Monday 08, October 2012
New book on Manchester's female activists to be released
A NEW book about to be published has
unearthed little known information on the lives and struggles of Manchester’s
unsung radical women.
“Up Then, Brave Women: Manchester’s Radical
Women 1819-1918”, written by local social historian, Michael Herbert, has
brought together the histories of distinguished and lesser heard of local
female social activists.
The book provides a “snapshot” overview of
politically active women from 1819, the year of the infamous Peterloo Massacre
in which four women were killed, to 1918 and the Representation of the People
It is in many ways a compendium of the
stories of campaigning women from the area, something that has not been done to
the same extent before.
Speaking about why he chose to use Peterloo as the book’s starting point, Michael, who has compiled the information over the last few years, said:
“1819 was the first significant example of Mancunian
women coming together en masse to organise in a radically political manner. It
marked the beginning of substantial female organisation in the city which saw
women fighting to obtain equality and human rights.”
Aware of the large amount of attention
devoted to the lives of Manchester’s most famous women, the Pankhursts ,
Michael has attempted to broaden public perspective by considering the vital
contributions of other local women involved in movements such as the Chartists,
Cooperative Societies and trade unionism.
book introduces readers to figures such as the tireless Sarah Reddish and Annie
Marland, mill workers who were present in numerous, critical campaigns in the
19th and early 20th century.
It also provides an alternative view of the
votes for women campaign, considering its origins in the 1860s and the campaign
by working class women which has been sometimes overlooked.
Michael added: “I wanted to give attention
to some of the female activists who really deserve recognition for their work.”
“The book shows that people have faced
difficult situations at all points through history but at the same time have
managed to achieve extraordinary gains. I think the lesson readers may get from
this book is that if you want to achieve something you will have to demand and
fight for change like these women did.”
will be hosting the book’s launch on Saturday 13th October at 6pm
upstairs at the Black Lion Pub on Chapel Street, Salford, as part of the
Manchester Weekender. Details of the event can be found at: http://redflagwalks.wordpress.com/.
The book can be purchased from the People’s History Museum and via post.
Contact Michael via email at firstname.lastname@example.org for further information.
By Chloe Glover
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