Thursday, December 1, 2011

On December 1

In this month in ...
... 1801 (210 years ago), a daughter, Suzanne, was born in Paris, to a father who was a hatmaker and revolutionary and a mother who died early from cancer. The girl thus aspired to a medical career; in vain, given that she was female. By the 1830s, having been abandoned by her husband, Suzanne Voilquin (right) was active in the socialist Saint-Simonist movement, rallying its women members as a cofounder of the journal La Femme libre. Disguised as a man, Voilquin began studying medicine, earned credentials as a midwife, and supported herself, her father, and an adopted niece, as the family moved from Paris to St. Petersburg to New Orleans. In that last city Voilquin died, in poverty, in 1877.

(Prior December 1 posts are here, here, here, and here.)

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