London Life: a magazine for fetishists



London Life cover 001The front and back covers of London Life, which appeared from 1920 to 1960, should suggest the dominant theme of this magazine. In the three issues from the early 1940s that we found at Jot HQ recently scantily clad young ladies feature prominently on two of the covers, while the third shows a lovely young thing in full pout. Between the covers images of more scantily clad ladies in the form of photos and line drawings jostle for attention with feature articles on such topics as corsets and shoes, paint-on stockings, and ear-rings. There are also serials featuring Tilda, ‘ the world’s most glamorous girl ‘.But most of each issue is dominated by correspondence from alleged ‘ readers ‘ discoursing on every aspect of dress fetishism from a penchant for corsetry , high-heeled shoes and long gloves to the pleasures of transvestism.

Compared with what can be found on the Internet today this material is pretty mild, but in 1932 the magazine was deemed too audacious for the Irish government, who banned it. However, during the war against Hitler ( who is mocked in one issue) a more sensible British government doubtless felt that it provided much-needed glamour for demoralised troops.

All tastes were catered for by the correspondents, including in one instance, a sort of male transvestism in which the correspondent recalls the experience of wearing a corset borrowed from a friend:

‘ He asked me if I would like to be laced, and suggested a comfortable tightness at first, and as it was a beautiful evening, we decided to go for a walk after I finished dressing. We went quite five miles, and I shall never forget how comfortable I felt; no sign of fatigue, and on my return I requested him to lace me in much tighter—and it was quite a thrill seeing what a small waist I could achieve. Needless to add that I have now spent some coupons on a pair of my own, and although I don’t wear them daily, I particularly delight in walking in them, and have become quite a tight-lacing fan.
Yours truly,
“LACED.” Continue reading

Rachel Swete Macnamara

An interesting romantic thriller Cock Angel by Rachel Swete Macnamara published by Hurst and Blackett (London circa 1955) We don't normally do smut at jot101, not out of piety but because there is more than enough elsewhere. However this cover was irresistible and it is hard to believe that the dubiousness of the title was not spotted at the time. The book first appeared in 1928 and was re-issued in the 1950s with this mildly suggestive jacket. Rachel Swete Macnamara seems to have gone in for titles with a slightly  religious reference - her other works include Pagans Limited, Torn Veils, Stolen Fruit, Burnt Dishes, Jealous Gods, Seed of Fire and The Trance...

The plot, summed up on the flyleaf, goes thus:

Charles Revel falls deeply in love with the wife of a celebrated film star, who shortly afterwards meets his death by drowning. After six months Charles meets her in London and, following a swift wooing, marries and takes her to the family house, where she soon feels herself over-powered by inquisitive relations and the memories of her first impetuous, though faithless, lover. How she eventually breaks under the strain, and the ultimate result, form the ending to a very engrossing novel.