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Suffragette: My Own Story

4.16  ·  Rating details ·  1,299 ratings  ·  157 reviews
The closing paragraphs of this book were written in the late summer of 1914, when the armies of every great power in Europe were being mobilised for savage, unsparing, barbarous warfare-against one another, against small and unaggressive nations, against helpless women and children, against civilisation itself. How mild, by comparison with the despatches in the daily newsp ...more
Paperback, 336 pages
Published April 1st 2015 by Hesperus Classics (first published 1914)
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4.16  · 
Rating details
 ·  1,299 ratings  ·  157 reviews

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Nothing to celebrate ?

I'd be lying if I claimed to be a fan of Madame Pankhurst and her gang, but given the centenary of the Representation of the Peoples Act (1918), and the fact that a steeply discounted copy of her book flaunted itself wantonly before my eyes for a mere fifty pence I willingly undertook to see how self-serving her memoir was.

I found it a hugely entertaining and worthwhile read, although towards the end the lengthy accounts of trials for all their rhetorical sparkle was a lit
Mar 27, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Thank god we have people like Emmeline Pankhurst that existed in the world! What an inspiring and true pioneer of her generation so dedicated to the suffrage cause and paving the way for future generations of women. Incredible story of perseverance, of ardent passion and how a group of committed women incited others to gather together with a single minded purpose. This is an important history lesson that should be compulsory learning, how valuable to teach our young girls the lessons of this cou ...more
Apr 02, 2015 rated it really liked it
Very surprised to enjoy this so much. I thought I knew all I wanted to about Emmeline Pankhurst. She was probably the first name I learnt in connection with the suffragette movement and arguably the most well known figure. In recent years I've learned more about her life that I didn't like, such as her dismissal of the Pethick-Lawrences, disownment of her two younger daughters, her activism in WW1 and some of her more militant tactics. So what else was there to find out? Quite a lot actually. As ...more
Emmeline Pankhurst, principale rappresentante del movimento delle suffragette, si batté contro l’ostilità del governo che non voleva riconoscere il diritto di voto alle donne.
La protesta, iniziata in modo pacifico interrompendo i discorsi dei rappresentati politici con una domanda ripetuta all’infinito: «Il governo liberale darà il voto alle donne?», non ottenendo che qualche vaga promessa destinata a perdersi nel nulla sfociò in atti di rappresaglia.
Emmeline e le donne del movimento subirono
Mar 22, 2015 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: group, non-fiction
Most people have heard of Emmeline Pankhurst and her campaign for women's suffrage up to 1914. In this book she gives us her view of it and the reasons for the growing militancy in the WSPU she founded. She wanted representation on the same terms as men in national elections, which is only fair.
The UK electoral franchise before the Great War was very unfair. Only a minority of wealthier men could vote. The Liberal Party, when in power, introduced three Representation of the People Acts, which in
The writing itself was somewhat detached - almost more of a daily log than a real autobiography. But that did not detract from the bravery and dedication of the suffragettes and their allies, nor from the frustrating sexism and misogyny they dealt with daily. I also loved this book because it makes you think about where to draw the line when fighting for one's rights. Is there even a line? Where does protest become revolution? Or insurrection?

Luckily, a lot has changed in just 100 years - enoug
Feb 22, 2015 rated it really liked it
Emmeline's own account up to 1914, before she threw herself into the war effort, but before 1918 when women's suffrage was finally granted.
Written in a report style and full of political details I skimmed over, but an amazing story of a long, bitter struggle against a stubborn male dominated political system holding tightly onto their patriarchal control of women's rights. Her many years working with the poor: women, children and the workhouses made clear the hopeless prospects for women. They
May 20, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The most powerful aspect of My Own Story - part autobiography, part history, part justification of militancy - is that it was written before the battle for women's votes was won. The effect is that the reader comes close to feeling like an real-time participant in the escalating battle between the W.S.P.U. and the government. Pankhurst doesn't necessarily come off as likeable or at times even reasonable, but there is no doubting her courage and the courage of countless other women. Although I re ...more
Dana Loo
Una lettura illuminante, a tratti dura, ma che mi ha coinvolto e fatto pensare molto. Donne straordinarie che hanno dato tutto per l'emancipazione femminile, per acquisire finalmente lo status politico e sociale che gli spettava senza fermarsi mai di fronte a nulla. Derise, picchiate, imprigionate, torturate ma sempre più forti e convinte che stessero lottando per una causa che avrebbe sortito dei cambiamenti sociali radicali ed epocali...
Dovremmo essere tutte grate a queste figure così indomite
Mar 31, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Well worth reading. The way the establishment fought against women's voting rights is scary and it wasn't that long ago. They also unsurprisingly manipulated the press and reneged on promises. Films like Suffragette only show the half of it.
That said this is Emmeline's versions of events, worth reading are the books by Jill Liddington: Rebel Girls, and One Hand Tied Behind Us which give a much broader view. Noteworthy omissions in Mrs P's book include her estranged daughter Adela who was shipped
Knowing Emmeline Pankhurst by reputation only, and having watching and thoroughly enjoyed Suffragette which tells the story through the eyes of one those less famous women who worked and fought with Emmeline, I wasn't sure how I would feel about this. Luckily, Mrs Pankhurst lived up to her reputation, holding back nothing to tell the story not just of her but of the men and women she met, was inspired by and held back by. Emmeline is as clear and concise in her writing as she was in her speeches ...more
Oct 11, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
As I was going to see Suffragette - in cinemas now, go see it! - I decided upon reading this memoir first. Though I am not afraid of calling myself a feminist, the militant suffragette movement has always troubled me in terms of morality, right and wrong, whether it was truly necessary.

If there is anything this book has managed to convince me of, it is that it was, indeed, necessary. Pankhurst narrates the story from the very beginning, when ideas of suffrage were slowly materialising in a polit
Sally Flint
Oct 04, 2015 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2015-reads
This took me forever to read but I am really glad that I persevered. A very factual account of the suffragette movement we get an enormous amount of detail about government bills that were turned down again and again; of this, I admit, I wearied. I was hoping for a bit more of Emmeline's personality to shine through, and was curious about heraffair with Keir Hardie, but none of that was revealed. It does seem though that Keir was one of very few pro women getting the vote politicians around. Llo ...more
Melinda Elizabeth
My Own Story is Emmeline Pankhurst’s suffragette experience. Penned from her own endeavors to secure the vote for women, we follow Emmeline through significant moments in history as she pushes the cause further towards a hopeful resolution and recognition.

The most poignant element of this book is that it’s a recent history of women. Penned over 100 years ago, there’s plenty that is yet to be achieved for women that Pankhurst and the suffragettes identified in their cause all those years ago.

Jul 09, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
New favourite book ever...
If I could only save three books from a burning building, this volume would be there. (The others...1984 and The Plague Dogs). What an inspirational and captivating account detailing the relentless struggle for suffrage by our more militant ancestresses, as told by Emmeline Pankhurst. With only a scant understanding of the topic previously I was most interested by the depth of the account, in particular understanding the background for the rise of the militant WSPU, bor
Jun 07, 2016 rated it liked it
Shelves: non-fiction
An interesting memoir/informative recap of the Suffragette movement in the UK. This book made me feel a mix of emotions as I finished it on the same day that my country (The Bahamas) voted against four bills that would bring more gender parity to the constitution.
I listened to the audiobook which was great and I would definitely recommend it. As for the content, while the Suffragettes' struggle for the vote was more physically violent (against the Suffragettes) than I'd previously been aware (vi
May 02, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Emmeline Pankhurst, these days, has a reputation for being stern and deeply unforgiving of those who have the temerity to disagree with her - a reputation that's probably deserved given that she cut off all ties with two of her daughters (even packing one off to Australia).

But, what this book shows is that she was undeniably a great leader who galvanised women into action. While her militancy tactics may or may not have done more harm than good in getting woman the vote, she certainly was instru
Yara (The Narratologist)
Until recently, you would not have been able to find this memoir at your local bookstore – you would have had to resort to either a specialised publisher or Project Gutenberg. It still doesn't have a cover art picture on Goodreads, that's how little this book is read these days. However, I have eight magic words for you that kicked it right back into the public eye: “Now The Subject of a Major Motion Picture.” Thank you, Suffragette (2015). Republished under the title Suffragette: My Own Story, ...more
Rosa Ramôa
Jan 13, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
"Os meus pais discutiam a educação dos meus irmãos como algo de muito importante;mas a minha educação e a da minha irmã nem sequer eram discutidas.(...)Apelei às mulheres para adotarem estratégias de rebelião iguais às que os homens utilizam em qualquer revolução.(...)As lutas dos homens,ao longo dos séculos,encheram o Mundo de sangue.Mas o combate das mulheres não custou uma única vida,a não ser as daquelas que se sacrificaram por esta causa justa.(...)Temos de fazer as mulheres contarem tanto ...more
Polina Kryukova
Sep 17, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Amazing, thought-provoking, inspiring, at times enraging, but all in all a very deep and enjoyable read. At a certain page I realised that if I met Mrs Pankhurst in real life I would follow her without second thought, I would devote all I have to the common cause and fight with all my strength. It made me realise that standing my ground despite everything is possible. Every female must read this book, because this is the history that is extremely important and that is omitted by most school book ...more
Jan 25, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
An abridged version of this autobiography should form part of the school curriculum and if one ever feels too lazy to vote this is the reason why you must chose a candidate. This is Emmeline Pankhurst's own words, notes and narrative about events as they unfolded. The woman were brave, intelligent and totally committed against a government ( all parties) who chose to criminalise woman rather than listen to the issues. I was surprised by the number of famous names who were anti- suffrage includin ...more
Leanne (Booksandbabble)
review to come..
Winter Sophia Rose
Insightful, Moving & Fascinating! A Powerful Read! I Loved It!
Louise Bray
Feb 22, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
“But perhaps this one, hastily prepared as it has been, will give the reader of the future a clearer impression of the strenuousness and the desperation of the conflict, and also something of the heretofore undreamed of courage and fighting strength of women, who, having learned the joy of battle, lose all sense of fear and continue their struggle up to and past the gates of death, never flinching at any step of the way.”

An absolutely incredible part of British history, and a must-read for every
Marion Osborne
Feb 04, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I actually first started this book in Jan 2016 but didn't have the brain power to commit to it. It's one which I've kept wanting to go back to and finally made the time in January 2018. It felt apt with 2018 being the anniversary of the first bill giving (some) women the vote also with women's rights being openly explored again.
This is a really interesting read. There was so much about the suffragette movement which I didn't know or had misunderstood. It explored in detail the necessity of mili
"Fortunati sono quegli uomini e quelle donne che nascono in un'epoca in cui è in corso una grande battaglia per la libertà umana. Ed è una fortuna in più avere dei genitori che prendono parte ai grandi movimenti del loro tempo in prima persona."

Sono queste le parole che aprono l'autobiografia di Emmeline Pankhurst, fondatrice della Women's Social and Political Union (WSPU) e leader del movimento suffragista nel Regno Unito, sono le prime parole di una donna forte e coraggiosa ma soprattutto di u
Liz Draper
Thrilling events in the history of womens' politics.

As an inspirational political speaker, furthering the cause of Womens' Suffrage, Mrs Pankhurst was a phenomenon. As an author though, even in the context of a political memoir, she leaves a lot to be desired.
May 23, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Absolutely amazing story of these brave women fighting for their rights.
Let me first explain my reasoning behind the three thumb review; I found this book to be a strangely impersonal account of Mrs. Pankhurst’s life. It read more like a diary of the main events of the WSPU (Suffrage movement) in the lead up to the outbreak of World War I. This made it extremely difficult for me, as a reader, to get a handle on what she was really like as a person, or the opinions of others of the movement of which she and her sister, Christabel, were such a big part of in England; ...more
Sep 26, 2015 rated it it was amazing
An undervalued time in history. Women rising up and demanding to be counted as human beings. The extraordinary toll they put on themselves. Being beaten by police, angry mobs of men, forced feeding when they went on hunger strike, the abuse received when they went on thirst strike. This book clearly explains why non-violence resistance would never have worked for these women. Although they never shed blood or purposefully hurt anyone but themselves. These thousands of women, that's what it becam ...more
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Bright Young Things: April 2015- Suffragette: My Own Story by Emmeline Pankhurst 38 27 May 10, 2016 07:38AM  
Emmeline Pankhurst, my own story 1 3 Aug 03, 2013 11:05PM  
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Emmeline Pankhurst was a British political activist and leader of the British suffragette movement who helped women win the right to vote. In 1999 Time named Pankhurst as one of the 100 Most Important People of the 20th Century, stating: "she shaped an idea of women for our time; she shook society into a new pattern from which there could be no going back."

By Topical Press Agency, photographer unk
“Men make the moral code and they expect women to accept it. They have decided that it is entirely right and proper for men to fight for their liberties and their rights, but that it is not right and proper for women to fight for theirs.” 36 likes
“Governments have always tried to crush reform movements, to destroy ideas, to kill the thing that cannot die. Without regard to history, which shows that no Government have ever succeeded in doing this, they go on trying in the old, senseless way.” 11 likes
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