Monday, 15 July 2013

Emily Wilding Davison: A Suffragette’s Family Album

We’re spoilt for choice with suffragist and suffragette literature at the moment, and much of it centres around Emily Wilding Davison, because June was the centenary of her death under the hooves of the king’s horse in Epsom.

This latest offering by Maureen Howes is something extra special, though. A Suffragette’s Family Album is the result of ten years of exhaustive research from Maureen, who has dedicated the past decade to uncovering every possible scrap of information about Emily. The book aims to help us try to piece together a complete picture of one of the best remembered suffragettes, and to try to help inform us about her actions on that fateful derby day.

Emily’s closest surviving relative Geoffrey Davison has written the book’s preface, which is an indication of the close involvement of Emily’s family with Maureen’s research. And through postcards, letters, photos – even Emily’s christening gown, Maureen pieces together Emily’s entire life story, which really comes to life thanks to the many photographs.

With the aid of timelines about Emily individually as well as the suffrage campaign generally, plus a great deal of supporting background information about the other campaigners who worked with Emily, A Suffragette’s Family Album is an extremely authoritative and comprehensive guide to Emily Wilding Davison. Maureen has evidently worked extremely hard on this book, and her decade of research has more than paid off.

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