Quite how my family got itself stuck in a fundamentalist rut is one of the puzzles I try to excavate in the Huguenot Jo blog. Our mulish opposition to religious conformism and the state arose from our Huguenot roots - and our ancestors’ secret flight from savage persecution at the hands of French Catholics.
The blog is the heart of the Huguenot Jo website. You can sign up to follow it by email (at the bottom of each page) or via social media.
In the blog, I’m exploring what happened to my family within the wider story of the Huguenots and their part in European history and culture.
Protestantism has a particular take on the role of women in society: women's rage and "the outcast woman" are recurrent themes.
The About page outlines the origins of the blog, and lists Huguenot names borne by my forebears.
Frequently Asked Questions tries to answer the most common questions about Huguenots, Strict Baptists and the blog. The Gallery is a great place for inspiration and to browse pictures illustrating Huguenot history.
Sarah Perry’s latest publication, “Essex Girls: For Profane and Opinionated Women Everywhere”, is a tiny little book based on a Harriet Martineau lecture she gave; it’s an entertaining read for any woman who doesn’t like to shut up. Sarah Perry is best known for her...
Bah Humbug is one response to Christmas, exemplified by Dr Seuss’ The Grinch. In 1644 Parliament was peopled with Puritan Grinches, and their declaration cancelling Christmas has now been reproduced on a tea towel. Clearly these were not populists, appealing to the...
“…anchored among the red-brick Queen Anne houses of the weavers.” So John Betjeman described Christ Church, Spitalfields, in The Collins Guide to English Parish Churches. The Grade I listed church was built following an Act of Parliament in 1711, which legislated for...
I have my criticisms of my mother, and in many ways she was an abomination, but she did make sure I learnt to swim, and – more unusually – to ride. My sister and I were horse fanatics. Our riding lessons involved a long, meandering bus ride through the lanes of...