Naming Jack the Ripper

Jack the Ripper is a case known by all and is the best known serial killer as a result of his numerous killings in Whitechapel, London in 1888. Much fascination lies around Jack the Ripper as he remains to be unidentified. Although I have a keen interest in criminology, the Ripper case has never been one which interested me a great deal. Living in the North East of England I often struggle to find public events discussing crime and psychology etc. but around two years ago at my local library I came across a talk being given by an ex scene of crime officer focussing on Jack the Ripper. I went along as it was, as mentioned, one of few events of it’s kind locally to me expecting to have an evening out which I would come away feeling as though I knew one or two facts about the case and have a brief understanding, as admittedly I had never previously paid to much attention to the case. However the talk was fantastic and I thoroughly enjoyed it and it left me wanting to find out more about Jack the Ripper. Many events are either a great success or leave you feel rather deflated due to the individual holding them and the contemporary twist the speaker put on the event really helped in my opinion. He was engaging and informative and even presented us with pictures from crime scenes he had attended which showed how blood spatter occurs in different ways depending on how the individual was attacked and used pictures as close to some of the Ripper murders as possible to demonstrate.

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So now that my degree is complete and I have greater time to read and research areas of interest, I have begun reading a book specifically about Jack the Ripper. I have never read anything solely about him before and so it is all pretty new to me! The book is written by Russell Edwards and has only just been published this year. Russell Edwards is now linked to the Ripper case and is in the distinctive position of owning a shawl. The shawl in question supposedly belonged to Catherine Eddowes, one of the Ripper’s victims, and is the only piece of physical evidence from one of the crime scenes. Of course I have yet to read the book and so have very little more I can give however once I have finished I will be posting a full review and in the mean time I would be keen for recommendations of books, papers or readings to look at for someone who knows little about Jack the Ripper.

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