activists business human rights workers rights

Safia Minney

Safia Minney is a British social entrepreneur and author who founded People Tree, a pioneering sustainable and Fair Trade fashion label.   She began her career in marketing, where she realised that she could use her skills for social good by raising awareness of social and environmental issues. After moving to Japan where she worked for Amnesty International, …

zine

Zine submissions wanted!

I’m now accepting submissions for the next Illustrated Women in History zine! Deadline is the 22nd of February. Please search to see who has been featured already before you decide on who you want to illustrate and/or write about. Submissions should be approx. 500 words maximum. All contributors will be sent a free copy of …

politics social reform womens rights workers rights

Susan Lawrence

Susan Lawrence was one of the first three Labour women MPs, and the first woman to represent a London constituency.   Lawrence began her political life as a Conservative member of London County Council. In 1912, she met trade unionist Mary Macarthur in 1912 and was converted to socialism. She rejoined the council as a member of the Labour …

equal right to education politics social reform womens rights womens suffrage workers rights

Ellen Wilkinson

Ellen Wilkinson was the first female Minister of Education and the second woman to become a Cabinet Minister.   Wilkinson was known by some as “Red Ellen”, as in the early 1920s before she entered Parliament she was a member of the Communist Party of Great Britain. Before entering politics, Wilkinson worked for a women’s suffrage …

anti-FGM politics

Katherine Stewart-Murray

Kathrine Stewart-Murray, Duchess of Atholl, was a Scottish noblewoman and Scottish Unionist Party politician.   Stewart-Murray was active in Scottish local government, despite the fact that she herself had been an anti-suffrage campaigner prior to WWI. She served on the “Highlands and Islands Medical Service Committee” that was credited with creating the forerunner of the National …

equal right to education politics womens rights womens suffrage

Margaret Wintringham

Margaret Wintringham was the first female Liberal MP and the first British-born woman to take a seat in Parliament.   Winteringham had begun her working life as a school headmistress, a magistrate and a member of the Grimsby Education Committee. She was a member of the National Union of Women Workers, the British Temperance Association, the National Union …

LGBTQIA+

Gwendolyn Ann Smith

Gwendolyn Ann Smith is a transgender woman who founded Transgender Day of Remembrance, a day to memorialise people who have been killed as a result of anti-transgender prejudice. In 1992, Smith lobbied America Online, getting the company to change its policies and allow discussions on gender issues on their service. A year later, she created the Transgender Community …

STEM

Mary Somerville

The biography for this weeks Illustrated Woman in History was submitted by Catherine Haustein A Passion for Science: Mary Somerville Mary Somerville was born in Scotland on Dec. 26, 1780, and had four supreme passions in her life: her family, equality for women, science, and birds. Described as feminine in manner and appearance, as a girl …

black history literature

Ntozake Shange

Ntozake Shange was an American playwright and poet best known for the Obie Award-winning play for colored girls who have considered suicide / when the rainbow is enuf. She was a self-proclaimed black feminist, and her work frequently addressed race and feminism. Shange was born Paulette L. Williams in 1948 in Trenton, New Jersey, where …