Le thème abordé dans ce dossier est celui de l'image et plus précisément l'évolution de l'image de la femme en Angleterre au début du vingtième siècle. Nous nous intéresserons aux mouvements féministes qui ont revendiqué des droits nouveaux notamment grâce à l'une des suffragettes les plus connues, Emily Pankhurst qui se battit pendant des années d'actions et de courage pourl'égalité entre hommes et femmes et l'obtention du droit de vote pour celles-ci.
Nous tenterons donc de répondre à la problématique suivante : Comment Emily Pankhurst a t-elle contribué au développement du féminisme en Angleterre ? Tout d'abord nous étudierons le contexte familial d'Emily Pankhurst et les valeurs transmises par ses parents, son enfance privilégiée et plus tard un mari et des enfantstous unis dans le même combat. Puis nous présenterons ses convictions sur le féminisme et les moyens qu'elle mit en œuvre pour les défendre et également pour propager ses idées et développer le féminisme en Angleterre.
I- Emily Pankhurst's family context
A- Her parents and their will of rebellion
Emily Pankhurst was born into a family which had been active in political agitation forgenerations. Her Mother Sophia Jane Craine, a "manx person", otherwise said a person who comes from The Isle of Man, took interest in womens' suffrage. Emily was introduced at a young age to the women's suffrage movement by her mother, and even attended meetings with her. Emily's Manx heritage was a possible source of her policital consciousness, especially since the Isle of Man was the first country togrant women the right to vote in national elections, in 1881.
Emily's Father, Robert Goulden was born in Manchester to a family of merchants. Robert was a successful businessman himself, with radical political beliefs. He served on the town council of Salford for several years. He was a great supporter of the arts, especially drama and reading. The Goulden's owned a theatre in Salford. Emily'sculture in the dramatic arts, and theatrics later showed. For example, she knew how to captivate an audience, by making interesting speeches, she was at ease in front of groups of people.
During the times that Emily was born, the masculine gender was considered superior. Emily's family was rather atypical. First of all, her mother knew how to read : something that was very rare during thosedays. The Gouldens were together, as a family, active in feminism and the abolition of slavery.
Emily's parents taught her to be loyal to her beliefs. Her strong character allowed her to go far, even on the wrong side of the law at times. Due to her parents wealth, Emily was lucky enough to receive an education and therefore had a priviliged childhood.
B- Her privileged childhood
To begin,Emily was born of the 14th of July 1858. She said that the fact she was born on the french 'day of the bastille' influenced her life, a quote she said in 1908: "I have always thought that the fact that I was born on that day had some kind of influence over my life." Emily was raised in Manchester, by parents whom encouraged her into a life as a wife and a mother, as it was the way of life in the late1800's. She once attended a womens voting rights meeting with her mother, at the age of fourteen. She got home from school one day to her mother getting ready to go to a suffragists meeting. Her mother explained to her that Lydia becker, the editor of a womens journal that her mother read entitled the "Womens suffrage Journal" was going to be speaking. She later wrote "I left the meeting aconscious and confirmed suffragist".
The gouldens were a relatively wealthy family, despite this: Emily didn't get the education of their brothers. Even though her parents supported the suffragist movement, they still believed that girls had less intellect than her male piers, yet Emily was very intelligent and well read. The role of a woman was to keep the house, have children, and they weren't...