Edwardian

Betty May’s “Tiger Woman”

Still engrossed in Betty May’s “Tiger Woman”, I’m fascinated to learn so much more about the extraordinary bohemian culture of the Edwardian era. The 1960s are remembered for the sex, drugs, and rock’n’roll? the 1900s seem to me to have been far more outrageous! “Even then [probably early 1914?] I had been taking about one hundred grains–ten is a fatal dose to an unaccustomed person–of cocaine per day, varied occasionally with injections of morphia … when waking up after an orgy I could hardly open my mouth” (pp.104-5).

The video is of musical comedy actress Billie Carleton, who outraged the world by “wearing a daringly diaphanous outfit” (no need to look up the word–it means “see-through”) and who died from a cocaine overdose at the age of 22.

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