Sylvia Pankhurst: Natural Born Rebel

Sylvia Pankhurst: Natural Born Rebel

by Rachel Holmes


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On the 100th anniversary of the 19th Amendment, the definitive biography of suffragette Sylvia Pankhurst-political rebel, human rights champion, and radical feminist ahead of her time.

Sylvia Pankhurst fought militantly for a woman's right to vote, inspiring movements around the globe. But the vote was just the beginning. A talented artist, a free-spirit, a visionary, Sylvia was seen as “wild,” even by the standards of her activist mother and sister. She became a radical feminist, committing herself to the fight for reproductive rights, equal pay, access to welfare and education, and freedom of sexual expression. She converted her experiences of torture, imprisonment, and violence into a lifelong quest to champion human rights.

Encompassing both World Wars and lasting through the Anti-Apartheid Movement, Pankhurst's political life was international in scope; it included Irish independence, pacifism, the rights of refugees, and the fight against racism in Europe, the Indian subcontinent, and colonial Africa. Her United States lecture tours made headlines and connected her with both American feminists and the NAACP. She spent her life in dialogue, dispute, and resolution with Winston Churchill, Vladimir Lenin, Jomo Kenyatta, Haile Selassie, Harriot Stanton Blatch, and W.E.B. DuBois. And she wrote about it all, prolifically.

In this enthralling biography, acclaimed author Rachel Holmes interweaves Pankhurst's rebellious political and private lives to show how her astonishing achievements continue to resonate today.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781408880418
Publisher: Bloomsbury USA
Publication date: 12/15/2020
Pages: 976
Sales rank: 184,706
Product dimensions: 6.20(w) x 9.30(h) x 2.30(d)

About the Author

Rachel Holmes is the author of Eleanor Marx: A Life, The Secret Life of Dr. James Barry and African Queen: The Real Life of the Hottentot Venus. She is co-editor of Fifty Shades of Feminism and I Call Myself A Feminist. She lives in London.

Table of Contents

Preface xii

Part 1 How To Make A Feminist 1882-1898 1

1 Authority 3

2 Red Doctor 21

3 The Home News & Universal Mirror 49

4 Family Party 69

5 That Scarlet Woman 97

Part 2 Decade Of Dilemma 1898-1908 115

6 Not Things Seen, Always the Things Imagined 117

7 Pankhurst Hall 135

8 Queer Hardie 163

9 The Labour Party - Our Party … a Reality at Last! 181

10 Strange Tangle 205

Part 3 Rage Of Militancy 1908-1914 229

11 The Art of Struggle 231

12 Insurgence of Women 253

13 O you daughters of the West! 283

14 Bridge, Balls, Dinners 301

15 American Letters 317

16 Sex War 339

17 Not as Suffragettes, But as Sisters 351

18 Cat and Mouse 381

19 Sylvia's Army 407

Part 4 In The Red Twilight 1914-1924 427

20 Peacework 429

21 The Dogs of War 447

22 Mothers' Arms 461

23 Welcome to the Soviets 485

24 Anti-Parliamentarianism 509

25 Sylvia's Communist Odyssey 527

26 Comrade Pankhurst 545

27 Discontent on the Lower Deck 565

28 Left Childishness? 589

Part 5 Modern Times 1924-1945 605

29 The Red Cottage Tea Room 607

30 Free Love 627

31 Fascism as It Is 657

32 The National Anti-Fascist Weekly 673

33 War in Woodford 703

Part 6 African Consciousness 1945-1960 731

34 Suffragette & Son 733

35 The Village 749

36 Patriot 767

37 Look for Me in a Whirlwind 779

38 Ethiopia Observer 799

39 Iron Lion Zion 815

Afterword: When I am Gone 837

Abbreviations 842

Notes 843

Select Bibliography 907

Index 917

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