PHD Masterclass: Prof. Jerry White

Tuesday 14 March 2017,  6 – 8pm, Dreyfus Room, 28 Russell Square

In the next HCA doctoral masterclass,  Birkbeck’s Professor Jerry White will be walking us through how he researched his new book, Mansions of Misery: The Marshalsea Debtors’ Prison.

In Mansions of Misery, Jerry White introduces us to the Marshalsea’s unfortunate prisoners – rich and poor, men and women, spongers, fraudsters and innocents. We get to know the trumpeter John Grano who wined and dined with the prison governor and continued to compose music whilst other prisoners were tortured and starved to death. We meet the bare-knuckle fighter known as the Bold Smuggler, who fell on hard times after being beaten by the Chelsea Snob. And then there’s Joshua Reeve Lowe, who saved Queen Victoria from assassination in Hyde Park in 1820, but whose heroism couldn’t save him from debtors’ prison.

The Guardian’s review of Mansions of Misery:


If you plan to attend, please drop an email to


This is one of a series of doctoral masterclasses for Birkbeck HCA students. For the rest of the series, see:



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