The Fox and the Flies: The Criminal Empire of the Whitechapel Murderer. Charles Van Onselen

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9780099502821: The Fox and the Flies: The Criminal Empire of the Whitechapel Murderer. Charles Van Onselen

At the end of the nineteenth century European pimps and 'white slavers' established a hugely successful global market for commercial sex and for three turbulent decades before the First World War, Joseph Silver was central to this hidden world of betrayal, intrigue, lust and sexual slavery. Burglar, gun-runner and trafficker in women on four continents, Silver was a disturbed adolescent, youthful predator and adult misogynist whose notoriety was captured in the most confidential correspondence of a dozen countries in the western world. But what those in charge of law-enforcement agencies kept to themselves was how their officers had attempted to use Silver as an informer to infiltrate syndicates, only to have him outwit them as he moved in the dangerous space between police and prostitutes.In this brilliant study, Charles van Onselen situates the private life of one man amidst the demi-monde of the Atlantic world and casts a brilliant light on the most infamous serial killer of all time - Jack the Ripper.

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About the Author:

Charles van Onselen is an acclaimed biographer who has been honoured with visiting fellowships at Cambridge, Oxford and Yale. A graduate of Rhodes University, Grahamstown, and St. Antony's College, Oxford, his earlier works on the social history of southern Africa won him, amongst others, the American African Studies Association's Herskovits Prize, the Institute of Commonwealth Studies' Trevor Reese Memorial Prize and the Sunday Times Alan Paton Award for non-fiction. He has published extensively in leading historical journals in America, England and France. A Fellow of the Royal Society (S.A.) he has recently been a visiting fellow at Magdalen College, Oxford, and the recipient of an honorary doctorate in literature from Rhodes University. He is currently Research Professor in the Faculty of Humanities, at the University of Pretoria in South Africa.

Review:

"The Fox and the Flies is a triumphant achievement" -- Judith Flanders Sunday Times "A fascinating account of the life of a master criminal" Glasgow Herald "A remarkable feat of reclamation... Silver remains shadowy, but readers who would like a Cook's tour of crime in the world's capitals at the turn of the last century could not do better than this book" Daily Mail "A heroic feat of archival research and a major addition to our understanding of the global sex trade" Scotland on Sunday "A triumph of research and persistence" Sunday Telegraph

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Charles Van Ouselen
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