Emmeline Pankhurst Freedom Or Death
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Emmeline Pankhurst Hartford Speech November 1913 - Suffragettes - 4 Minute History
And, therefore, indifference is always the friend of the enemy, for it benefits the aggressor — never his victim, whose pain is magnified when he or she feels forgotten. The political prisoner in his cell, the hungry children, the homeless refugees — not to respond to their plight, not to relieve their solitude by offering them a spark of hope is to exile them from human memory. And in denying their humanity, we betray our own. These are just a small selection of powerful speeches, which speeches would you put in your top ten?
The new organization held weekly meetings at Pankhurst's home and membership grew steadily. The group adopted white, green, and purple as its official colors, symbolizing purity, hope, and dignity. Dubbed by the press "suffragettes" meant as an insulting play on the word "suffragists" , the women proudly embraced the term and called their organization's newspaper Suffragette. The following spring, Pankhurst attended the Labor Party's conference, bringing with her a copy of the women's suffrage bill written years earlier by her late husband.
She was assured by the Labor Party that her bill would be up for discussion during its May session. When that long-anticipated day came, Pankhurst and other members of the WSPU crowded the House of Commons , expecting that their bill would come up for debate. To their great disappointment, members of Parliament MPs staged a "talk out," during which they intentionally prolonged their discussion on other topics, leaving no time for the women's suffrage bill. The group of angry women formed a protest outside, condemning the Tory government for its refusal to address the issue of women's voting rights. In —a general election year—the women of WSPU found ample opportunities to make themselves heard.
During a Liberal Party rally held in Manchester on October 13, , Christabel Pankhurst and Annie Kenny repeatedly posed the question to speakers: "Will the liberal government give votes to women? This created an uproar, leading to the pair being forced outside, where they held a protest. Both were arrested; refusing to pay their fines, they were sent to jail for a week. These were the first of what would amount to nearly 1, arrests of suffragists in the coming years. This highly publicized incident brought more attention to the cause of women's suffrage than any previous event; it also brought a surge of new members.
Emboldened by its growing numbers and infuriated by the government's refusal to address the issue of women's voting rights, the WSPU developed a new tactic—heckling politicians during speeches. The days of the early suffrage societies—polite, ladylike letter-writing groups—had given way to a new kind of activism. Nearly women took part in the rally and in the ensuing march to the House of Commons, where small groups of women were allowed in to speak to their MPs after initially being locked out. Not a single member of Parliament would agree to work for women's suffrage, but Pankhurst considered the event a success. An unprecedented number of women had come together to stand for their beliefs and had shown that they would fight for the right to vote.
Pankhurst, shy as a child, evolved into a powerful and compelling public speaker. She toured the country, giving speeches at rallies and demonstrations, while Christabel became the political organizer for the WSPU, moving its headquarters to London. Later that year, Pankhurst went to the United States on a speaking tour, in need of money for medical treatment for her son Harry, who had contracted polio. Unfortunately, he died soon after her return. Over the next seven years, Pankhurst and other suffragettes were repeatedly arrested as the WSPU employed ever more militant tactics.
On March 4, , hundreds of women, including Pankhurst who broke a window at the prime minister's residence , participated in a rock-throwing, window-smashing campaign throughout commercial districts in London. Pankhurst was sentenced to nine months in prison for her part in the incident. In protest of their imprisonment, she and fellow detainees embarked upon a hunger strike. Many of the women, including Pankhurst, were held down and force-fed through rubber tubes passed through their noses into their stomachs.
Prison officials were widely condemned when reports of the feedings were made public. Weakened by the ordeal, Pankhurst was released after spending a few months in abysmal prison conditions. In response to the hunger strikes, Parliament passed what came to be known as the "Cat and Mouse Act" officially called the Temporary Discharge for Ill-Health Act , which allowed women to be released so that they could regain their health, only to be re-incarcerated once they had recuperated, with no credit for time served.
The WSPU stepped up its extreme tactics, including the use of arson and bombs. In , one member of the Union, Emily Davidson, attracted publicity by throwing herself in front of the king's horse in the middle of the Epsom Derby race. Gravely injured, she died days later. The more conservative members of the Union became alarmed by such developments, creating divisions within the organization and leading to the departure of several prominent members. Eventually, even Pankhurst's daughter Sylvia became disenchanted with her mother's leadership and the two became estranged. Pankhurst believed it was her patriotic duty to assist in the war effort and ordered that a truce be declared between the WSPU and the government.
In return, all suffragette prisoners were released. As Pankhurst's eldest daughter Christabel took leadership of the WSPU, antagonism between the group and the government grew. Eventually the group adopted arson as a tactic , and more moderate organisations spoke out against the Pankhurst family. Sylvia became a socialist. With the advent of the First World War , Emmeline and Christabel called an immediate halt to the militant terrorism in support of the British government 's stand against the "German Peril".
Emmeline and Christabel urged women to aid industrial production and encouraged young men to fight, becoming prominent figures in the white feather movement. This discrepancy was intended to ensure that men did not become minority voters as a consequence of the huge number of deaths suffered during the First World War. She transformed the WSPU machinery into the Women's Party , which was dedicated to promoting women's equality in public life. In her later years, she became concerned with what she perceived as the menace posed by Bolshevism and joined the Conservative Party.
She was selected as the Conservative candidate for Whitechapel and St Georges in She was commemorated two years later with a statue in Victoria Tower Gardens , next to the Houses of Parliament. Emmeline Goulden was born on Sloan Street in the Moss Side district of Manchester on 15 July , at school her teachers called her Emily, a name she preferred to be called. Most biographies, including those written by her daughters, repeat this claim. Feeling a kinship with the female revolutionaries who stormed the Bastille , she said in "I have always thought that the fact that I was born on that day had some kind of influence over my life. Robert's mother, a fustian cutter, worked with the Anti-Corn Law League , and his father was press-ganged into the Royal Navy and present at the Peterloo massacre , when cavalry charged and broke up a crowd demanding parliamentary reform.
The Gouldens' first son died at the age of three, but they had 10 other children; Emmeline was the eldest of five daughters. Soon after her birth, the family moved to Seedley , where her father had co-founded a small business. He was also active in local politics, serving for several years on the Salford town council. He was an enthusiastic supporter of dramatic organisations including the Manchester Athenaeum and the Dramatic Reading Society. He owned a theatre in Salford for several years, where he played the leads in several Shakespeare plays.
Goulden absorbed an appreciation of drama and theatrics from her father, which she used later in social activism. As part of the movement to end U. Sophia used the novel Uncle Tom's Cabin , written by Beecher's sister Harriet Beecher Stowe , as a regular source of bedtime stories for her sons and daughters. In her autobiography My Own Story , Goulden recalls visiting a bazaar at a young age to collect money for newly freed slaves in the U. Emmeline began to read books when she was very young, with one source claiming that she was reading as early as the age of three. Their parents believed that the girls needed most to learn the art of "making home attractive" and other skills desired by potential husbands. Feigning sleep one evening as her father came into her bedroom, Goulden heard him pause and say to himself, "What a pity she wasn't born a lad.
It was through her parents' interest in women's suffrage that Goulden was first introduced to the subject. After learning that Becker would be speaking, she insisted on attending. Goulden was enthralled by Becker's address and later wrote, "I left the meeting a conscious and confirmed suffragist. The school provided its female pupils with classes in chemistry and bookkeeping, in addition to traditionally feminine arts such as embroidery. The girls shared tales of their parents' political exploits and remained good friends for years. When Robert refused to provide a dowry for his daughter, the man withdrew his offer of marriage and Goulden returned, miserable, to Manchester.
In the autumn of , at the age of 20, Goulden met and began a relationship with Richard Pankhurst , a barrister who had advocated women's suffrage — and other causes, including freedom of speech and education reform — for years. Richard, 44 years old when they met, had earlier resolved to remain a bachelor to better serve the public. Their mutual affection was powerful, but the couple's happiness was diminished by the death of his mother the following year. Sophia Jane Goulden chastised her daughter for "throwing herself" at Richard  and advised her without success to exhibit more aloofness. Emmeline suggested to Richard that they avoid the legal formalities of marriage by entering into a free union ; he objected on the grounds that she would be excluded from political life as an unmarried woman.
He noted that his colleague Elizabeth Wolstenholme Elmy had faced social condemnation before she formalised her marriage to Ben Elmy. Emmeline Pankhurst tended to her husband and children, but still devoted time to political activities. Although she gave birth to five children in ten years, both she and Richard believed that she should not be "a household machine". Their daughter Christabel was born on 22 September , less than a year after the wedding. Pankhurst gave birth to another daughter, Estelle Sylvia , in and their son Henry Francis Robert, nicknamed Frank, in Soon afterwards Richard Pankhurst left the Liberal Party. He began expressing more radical socialist views and argued a case in court against several wealthy businessmen.
These actions roused Robert Goulden's ire and the mood in the house became tense. In , the Pankhursts moved to Chorlton-on-Medlock , and their daughter Adela was born. They moved to London the following year, where Richard ran unsuccessfully for election as a Member of Parliament and Pankhurst opened a small fabric shop called Emerson and Company, together with her sister Mary Jane. In , Francis developed diphtheria and died on 11 September.
Overwhelmed with grief, Pankhurst commissioned two portraits of the dead boy but was unable to look at them and hid them in a bedroom cupboard. The family concluded that a faulty drainage system at the back of their house had caused their son's illness. Pankhurst blamed the poor conditions of the neighbourhood, and the family moved to a more affluent middle class district at Russell Square. She was soon pregnant once more and declared that the child was "Frank coming again". Pankhurst made their Russell Square home into a centre for political intellectuals and activists, including, "Socialists, Protesters, Anarchists, Suffragists, Free Thinkers, Radicals and Humanitarians of all schools. Her daughter Sylvia later wrote: "Beauty and appropriateness in her dress and household appointments seemed to her at all times an indispensable setting to public work.
In , Britain's first nationwide coalition of groups advocating women's right to vote, the National Society for Women's Suffrage NSWS , split after a majority of members decided to accept organisations affiliated with political parties. Angry at this decision, some of the group's leaders, including Lydia Becker and Millicent Fawcett , stormed out of the meeting and created an alternative organisation committed to the "old rules," called the Great College Street Society after the location of its headquarters. Some members of the PSS favoured a piecemeal approach to gaining the vote. Because it was often assumed that married women did not need the vote since their husbands "voted for them," some PSS members felt that the vote for single women and widows was a practical step along the path to full suffrage.
When the reluctance within the PSS to advocate on behalf of married women became clear, Pankhurst and her husband helped organise another new group dedicated to voting rights for all women — married and unmarried. The WFL was considered a radical organisation, since in addition to women's suffrage it supported equal rights for women in the areas of divorce and inheritance. It also advocated trade unionism and sought alliances with socialist organisations. The more conservative group that emerged from the NSWS split spoke out against what they called the "extreme left" wing of the movement. The group fell apart one year later. Pankhurst's shop never succeeded and he had trouble attracting business in London.
With the family's finances in jeopardy, Richard travelled regularly to northwest England , where most of his clients were. In the Pankhursts closed the store and returned to Manchester. They stayed for several months in the seaside town of Southport , then moved briefly to the village of Disley and finally settled into a house in Manchester's Victoria Park. The girls were enrolled in Manchester Girls' High School, where they felt confined by the large student population and strictly regimented schedule.
Pankhurst began to work with several political organisations, distinguishing herself for the first time as an activist in her own right and gaining respect in the community. One biographer describes this period as her "emergence from Richard's shadow. She quickly grew disenchanted with the group's moderate positions, however, especially its unwillingness to support Irish Home Rule and the aristocratic leadership of Archibald Primrose. In Pankhurst had met and befriended Keir Hardie , a socialist from Scotland. The local branch refused her admission on the grounds of her sex, but she eventually joined the ILP nationally. Christabel later wrote of her mother's enthusiasm for the party and its organising efforts: "In this movement she hoped there might be the means of righting every political and social wrong.
One of her first activities with the ILP found Pankhurst distributing food to poor men and women through the Committee for the Relief of the Unemployed. She was appalled by the conditions she witnessed first-hand in the Manchester workhouse :. The first time I went into the place I was horrified to see little girls seven and eight years old on their knees scrubbing the cold stones of the long corridors I found that there were pregnant women in that workhouse, scrubbing floors, doing the hardest kind of work, almost until their babies came into the world Of course the babies are very badly protected These poor, unprotected mothers and their babies I am sure were potent factors in my education as a militant.
Pankhurst immediately began to change these conditions, and established herself as a successful voice of reform on the Board of Guardians. Her chief opponent was a passionate man named Mainwaring, known for his rudeness. Recognising that his loud anger was hurting his chances of persuading those aligned with Pankhurst, he kept a note nearby during meetings: "Keep your temper! After helping her husband with another unsuccessful parliamentary campaign, Pankhurst faced legal troubles in when she and two men violated a court order against ILP meetings at Boggart Hole Clough. With Richard's volunteering his time as legal counsel , they refused to pay fines, and the two men spent a month in prison.
The punishment was never ordered for Pankhurst, however, possibly because the magistrate feared public backlash against the imprisonment of a woman so respected in the community. Asked by an ILP reporter if she were prepared to spend time in prison, Pankhurst replied: "Oh, yes, quite. It wouldn't be so very dreadful, you know, and it would be a valuable experience. During the struggle at Boggart Hole Clough, Richard Pankhurst began to experience severe stomach pains. He had developed a gastric ulcer , and his health deteriorated in The family moved briefly to Mobberley , with the hope that country air would help his condition.
He soon felt well again, and the family returned to Manchester in the autumn. In the summer of , he suffered a sudden relapse. A telegram arrived from Richard, reading: "I am not well. Please come home, my love. On 5 July, while on a train from London to Manchester, she noticed a newspaper announcing the death of Richard Pankhurst. The loss of her husband left Pankhurst with new responsibilities and a significant amount of debt. She moved the family to a smaller house at 62 Nelson Street, resigned from the Board of Guardians, and was given a paid position as Registrar of Births and Deaths in Chorlton.
This work gave her more insight into the conditions of women in the region. She wrote in her autobiography: "They used to tell me their stories, dreadful stories some of them, and all of them pathetic with that patient and uncomplaining pathos of poverty. In she was elected to the Manchester School Board and saw new examples of women suffering unequal treatment and limited opportunities. During this time she also re-opened her store, with the hope that it would provide additional income for the family. The individual identities of the Pankhurst children began to emerge around the time of their father's death.
Before long they were all involved in the struggle for women's suffrage. Christabel enjoyed a privileged status among the daughters, as Sylvia noted in "She was our mother's favourite; we all knew it, and I, for one, never resented the fact. She soon became involved with the suffrage movement and joined her mother at speaking events.
She went on to study art in Florence and Venice. Adela was sent to a local boarding school , where she was cut off from her friends and contracted head lice. Harry also had difficulty at school; he suffered from measles and vision problems. By , Pankhurst believed that years of moderate speeches and promises about women's suffrage from members of parliament MPs had yielded no progress. Although suffrage bills in , , and had shown promise, each was defeated. She doubted that political parties, with their many agenda items, would ever make women's suffrage a priority.
It was necessary to abandon the patient tactics of existing advocacy groups, she believed, in favour of more militant actions. Thus on 10 October Pankhurst and several colleagues founded the Women's Social and Political Union WSPU , an organisation open only to women and focused on direct action to win the vote. The group's early militancy took non-violent forms. In addition to making speeches and gathering petition signatures, the WSPU organised rallies and published a newsletter called Votes for Women. The group also convened a series of "Women's Parliaments" to coincide with official government sessions. When a bill for women's suffrage was filibustered on 12 May , Pankhurst and other WSPU members began a loud protest outside the Parliament building.
Police immediately forced them away from the building, where they regrouped and demanded passage of the bill. Although the bill was never resurrected, Pankhurst considered it a successful demonstration of militancy's power to capture attention. Before long, all three of her daughters became active with the WSPU. Christabel was arrested after spitting at a policeman during a meeting of the Liberal Party in October ;  Adela and Sylvia were arrested a year later during a protest outside Parliament.
She was charged with obstruction and sentenced to six weeks in prison. She spoke out against the conditions of her confinement, including vermin, meagre food, and the "civilised torture of solitary confinement and absolute silence" to which she and others were ordered. Pankhurst was arrested seven times before women's suffrage was approved. During her trial on 21 October she told the court: "We are here not because we are law-breakers; we are here in our efforts to become law-makers. The exclusive focus of the WSPU on votes for women was another hallmark of its militancy. While other organizations agreed to work with individual political parties, the WSPU insisted on separating itself from — and in many cases opposing — parties which did not make women's suffrage a priority.
The group protested against all candidates belonging to the party of the ruling government since it refused to pass women's suffrage legislation. This brought them into immediate conflict with Liberal Party organisers, particularly since many Liberal candidates supported women's suffrage. One early target of WSPU opposition was future Prime Minister Winston Churchill ; his opponent attributed Churchill's defeat in part to "those ladies who are sometimes laughed at. Members of the WSPU were sometimes heckled and derided for spoiling elections for Liberal candidates.
On 18 January , Pankhurst and her associate Nellie Martel were attacked by an all-male crowd of Liberal supporters who blamed the WSPU for costing them a recent by-election to the Conservative candidate. The men threw clay, rotten eggs, and stones packed in snow; the women were beaten and Pankhurst's ankle was severely bruised. Until party leaders made the vote for women a priority, however, the WSPU vowed to continue its militant activism.
Pankhurst and others in the union saw party politics as distracting to the goal of women's suffrage and criticised other organisations for putting party loyalty ahead of women's votes. As the WSPU gained recognition and notoriety for its actions, Pankhurst resisted efforts to democratise the organisation itself. In a small group of members led by Teresa Billington-Greig called for more involvement from the rank-and-file suffragettes at the union's annual meetings. In response, Pankhurst announced at a WSPU meeting that elements of the organisation's constitution relating to decision-making were void and cancelled the annual meetings.
She also insisted that a small committee chosen by the members in attendance be allowed to co-ordinate WSPU activities.Nearly women took part in the Edward Kennedy Ellington: A Career In Music and in the ensuing march to the House of Commons, where small groups of women were allowed in to speak Little Bighorn Mission Command Analysis their MPs Analysis: Homework Should Be Banned From Schools initially Should Hansel Have Stuck The Bone locked out. The Ladies Association illustrated how the Revolution was propelling emmeline pankhurst freedom or death into new forms of public activism. In the hunger strike was emmeline pankhurst freedom or death to the Should Hansel Have Stuck The Bone repertoire of Wild Horse Management Research Paper. Words: - Pages: 8. American suffragists can do that very well for themselves.