Suffrajitsu & Playing the Ghost | Ballarat Heritage Festival
Two historical shows with a short interval.
Suffrajitsu – See a suffragette rally and a Victorian Women’s self defence display of suffrajitsu, the noble art of self defence for women.
Playing the Ghost – Explore Ballarat’s rich heritage of ghostly rituals, beliefs and hoaxes.
See a suffragette rally and a Victorian Women’s self defence display of suffrajitsu, the noble art of self defense for women.
In the late 19th century there was a craze for the Japanese martial art of Jiu Jitsu among women campaigning for suffrage, This was both for self defense from ruffians when door knocking, protesting and gaining signatures and also as part of a campaign for women’s safety at night. Led by Edith Garrud this movement argued that as women were exposed to violence and intimidation in their pursuit of suffrage they should campaign to break free of reliance on men for their protection.
Playing the Ghost
Come with us to explore Ballarat’s rich heritage of ghostly rituals, beliefs and hoaxes through the winding alleys of Camp and Lydiard st this Heritage weekend. Guisers who created spectres to scare away ill fortune and evil spirits, the wassailing rituals to protect against misfortune and the hoaxers who challenged the authority of the scientific anti-superstitious crusade by ‘playing the ghost’ in elaborate hoaxes. Also see the steps taken by 19th century police, clergy and vigilantes to stamp out what was known as the “ghost nuisance”.
Featuring Fauvel the Australian Mari Lwyd, a traditional spectral ‘Grey Mare’, come on a guided theatrical tour of activations and Victorian artworks through Camp and Lydiard street to revisit Ballarat’s subversive and spectral past.
‘But outside the obscure regions tenanted by this creed, there are distinct signs that ghosts, which we thought were laughed out of existence by the robust common sense of the eighteenth century, are creeping back into the world, revisiting again the glimpses of the moon, in these rather sickly times of the moribund nineteenth century.’
– The Argus 1884