. So far my Google-fu is failing me. Anyone have any information or leads?

Curse words/Disabled driving.

The first is an off the cuff question. I Googled it, but all I got was sites about how cursing is bad bad bad and children should never ever ever curse. About what age does the average school child start cursing among his peers? I'm looking more for ancedoctal evidence than statistical. I knew I picked up some of the milder ones in 4th grade, but stopped for a while and then picked it back up with fiercity in 8th grade. That's somewhat atypical.

Secondly, if a wheelchair bound person was driving a car/van, how would they get their chair in and out of the car? I know what the hand controls somewhat look like but not how they function or much else, especially since I can't drive.

Thanks in advance.

Masorti (Conservative) Jewish education in UK

I am trying to find out if religious education through Masorti (Conservative) synagogues is the same in the UK as it is in the US. In the US, there typically is a "Hebrew School" associated with the synagogue, and students attend two or three days a week, after their normal (secular) school day and in some places on Sunday. Students can start as young as five, but many start at eight and continue on through their Bar/Bat Mitzvah year. They study religion, history, culture, Hebrew, customs, prayers, etc, and typically do some Bar/Bat Mitzvah prep as that year rolls around. Classes are set up very similar to a secular school, and students receive grades and report cards. Students go to the Hebrew School at the synagogue where the family are members, and parents pay tuition for each child to attend.

If you attended Hebrew School, or some kind of religious Jewish education in the UK, please let me know if it was similar or different - and if it was different, in what ways. I looked at a whole bunch of UK Masorti synagogue websites, and couldn't find any references to their educational programs.

Thanks in advance!

early 20th century music

Popular music of the day is playing a key role in the novel I'm working on. If anyone is an old music buff, I'm in need of recommendations for (primarily English-language, but also French) popular music released in the US (and/or Europe) from 1930 to 1941. It's important that the release date be *no later* than 1941.

I know this falls in the heart of the big band era, and there's an enormous number of orchestral works out there, but what I really need are *songs* (ie. that have words), rather than instrumental pieces. I've got a very small selection of Billie Holiday, Ella Fitzgerald, Frank Sinatra, and Louis Armstrong, but I would welcome more. Also, if anyone has any selections/recommendations popular in pre-war Europe, that would be lovely.

Also, I know this is a long shot, but if anyone has any traditional Moroccan/Berber/French North African music appropriate to the time period, I would love you forever if you could either share files or give me some names and titles to go search for.

Thanks!!