Duplisea to discuss legendary “Queen of the Desert” Gertrude Bell
Genna Duplisea, Salve Regina’s archivist and special collections librarian, will discuss “Gender and Empire: Gertrude Bell in the Middle East” at 4 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 20 in the McKillop Library, Room 109.
Known as the “Queen of the Desert,” Gertrude Bell was an archaeologist, explorer, spy and imperial administrator considered a trailblazer for women’s involvement in discovery in the 20th century. Underneath her remarkable achievements, however, was a system of cultural interaction and knowledge production that served the interests of the British Empire.
Rather than frame the upper-class and anti-suffragist Bell as a gender warrior or a radical, Duplisea will examine Bell’s career as a woman imperialist. Duplisea presented her abstract, “Writing in the Masculine: Gertrude Lowthian Bell, Gender and Empire” at the Society for the History of Discoveries annual meeting earlier this month.
Duplisea is a recent graduate of the Simmons College dual master’s program in archives management and history, where her research focused on cross-cultural encounters, gender and the relationship between knowledge production and power.