Dead Socialist Watch, #316

Stella Browne, socialist feminist campaigner for the reform of abortion law. After Somerville College, Oxford and spells as a teacher and librarian she began to make a name for herself in the debates concerning women’s sexual desire before and after the First World War. She conducted a twenty-five year correspondence with Havelock Ellis and translated a number of works of continental sexology in the interwar period. An active participant in the work of the Malthusian League, she was a significant champion of birth control and far-reaching abortion rights, as well as campaigning around divorce law and against the stigma still attached to illegitimacy. At various times she was a Communist, Fabian, member of the Chelsea branch of the Labour Party, and “for a few years” member of the Eugenics Society, though she opposed its preferred criterion of “fitness”, and her ODNB biographer remarks that she probably joined the society “to represent the interests of the Abortion Law Reform Association of which she was a founder”. Born Halifax, Nova Scotia, 9 May 1880, died Sefton Park, Liverpool, 8 May 1955.

One thought on “Dead Socialist Watch, #316”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *