Conference Contribution Details
Mandatory Fields
Rachel MagShamhráin
Trinity College Dublin, Dept. of Germanic Studies Research Colloquium
"Department Store Kleptomania"
Trinity College Dublin
Invited Lectures (Workshops)
Optional Fields

This paper looks at a prototypical German example of the kleptomania diagnosis in its heyday around 1900, reading the phenomenon as a means of social control of women in a period of suffragist agitation. It argues that the medicalization of women in early-twentieth century forensic psychiatric treatises, such as this one -- Leopold Laquer’s Der Warenhausdiebstahl -- was in part an attempt to curb female enfranchisement, and a reaction against the social upheavals of modernity, while establishing the credentials of forensic psychiatry, a relatively new branch of medicine.