On this day on 4th December

On this day in 1760 anti-slavery campaigner Elizabeth Coltman was born in Leicester.  Her father, John Coltman, was a successful worsted manufacturer. Her mother, Elizabeth Cartwright (1737–1811), was a published poet and book reviewer. John Wesley visited the family home in 1785.

Elizabeth, known as Bess when young, "was singular in her childhood" and it was said that when she gave her "pennies to a beggar and choosing for rescue a plain kitten in preference to a pretty one". Her talent for landscape painting gave her father "half a mind" to "make her artist" like Angelica Kauffman.

On 10th March 1787 Elizabeth married John Heyrick, a Methodist lawyer. Elizabeth Heyrick was still childless when her husband died of a heart-attack eight years later. According to her biographer: "The marriage was said to have been stormy, but she mourned fervently, with lifelong observance of the anniversary of his death. They had no children."

After the death of her husband Elizabeth Heyrick moved back into her parents home. Elizabeth, now a member of the Society of Friends, renounced all worldly pleasures and devoted herself to social reform. A follower of Tom Paine, she campaigned against bull-baiting and became a prison visitor. Elizabeth also wrote eighteen political pamphlets on a wide variety of subjects including, the Corn Laws. In one pamphlet she pointed out that a women was "especially qualified to plead for the oppressed."

Adam Hochschild has pointed out that Elizabeth Heyrick was a committed political reformer "She (Elizabeth Heyrick) stopped a bull-baiting contest by buying the bull and hiding it in the parlor of a nearby cottage until the angry crowd went away. To experience the life of Irish migrant workers, she lived in a shepherd's cottage eating only potatoes. She visited prisons and paid fines to get poachers released... She called for laws reforming prisons and limiting the workday; she supported a strike by weavers in her hometown of Leicester, even though her own brother was an employer in the industry."

Heyrick's main concern was the campaign against slavery. Her elder brother, Samuel Coltman, had been part of the original abolition movement in the 1790s. It is claimed that Elizabeth was influenced by the ideas of the Unitarian movement. "Many unitarians concluded that the only significant difference between women and men was men's capacity for physical force. There appeared no 'natural' reasons why women should not use their capacities for intellectual and moral growth to bring social progress, including the removal of slavery as an institution that stunted intellectual and moral growth."

In 1824 Elizabeth Heyrick published her pamphlet Immediate not Gradual Abolition. In her pamphlet Heyrick argued passionately in favour of the immediate emancipation of the slaves in the British colonies. This differed from the official policy of the Anti-Slavery Society that believed in gradual abolition. She called this "the very masterpiece of satanic policy" and called for a boycott of the sugar produced on slave plantations.

In the pamphlet Heyrick attacked the "slow, cautious, accommodating measures" of the leaders. "The perpetuation of slavery in our West India colonies is not an abstract question, to be settled between the government and the planters; it is one in which we are all implicated, we are all guilty of supporting and perpetuating slavery. The West Indian planter and the people of this country stand in the same moral relation to each other as the thief and receiver of stolen goods".

The leadership of the organisation attempted to suppress information about the existence of this pamphlet and William Wilberforce gave out instructions for leaders of the movement not to speak at women's anti-slavery societies. His biographer, William Hague, claims that Wilberforce was unable to adjust to the idea of women becoming involved in politics "occurring as this did nearly a century before women would be given the vote in Britain".

Although women were allowed to be members they were virtually excluded from its leadership. Wilberforce disliked to militancy of the women and wrote to Thomas Babington protesting that "for ladies to meet, to publish, to go from house to house stirring up petitions - these appear to me proceedings unsuited to the female character as delineated in Scripture".

However, George Stephen disagreed with Wilberforce on this issue and claimed that their energy was vital in the success of the movement: "Ladies Associations did everything... They circulated publications; they procured the money to publish; they talked, coaxed and lectured: they got up public meetings and filled our halls and platforms when the day arrived; they carried round petitions and enforced the duty of signing them... In a word they formed the cement of the whole anti-slavery building - without their aid we never should have kept standing."

Thomas Clarkson, another leader of the ant-slavery movement, was much more sympathetic towards women. Unusually for a man of his day, he believed women deserved a full education and a role in public life and admired the way the Quakers allowed women to speak in their meetings. Clarkson told Elizabeth Heyrick's friend, Lucy Townsend, that he objected to the fact that "women are still weighed in a different scale from men... If homage be paid to their beauty, very little is paid to their opinions."

Records show that about ten per cent of the financial supporters of the organisation were women. In some areas, such as Manchester, women made up over a quarter of all subscribers. Lucy Townsend asked Thomas Clarkson how she could contribute in the fight against slavery. He replied that it would be a good idea to establish a women's anti-slavery society. (

Elizabeth Heyrick was an early exponent of direct action and organised a sugar boycott in Leicester. She visited all the city's grocers to urge them to only stock goods that did not involve slavery. She pointed out: "The West Indian planter and the people of this country, stand in the same moral relation to each other, as the thief and the receiver of stolen goods... Why petition Parliament at all, to do that for us, which... we can do more speedily and more effectively for ourselves."

On 8th April, 1825, Lucy Townsend held a meeting at her home to discuss the issue of the role of women in the anti-slavery movement. Townsend, Elizabeth Heyrick, Mary Lloyd, Sarah Wedgwood, Sophia Sturge and the other women at the meeting decided to form the Birmingham Ladies Society for the Relief of Negro Slaves (later the group changed its name to the Female Society for Birmingham). The group "promoted the sugar boycott, targeting shops as well as shoppers, visiting thousands of homes and distributing pamphlets, calling meetings and drawing petitions."

The society which was, from its foundation, independent of both the national Anti-Slavery Society and of the local men's anti-slavery society. As Clare Midgley has pointed out: "It acted as the hub of a developing national network of female anti-slavery societies, rather than as a local auxiliary. It also had important international connections, and publicity on its activities in Benjamin Lundy's abolitionist periodical The Genius of Universal Emancipation influenced the formation of the first female anti-slavery societies in America".

The formation of other independent women's groups soon followed the setting up of the Female Society for Birmingham. This included groups in Nottingham (Ann Taylor Gilbert), Sheffield (Mary Anne Rawson, Mary Roberts), Leicester (Elizabeth Heyrick, Susanna Watts), Glasgow (Jane Smeal), Norwich (Amelia Opie, Anna Gurney), London (Mary Anne Schimmelpenninck, Mary Foster), Darlington (Elizabeth Pease) and Chelmsford (Anne Knight). Eventually there were seventy-three of these women's organisations campaigning against slavery.

Although virtually all the prominent male opponents of slavery were still talking about the freeing of the slaves over a thirty year period, Elizabeth Heyrick, severely criticised these men and demanded a different strategy. In the 1826 General Election she called for people to vote only for candidates who supported the freeing the slaves now. She quoted a letter that she had received from a woman in Wiltshire: "Men may propose only gradually to abolish the worst of crimes... but why should we countenance such enormities? We must not talk of gradually abolishing murder, licentiousness, cruelty, tyranny."

The Anti-Slavery society realised the importance of Elizabeth Heyrick's as a propagandist for the cause. Her writing had the ability to arouse public opinion. In 1828 they printed copies of her pamphlet, Appeal to the Hearts and Consciences of British Women. The main method of distribution was house-to-house canvassing, where publications were sold to the better-off or lent to the poor.

In 1830, the Female Society for Birmingham submitted a resolution to the National Conference of the Anti-Slavery Society calling for the organisation to campaign for an immediate end to slavery in the British colonies. Elizabeth Heyrick, who was treasurer of the organisation suggested a new strategy to persuade the male leadership to change its mind on this issue. In April 1830 they decided that the group would only give their annual £50 donation to the national anti-slavery society only "when they are willing to give up the word 'gradual' in their title." At the national conference the following month, the Anti-Slavery Society agreed to drop the words "gradual abolition" from its title. It also agreed to support Female Society's plan for a new campaign to bring about immediate abolition.

In her final years Elizabeth Heyrick grew very depressed about her lack of success to get slavery abolished. She wrote to Lucy Townsend: "Nothing human can dispel that despairing torpor into which I have been plunging deeper and deeper for many months past." Elizabeth Heyrick died on 18th October 1831 and therefore did not live to see the passing of the 1833 Abolition of Slavery Act.

Elizabeth Heyrick
Elizabeth Heyrick

On this day in 1795 Thomas Carlyle, the eldest son of James Carlyle, a stonemason, and Margaret Aitken, the daughter of a bankrupt Dumfriesshire farmer, was born in Ecclefechan in Scotland. His mother gave birth to eight children after Thomas: Alexander (1797–1876), Janet (1799–1801), John Aitken Carlyle (1801–1879), Margaret (1803–1830), James (1805–1890), Mary (1808–1888), Jane (1810–1888), and a second Janet (1813–1897).

Carlyle was brought up as a strict Calvinist and was educated at the village school. According to his biographer, Fred Kaplan: "As a boy he learned reading from his mother, arithmetic from his father; he attended a private school in Ecclefechan and then, at the age of six, the nearby Hoddam parish school. He immediately became the pride of the schoolmaster, the young person on whom approving adults and jealous schoolmates place the burden of differentness. For his parents that quality had its rightful place in the circle of tradition. If their son was to be a man of learning, he would be a minister of the Lord; within their society the alternative was either madness or apostasy." Carlyle later wrote: "A man's religion consists not of the many things he is in doubt of and tries to believe, but of the few he is assured of, and has no need of effort for believing".

In 1806 he entered Annan Academy, a school that specialized in training large classes, at low cost, for university entrance at the age of fourteen. At this time his best subject was mathematics but he also excelled in foreign languages. He received training in French and Latin but over the next few years taught himself Spanish, Italian, and German. Carlyle also took a keen interest in literature and read the work of Daniel Defoe, Henry Fielding, Tobias Smollett, Laurence Sterne and William Congreve. He told Henry Fielding Dickens that he was a "gawky youth with a shock of red hair, and explained how he used to be bullied by other boys."

Carlyle was an excellent student and he won his place at the University of Edinburgh. In November 1809 he walked the 80 mile journey to Edinburgh. It took him three days and he later commented that by the beginning of the second day he had travelled further from Ecclefechan than his father was ever to do in his life. Carlyle was very unhappy in first year at university. His religious upbringing made it impossible for "him to participate" in the "amusements, too often riotous and libertine" of the other students.

Carlyle's father expected him to attend divinity school after completing his university studies. However, he rejected this idea and in 1814 became a mathematics teacher at Annan Academy at £70 per annum. In 1816 he obtained a teaching position at Kirkcaldy where he taught Latin, French, arithmetic, bookkeeping, geometry, navigation and geography. In November 1818, suffering from depression, Carlyle resigned and returned to Edinburgh.

In late May 1821 met the recently widowed Grace Welsh (1782–1842) and her nineteen-year-old daughter Jane Baillie Welsh. Carlyle was immediately impressed with Jane and described her as a "tall aquiline figure, of elegant carriage and air". According to Fred Kaplan, the author of Thomas Carlyle: A Biography (1983): "Carlyle spoke that evening of his own reading, writing, and literary ambitions. Jane listened intently, impressed by his learning and amused by his Annandale accent and country awkwardness.... Frightened of marriage because, among other reasons, she was frightened of sex, Jane Welsh could not imagine that such a man could become her husband." However, she was willing to read the articles he was writing and came to the conclusion that he was a "genius".

Although he disliked teaching, Carlyle agreed to tutor the two sons of Isabella and Charles Buller, on the rather generous sum of £200 per annum, about twice as much as his father had ever earned as a stonemason. In the spring of 1823 Carlyle was commissioned to write a short biographical sketch of Friedrich Schiller for The London Magazine. He was also an expert on Johann Wolfgang von Goethe and in 1824 he completed a translation of Wilhelm Meister's Apprenticeship. Later that year he moved to London where he associated with Charles Lamb, Samuel Taylor Coleridge, and Henry Crabb Robinson.

After much prevarication Jane Welsh agreed to marry Thomas Carlyle. The wedding took place on 17th October 1826. Fred Kaplan has argued: "Clearly, puritanical inhibitions and romantic idealizations were in the 7 foot-wide bed with two sexual innocents. Fragile evidence suggests that though they were able to express affection with whispers and embraces their sexual relationship did not provide physical satisfaction to either of them, despite their efforts during the first half-dozen or so years of the marriage." Carlyle's biographer James Anthony Froude has argued that the marriage was unconsummated.

The couple settled in Craigenputtock. He told his friend, Thomas Story Spedding: "It is one of the most unoccupied, loneliest, far from one of the joyfullest of men. From time to time I feel it absolutely necessary to get into entire solitude; to beg all the world, with passion if they will not grant it otherwise, to be so kind as to leave me altogether alone. One needs to unravel and bring into some articulation the villainous chaos that gathers round heart and head in that loud-roaring Babel; to repent of one's many sins, to be right miserable, humiliated, and do penance for them - with hope of absolution, of new activity and better obedience!"

Carlyle appeared to hold his wife in great esteem. He later wrote: "She could do anything well to which she chose to give herself.... She had a keen clear incisive faculty of seeing through things, and hating all that was make-believe or pretentious. She had good sense that amounted to genius. She loved to learn and she cultivated all her faculties to the utmost of her power. She was always witty … in a word she was fascinating and everybody fell in love with her."

Thomas Carlyle's reputation as an expert on literature and philosophy resulted in him receiving commissions from The Edinburgh Review and The Foreign Review. He also started work on his first book, Sartor Resartus. However, he had great difficulty finding someone willing to publish this philosophical work. It eventually was serialized in Fraser's Magazine (1833-34).

Thomas and Jane Carlyle moved to London. He developed a close friendship with John Stuart Mill and he had several articles published in his Westminster Review. Mill was very close to Harriet Taylor, who was married to Henry Taylor. In 1833 Harriet negotiated a trial separation from her husband. She then spent six weeks with Mill in Paris. On their return Harriet moved to a house at Walton-on-Thames where John Stuart Mill visited her at weekends. Although Harriet Taylor and Mill claimed they were not having a sexual relationship, their behaviour scandalized their friends. As a result, the couple became socially isolated. However, Carlyle stood by Mill.

It was Mill who suggested that Carlyle should write a book about the French Revolution. He agreed and started the book in September 1834. After completing the first volume he sent it to Mill for his comments. On the night of 6th March 1835, Mill arrived at Carlyle's house with the news that the manuscript had been burnt by mistake at the home of Harriet Taylor. The following day he decided to rewrite volume one again. The three volume book was not finished until 12th January, 1837. Ralph Waldo Emerson arranged for it to be published in America.

John Stuart Mill was active in the campaign for parliamentary reform, and was one of the first to suggest that women should have the same political rights as men. He introduced Carlyle to other political radicals such as Frederick Denison Maurice, Harriet Martineau, James Leigh Hunt, Robert Southey and William Wordsworth.

Mill urged Carlyle to write a pamphlet about parliamentary reform. In March 1838 he wrote: "Unluckily or luckily this notion of writing on the Working Classes has in the interim died away in me; and I have altogether lost it for the present. I have got upon Thuycidides, Johannes Müller, the Crusades, and a whole course of objects connected with my Lectures; sufficient to occupy me abundantly till that fatal time come. We will commit my Discourse on the Working Classes once more to the chapter of chances. I do not know that my train of argument would have specially led me to insist on the question you allude to: but if it had - ! In fact it were a right cheerful thing for me could I get to see that general improvement were going on there; and I think I should in that case wash my hands of Radicalism forever and a day." Carlyle was disturbed by the fact that working-class leaders such as Francis Place disagreed with his approach to the subject. Carlyle wrote: "Francis Place is against me, a man entitled to be heard."

Thomas Carlyle was opposed to Physical Force Chartism. In 1839 he wrote to his friend, Thomas Story Spedding: "What you say of Chartism is the very truth: revenge begotten of ignorance and hunger! We have enough of it here too; the material of it exists I believe in the hearts of all our working population, and would right gladly body itself in any promising shape; but Chartism begins to seem unpromising. What to do with it? Yes, there is the question. Europe has been struggling to give some answer, very audibly since the year 1789! The gallows and the bayonet will do what they can; these altogether failing, we may hope a quite other sort of exorcism will be tried.... Unless gentry, clergy and all manner of washed articulate-speaking men will learn that their position towards the unwashed is contrary to the Law of God, and change it soon, the Law of Man, one has reason to discern, will change it before long, and that in no soft manner.... The fever-fit of Chartism will pass, and other fever-fits; but the thing it means will not pass, till whatsoever of truth and justice lies in the heart of it has been fulfilled; it cannot pass till then, a long date, I fear."

Carlyle met Charles Dickens for the first time in 1840. Carlyle described Dickens as "a fine little fellow... a face of most extreme mobility, which he shuttles about - eyebrows, eyes, mouth and all - in a very singular manner while speaking... a quiet, shrewd-looking, little fellow, who seems to guess pretty well what he is and what others are." The two men became close friends. Dickens told one of his sons that Carlyle was the man "who had influenced him most" and his sister-in-law, that "there was no one for whom he had a higher reverence and admiration".

Carlyle published Chartism in 1841. He argued the immediate answers to poverty and overpopulation was improved education and an expansion of emigration. This position angered many of his radical friends. Other books by Carlyle during this period included On Heroes, Hero Worship and the Heroic in History (1841) and Past and Present (1843).

Carlyle highly disapproved of the industrial revolution. Something he called the "Mechanical Age". In 1842 he described his first journey on a steam locomotive: "I was dreadfully frightened before the train started; in the nervous state I was in, it seemed to me certain that I should faint, from the impossibility of getting the horrid thing stopped."

The literary critic, Richard Hengist Horne, was one of the first people to champion the writing of Carlyle. He argued in A New Spirit of the Age (1844): "Mr. Carlyle... has knocked out his window from the blind wall of his century... We may say, too, that it is a window to the east; and that some men complain of a certain bleakness in the wind which enters in at it; when they should rather congratulate themselves with him on the aspect of the new sun beheld through it, the orient of hope of which he has discovered to their eyes." James Fitzjames Stephen was another supporter of Carlyle: "Regarded as works of art, we should put the best of Mr. Carlyle's writings at the very head of contemporary literature… If he is the most indignant and least cheerful of living writers, he is also one of the wittiest and the most humane." Peter Ackroyd has argued that "there is a strong case to be made for Carlyle being the single most important writer in England during the 1840s"

Andrew Sanders has argued: "What the early Victorians most admired in Carlyle was his ability to disturb them. It was he who seemed to have identified the nature of their restlessness and who had put his finger on the racing pulse of the age.... Carlyle was, and remains, an uncomfortable and disconcerting writer: edgy, prickly, experimental, challenging. He seems, by turns, to be persuasively sophisticated and provocatively direct. He was an outsider to mainstream early Victorian culture in two ways: he had been born in the same year as John Keats and was approaching 40 when he moved to London; he was also, by origin, a poor Scot who had been educated at the University in Edinburgh which still basked in the afterglow of the Scottish Enlightenment."

Carlyle was always concerned about his health but it was Jane who was constantly unwell. She wrote to a friend that she was "suffering from a bad nervous system, keeping me in a state of greater or less physical suffering". Thomas Carlyle, wrote to Catherine Dickens on 24th April, 1843: "We are such a pair of poor sickly creatures here, we have to deny ourselves the pleasure of dining out anywhere at present; and, I may well say with very great reluctance, even that of dining at your house on Saturday, one of the agreeablest dinners that human ingenuity could propose for us!"

Carlyle became a friend of Giuseppe Mazzini, the Italian revolutionary, and they had long discussions on parliamentary reform. Jane Carlyle and Mazzini developed an increasing intimate relationship. In 1846 Jane considered leaving her husband over his platonic relationship with Lady Harriet Baring, the wife of Bingham Baring, 2nd Baron Ashburton, but Mazzini strongly advised her not to.

After the Revolutions of 1848, Carlyle developed reactionary views. In 1850 he wrote a series of twelve pamphlets to be published in monthly installments over the next year. In Latter-Day Pamphlets he attacked democracy as an absurd social ideal and commented that it was absurd that "truth could be discovered by totting up votes". However, at the same time Carlyle criticized hereditary aristocratic leadership as "deadening". Carlyle suggested that people should be ruled by "those most able". Although Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels agreed with Carlyle about aristocratic leadership, they completely rejected his ideas on democracy.

In 1854 Charles Dickens dedicated his book, Hard Times to Carlyle. He also helped Dickens with his book, A Tale of Two Cities (1859). Peter Ackroyd, the author of Dickens (1990), has pointed out: "He (Dickens) had always admired Carlyle's History of the French Revolution, and asked him to recommend suitable books from which he could research the period; in reply Carlyle sent him a cartload of volumes from the London Library. Apparently Dickens read, or at least looked through, them all; it was his aim during the period of composition only to read books of the period itself."

On 21st April 1866, Jane Carlyle went for her regular afternoon carriage ride in Hyde Park. Thomas Carlyle's biographer, Fred Kaplan, argues that "after several circuits of the park the driver, alarmed by Mrs Carlyle's lack of response to his request for further instructions, asked a woman to look into the carriage." According to the witness she "was leaning back in one corner of the carriage, rugs spread over her knees; her eyes were closed, and her upper lip slightly, slightly opened".

Henry Fielding Dickens visited him during this period: "It was my privilege to pay him two or three visits at his house in Cheyne Row after my father's death. I went there for the first time with feelings of awe and some trepidation. This was but natural in the case of a very young man paying a visit to an old man of Carlyle's rare gifts and immense reputation, and one who could be very dour at times. But I found that such feeling was quite uncalled for and he at once put me entirely at my ease. He was gifted with a high sense of humour, and when he laughed he did so heartily, throwing his head back and letting himself go."

Carlyle's early articles inspired social reformers such as John Ruskin, Charles Dickens, John Burns, Tom Mann and William Morris. However, in later life he turned against all political reform and argued against the 1867 Reform Act. He also expressed his admiration for strong leaders. This is illustrated by his six volume History of Frederick the Great (1858-1865) and The Early Kings of Norway (1875). In the last few years of his life, Carlyle's writing was confined to letters to The Times. Thomas Carlyle died at his home at 5 Cheyne Row, Chelsea, on 5th February, 1881.

Thomas Carlyle
Thomas Carlyle

On this day in 1822 educationalist Frances Power Cobbe was born in Dublin.  Frances Power Cobbe, the fifth child and only daughter of Charles Cobbe (1781–1857), an Anglo-Irish landowner, and his wife, Frances Conway (1777–1847), was born in Dublin on 4th December 1822. Cobbe was educated at home, except for two years at a school in Brighton. According to her biographer, Barbara Caine: "Cobbe regarded her schooling, which cost £1000, as an interruption to her education and a complete waste of time. The noise, frivolity, pointless routine, and complete lack of intellectual stimulation contrasted strongly with her pleasurable life at home, spent in close contact with her accomplished and beloved mother."

In 1838 Cobbe was recalled from school when her mother's ill health made it necessary for her to take over the housekeeping. She continued to study and her loss of faith caused considerable distress to her mother, who died in 1847. When she confessed some of her religious doubts to her father she was banished from the house to live with her brother. After several months she was allowed home to act as housekeeper. Cobbe further upset her father by publishing Essay on the Theory of Intuitive Morals (1855).

Cobbe's was left a small legacy when her father died in 1857. The following year she moved to Bristol, where she lived with Mary Carpenter, the Unitarian social reformer and philanthropist, assisting her with her ragged schools and reformatory work. Barbara Caine has pointed out: "This arrangement lasted only a few months. Cobbe desired a more intimate form of friendship than Carpenter was able to offer - and Carpenter's complete lack of interest in creature comforts was intolerable to Cobbe."

She now moved to London where she earned her living by writing for newspapers and journals. In 1861 her articles on the subject of women's rights brought her into contact with leading feminists such as Barbara Bodichon and Lydia Becker. She also became friendly with John Stuart Mill who encouraged her in her writing. Cobbe also became a member of the Married Women's Property Committee. 1867 she joined the London Society for Women's Suffrage.

Frances Power Cobbe published several articles on the legal rights of women in marriage. A pamphlet, Wife Torture, which proposed that wife assault should be made grounds for a legal separation, and this influenced the 1878 Matrimonial Causes Act which gave a wife the right to a separation with maintenance, and with custody of any child under ten years of age.

Olive Banks argued: "Her (Frances Power Cobbe) feminism was in many respects aggressive in its attitude to men. In another of her pamphlets, Criminals, Idiots, Women and Minors published in 1869, she argued that men made women economically dependent so that their authority would go unchallenged. Moreover, it was women's economic dependence which made it possible for men to go on ill-treating their wives.... At the same time some of her views were decidedly conservative. In a later pamphlet, The Duties of Women (1881), she stressed that once a woman was a wife and mother these duties were of paramount importance and other interests must be subordinate. She was also firmly conventional in her attitude to sexual morality and in the same pamphlet, condemned the loose living indulged in by advanced women."

Cobbe was also involved in the campaign against vivisection. In 1870 she advocated strengthening the law on experiments on animals, and over the next few years became one of the leaders of the British anti-vivesection movement. It has been argued that there may have "been an identification on her part between man's brutality to animals and his brutality to women."

In 1884 a legacy enabled Cobbe to retire to Wales with Mary Lloyd, a woman she had lived with since 1860. As her biographer has pointed out: "At no time in her life does she seem to have felt any attraction to a man and according to her own account, no man was ever attracted by her." In 1891 she inherited a quite considerable sum as the residuary legatee of the widow of Richard Vaughan Yates, a devoted anti-vivisectionist.

Frances Power Cobbe, who published her autobiography, The Life of Francis Power Cobbe by Herself (1894) died at Hengwrt on 5 April 1904. She was buried in Llanelltyd churchyard, alongside her beloved Mary Lloyd who had died in 1896.

Frances Power Cobbe
Frances Power Cobbe

On the day in 1828 Robert Jenkinson, Lord Liverpool one of our worst prime ministers in history died. Jenkinson, the eldest son of the first Earl of Liverpool, was born on 7th June, 1770. He was educated at Charterhouse and Christ Church, Cambridge. At the age of twenty Robert was granted the seat of Appleby, a pocket borough owned by Sir James Lowther. Robert Jenkinson was a Tory and in May 1793, he spoke against Earl Grey's attempt to introduce parliamentary reform.

In February 1801, the Prime Minister, Viscount Sidmouth, promoted Jenkinson to the cabinet. Two years later Sidmouth granted Jenkinson the title Lord Hawkesbury in November 1803. When William Pitt replaced Sidmouth as Prime Minister in 1804, Jenkinson became leader of the government in the House of Lords.

On the death of his father in December, 1808, Jenkinson became the second Earl of Liverpool. When Spencer Perceval became prime minister in 1809 he appointed Lord Liverpool as secretary of war and the colonies. Perceval was assassinated in 1812, by a deranged bankrupt who blamed the government for his troubles, and Lord Liverpool was asked to become Britain's new prime minister.

Lord Liverpool was to remain in office for fifteen years. At first Liverpool was a popular prime minister. In 1815 British forces were victorious at the Battle of Waterloo. The abdication of Napoleon and the successful conclusion of the French Wars improved the public standing of Lord Liverpool's government. It was hoped that with the end of the conflict in Europe Lord Liverpool's government would be able to concentrate on introducing the social reforms that were much needed in Britain.

Lord Liverpool disagreed with those who advocated reform. He reacted to the growth in the radical press by increasing the tax on newspapers. Radical journalists such as Robert Carlile and Henry Hetherington, responded by campaigning for an end to all taxes on knowledge.

In 1817 Britain endured an economic recession. Unemployment, a bad harvest and high prices produced riots, demonstrations and a growth in the Hampden Club movement. Lord Liverpool's government reacted by suspending Habeas Corpus for two years.

The economic situation gradually improved and Liverpool hoped that a reduction in taxation would prevent a revival of radicalism when the suspension of Habeas Corpus came to an end in 1818. This was not the case, and the summer of 1819 saw a series of large gatherings in favour of parliamentary reform, culminating in the massive public meeting at Manchester on 16th August 1819.

Lord Liverpool made it clear that he fully supported the action of the magistrates and the Manchester and Salford Yeomanry. Radicals reacted by calling what happened in St. Peter's Fields, the Peterloo Massacre, therefore highlighting the fact that Liverpool's government was now willing to use the same tactics against the British people that it had used against Napoleon and the French Army.

Liverpool's government decided to take action to prevent further large meetings demanding social reform. In November 1819 Parliament was assembled and it quickly passed the Six Acts. In 1822 Liverpool used similar methods to deal with the distress and disaffection in Ireland.

Liverpool found the heavy burden of running a divided country increasingly stressful. Liverpool began to suffer health problems and on 17th February, 1827, he had a stroke. Liverpool was forced to resign and although he lived for nearly two more years, he was rarely conscious. Lord Liverpool died on 4th December, 1828.

George Cruikshank, The Radical Reformer (September, 1819)
George Cruikshank, The Radical Reformer (September, 1819)

On the day in 1863 Frederick Douglass gives a speech at the Anti-Slavery Society in Philadelphia. Douglass argued: "I am one of those who believe that it is the mission of this war to free every slave in the United States. I am one of those who believe that we should consent to no peace which shall not be an Abolition peace. I am, moreover, one of those who believe that the work of the American Anti-Slavery Society will not have been completed until the black man of the South, and the black men of the North, shall have been admitted, fully and completely, into the body politic of America. I look upon slavery as going the way of all the earth. It is the mission of the war to put it down. I know it will be said that I ask you to make the black man a voter in the South. It is said that the coloured man is ignorant, and therefore he shall not vote. In saying this, you lay down a rule for the black man that you apply to no other class of your citizens. If he knows enough to be hanged, he knows enough to vote. If he knows an honest man from a thief, he knows much more than some of our white voters. If he knows enough to take up arms in defence of this Government and bare his breast to the storm of rebel artillery, he knows enough to vote. All I ask, however, in regard to the blacks, is that whatever rule you adopt, whether of intelligence or wealth, as the condition of voting for whites, you shall apply it equally to the black man. Do that, and I am satisfied, and eternal justice is satisfied; liberty, fraternity, equality, are satisfied, and the country will move on harmoniously."

Frederick Douglass, the son of a white man and a black slave, was born in Tukahoe, Maryland, on 7th February, 1817. He never knew his father and was separated from his mother when very young. Douglas lived with his grandmother on a plantation until the age of eight, when he was sent to Hugh Auld in Baltimore. The wife of Auld defied state law by teaching him to read.

When Auld died in 1833 Frederick was returned to his Maryland plantation. In 1838 he escaped to New York City. He later moved to New Bedford, Massachusetts, where he worked as a labourer. After hearing him make a speech at a meeting in 1841, William Lloyd Garrison arranged for Douglass to become an agent and lecturer for the American Anti-Slavery Society. Douglass was a great success in this work and in 1845 the society helped him publish his autobiography, the Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass.

After the publication of his book, Douglass was afraid he might be recaptured by his former owner and so he travelled to Britain where he lectured on slavery. While in Britain he raised the funds needed to establish his own anti-slavery newspaper, the North Star. This created a break with William Lloyd Garrison, who was opposed to a separate, black-owned press.

During the Civil War Douglass, a Radical Republican, tried to persuade President Abraham Lincoln that former slaves should be allowed to join the Union Army. After the war Douglass campaigned for full civil rights for former slaves and was a strong supporter of women's suffrage.

Douglass held several public posts including assistant secretary of the Santo Domingo Commission (1871), marshall of the District of Columbia (1877-1881) and U.S. minister to Haiti (1889-1891). In 1881 he published the Life and Times of Frederick Douglass. Frederick Douglass died in Washington on 20th February, 1895.

Frederick Douglass
Frederick Douglass

On this day in 1864 political activist Selina Coombe was born in Callington. Selina's father was a navvy and was away working on a construction job when he died of typhoid fever. Jane, her two youngest children and her seventy-four year old mother were all left destitute by Charles Cooper's death. There was little work in Cornwall so Jane decided to follow the example of two eldest sons, Richard and Charles, and seek work in the textile mills of northern England.

Jane Coombe, and her two youngest children, Selina and Alfred, settled in Barnoldswick in 1876. Selina and Alfred soon found work in the local textile mill. Selina, who was now twelve years old, spent half the day in the factory and the other half at school. She was employed as a "creeler" and it was her responsibility to make sure there was a constant supply of fresh bobbins for the cotton emerging from the card frames. When Selina reached the age of thirteen she was able to leave school and work full-time in the Barnoldswick Mill. Selina received eight shillings for a fifty-six hour week, and this enabled the family to move out of temporary accommodation and rent a small house close to the mill.

Jane's rheumatism continued to get worse and soon after arriving in Barnoldswick she was restricted to staying at home. Jane Coombe carried on taking in work as a dressmaker but by 1882 her rheumatism became so bad that she could no longer walk. Selina now had to leave Barnoldswick to look after her bed-ridden mother. Luckily, Jane retained the use of her hands and so with a small sewing machined fixed to a board, she still able to make the clothes that were so highly valued in the neighbourhood. To raise extra money Selina took in washing.

When Jane Coombe died in 1889, Selina was able to return to work in the factory. Selina joined the Nelson branch of the Cotton Worker's Union. Although the vast majority of members were women, the union was run by men. Selina thought that was unfair as it influenced the issues that the union became involved in. Selina for example, objected to the system of providing toilets without doors. In 1891 Selina became involved in a trade union dispute where attempts were made to force employers to provide decent toilet facilities. Selina also objected to the way that male overlookers treated young women workers in factory. However, the male leadership of the union showed little interest in these complaints about sexual harassment.

As well as her union activities, Selina also began attending education classes organised by the Women's C0operative Guild in Nelson. By 1889 the General Secretary of the Guild was Margaret Llewelyn Davies, who had recently completed her university studies at Girton College, that had been founded by her aunt, Emily Davies, in 1869.

One of the main objectives of the Women's Cooperative Guild was to encourage women to "discuss matters beyond the narrow confines of their domestic lives." Selina also began reading books about history and was gradually building up her knowledge of politics. She also starting buying medical books so that she would be able to advise fellow workers who were unable to afford a visit to the doctors. Her collection included The Law of Population, a book written by Annie Besant on birth-control.

In 1892 the Independent Labour Party (ILP) was formed in Nelson. Selina was attracted to the party's claims that it supported equal rights for women. It was at the local ILP that Selina met Robert Cooper, a local weaver who was a committed socialist and an advocate of women's suffrage. Cooper had previously worked for the Post Office but had been sacked for his trade union activities.

Selina married Robert Cooper in 1896 and despite giving birth to a couple of children in the first three years of marriage, she continued her involvement in politics. Selina's first child, John Ruskin Cooper,who was named after the writer, John Ruskin, who had most influenced her political ideas, died of bronchitis when he was four months old.

In 1900 Selina Cooper joined the North of England Society for Women's Suffrage. Other members at the time included Esther Roper, Eva Gore-Booth, Emmeline Pankhurst and Christabel Pankhurst. Cooper wrote at the time: "(a) That in the opinion of your petitioners the continued denial of the franchise to women is unjust and inexpedient. (b) In the home, their position is lowered by such an exclusion from the responsibilities of national life. (c) In the factory, their unrepresented condition places the regulation of their work in the hands of men who are often their rivals as well as their fellow workers."

Selina helped organize a petition that was signed by women working in the Lancashire cotton mills. Selina alone collected the signatures of 800 women from local textile factories. By spring 1901, 29,359 women from Lancashire had signed the petition in favour of women's suffrage and Selina was chosen as one of the delegates to present the petition to the House of Commons.

In 1901 the Independent Labour Party asked Selina to stand as a candidate for the forthcoming Poor Law Guardian elections. Although women had been allowed to stand as candidates since the passing of the Municipal Franchise Act in 1869, no working-class woman had ever been elected to one of these bodies. Although the local newspapers campaigned against Selina Cooper, she was elected.

Selina was outvoted on most issues but she did persuade the Board of Guardians to allow elderly people in the workhouse more freedom of movement. Although her duties as a Guardian took up a lot of her time, Selina continued to campaign for women's suffrage. At the National Conference of the Labour Party in 1905, Selina made a speech where she urged the leadership to fully support women's suffrage. The following year she helped form the Nelson and District Suffrage Society.

Selina developed a national reputation for her passionate speeches in favour of women's rights. Millicent Fawcett was a great admirer of Selina Cooper and she was often asked to speak at NUWSS rallies. In 1910 she was chosen to be one of the four women to present the case for women's suffrage to Herbert Asquith, the British Prime Minister.

In 1911 Selina Cooper and Ada Nield Chew became organizers for the NUWSS. According to Elizabeth Crawford, the author of The Suffragette Movement (1999): "She spent the next years travelling around the country; in 1908, for instance, she took part in at least eight by-elections. When she was away from home the NUWSS paid the expense of a housekeeper to care for her daughter, who had been born in 1900."

Cooper influenced the NUWSS decision in April 1912 to support Labour Party candidates in parliamentary by-elections. Emily Davies, a member of the Conservative Party, and Margery Corbett-Ashby, an active supporter of the Liberal Party, resigned from the NUWSS over this decision. However, others like Catherine Osler, resigned from the Women's Liberal Federation in protest against the government's attitude to the suffrage question.

The NUWSS established an Election Fighting Fund (EFF) to support these Labour candidates. The EFF Committee, which administered the fund, included Margaret Ashton, Henry N. Brailsford, Kathleen Courtney, Muriel de la Warr, Millicent Fawcett, Catherine Marshall, Isabella Ford, Laurence Housman, Margory Lees and Ethel Annakin Snowden.

In August 1913 Selina Cooper wrote in The Common Cause: "One reason why I am a convinced suffragist is that the mothers (even as wage earners) take the greater share of the responsibility in the upbringing of their children; therefore, they ought to have the greater means, not the less, to enable them to do justice to the rising generation."

During the First World War Selina worked on several committees organizing relief work in Nelson. This included Nelson's first ever Maternity Centre. Selina took great pleasure in the fact that she personally helped to deliver fifteen babies during this period.

Although willing to help people suffering from the consequences of the war, Selina, who was a pacifist, refused to take part in army recruiting campaigns. Selina was totally opposed to military conscription and after its introduction in 1916, became involved in helping those men who were sent to prison for refusing to fight. In 1917 Selina persuaded over a thousand women in Nelson to take part in a Women's Peace Crusade procession. The meeting ended in a riot and mounted police had to be called in to protect Selina Cooper and Margaret Bondfield, the two main speakers at the meeting.

After the passing of the Qualification of Women Act in 1918 the NUWSS tried to persuade the Labour Party in Nelson to choose Selina Cooper as their candidate in the forthcoming 1918 General Election. However, the Labour Party was very much a male-dominated organisation and no women were selected to fight winnable seats.

Cooper continued to be involved in local politics. She was elected to the town council and became a local magistrate. In the 1930s she played a prominent role in the campaign against fascism. Selina Cooper died at home on 11th November 1946 shortly before her eighty-second birthday.

Selina Cooper
Selina Cooper

On the day in 1935 the German football team give the Nazi salute in game at White Hart Lane.  In December 1935, Strength Through Joy arranged for 10,000 Germans to travel to London to watch their team play England at White Hart Lane. It was a curious choice of venue because within football Spurs are known as “the Jewish club” owing to support from Jewish communities in north London. There were also Jews among the players. On the day of the match a demonstration march converged on White Hart Lane. Leaflets printed in German were handed out by demonstrators and there were some minor scuffles with pro-Nazi sympathisers. Before the game the German players gave the nazi salute and the swastika was flown over the ground. England won the game 3-0. (10)

The German football team give the Nazi salute (4th December, 1935)
The German football team give the Nazi salute (4th December, 1935)

On this day in 1969 civil rights leader Fred Hampton was murdered by the police. Fred Hampton was born in Chicago on 30th August 1948 and grew up in Maywood, a suburb of the city. A bright student, Hampton graduated from Proviso East High School in 1966 before enrolling at Triton Junior College where he studied law.

While a student Hampton became active in the civil rights movement. He joined the National Association for the Advancement of Coloured People (NAACP) and was appointed leader of the Youth Council of the organization's West Suburban branch.

In October 1966 Bobby Seale and Huey Newton formed the Black Panther Party in Oakland, California. Initially formed to protect local communities from police brutality and racism, the Black Panthers eventually developed into a Marxist revolutionary group. The group also ran medical clinics and provided free food to school children. Other important members included Stokely Carmichael, H. Rap Brown, Bobby Hutton and Eldridge Cleaver.

Hampton founded the Chicago chapter of the Black Panther Party in November 1968. He immediately established a community service program. This included the provision of free breakfasts for schoolchildren and a medical clinic that did not charge patients for treatment. Hampton also taught political education classes and instigated a community control of police project.

One of Hampton's greatest achievements was to persuade Chicago's most powerful street gangs to stop fighting against each other. In May 1969 Hampton held a press conference where he announced a nonaggression pact between the gangs and the formation of what he called a "rainbow coalition" (a multiracial alliance of black, Puerto Rican, and poor youths).

Later that year Hampton was arrested and charged with stealing $71 worth of sweets, which he then allegedly gave away to local children. Hampton was initially convicted of the crime but the decision was eventually overturned.

The activities of the Black Panthers in Chicago came to the attention of J. Edgar Hoover and the FBI. Hoover described the Panthers as "the greatest threat to the internal security of the country" and urged the Chicago police to launch an all-out assault on the organization. In 1969 the Panther party headquarters on West Monroe Street was raided three times and over 100 members were arrested.

In the early hours of the 4th December, 1969, the Panther headquarters was raided by the police for the fourth time. The police later claimed that the Panthers opened fire and a shoot-out took place. During the next ten minutes Fred Hampton and Mark Clark were killed. Witnesses claimed that Hampton was wounded in the shoulder and then executed by a shot to the head.

The panthers left alive, including Deborah Johnson, Hampton's girlfriend, who was eight months pregnant at the time, were arrested and charged with attempting to murder the police. Afterwards, ballistic evidence revealed that only one bullet had been fired by the Panthers whereas nearly a hundred came from police guns.

After the resignation of President Richard Nixon, the Senate Intelligence Committee conducted a wide-ranging investigation of America's intelligence services. Frank Church of Idaho, the chairman of the committee, revealed in April, 1976 that William O'Neal, Hampton's bodyguard, was a FBI agent-provocateur who, days before the raid, had delivered an apartment floor-plan to the Bureau with an "X" marking Hampton's bed. Ballistic evidence showed that most bullets during the raid were aimed at Hampton's bedroom.

Fred Hampton
Fred Hampton

On this day in 1975 philosopher Hannah Arendt died. Hannah, the daughter of Paul and Martha Arendt, was born in Hanover on 14th October 1906. Her father was a successful businessman but held progressive political opinions. Paul and Martha were both members of the German Social Democratic Party. Paul had been suffering from syphilis for many years and died in a psychiatric hospital in 1913 when Hannah was only seven. It has been claimed by Derwent May that "those who knew her well could see that Hannah kept a deep sorrow buried inside her."

Hannah's mother had no religious faith but she brought her daughter up to be proud of her Jewish heritage. She had little interest in tradition or ritual. Hannah felt that her dark brown eyes made her look a little different than other children. There was the odd anti-Semitic comment but anti-Semitism was not a serious problem in those years.

Hannah's mother made it clear how she respond to anti-Semitism: "When my teachers made anti-Semitic remarks - mostly not about me, but about other Jewish girls, eastern Jewish students in particular - I was told to get up immediately, leave the classroom, come home, and report everything exactly. Then my mother wrote one of her many registered letters; and for me the matter was completely settled. I had a day off from school, and that was marvelous! But when it came from children, I was not permitted to tell about it at home. That defended yourself against what came from children."

In 1920, when she was thirteen, her mother married again. Her new husband, Martin Beerwald, a successful Jewish businessman, had two teenage daughters (his first wife had died a few years before), Clara, who was now twenty, and Eva who was nineteen. They were all supporters of the Social Democratic Party and Hannah enjoyed the political discussions that took place in the family.

Hannah Arendt was an extremely intelligent teenager and became interested in Greek philosophy. "Headstrong and independent, she displayed a precocious aptitude for the life of the mind. And while she might risk confrontation with a teacher who offended her with an inconsiderate remark - she was briefly expelled for leading a boycott of the teacher's classes."

Hannah's fellow students found her a very attractive young woman. Hannah was described as having "striking looks: thick, dark hair, a long, oval face, and brilliant eyes". One student claimed that she had "lonely eyes" but "starry when she was happy and excited". Another friend described them as "deep, dark, remote pools of inwardness."

Arendt later recalled that life was difficult as a Jew living in Germany: "One thing was certain: if one wanted to avoid all ambiguities of social existence, one had to resign oneself to the fact that to be a Jew meant to belong either to an over privileged upper class or to an underprivileged mass which, in Western and Central Europe, one could belong to only through an intellectual and somewhat artificial solidarity."

At the age of sixteen, Martha Arendt, arranged for her to spend two terms studying in Berlin, where the family had friends. Hannah lived in a student residence and took classes in Latin and Greek at the university, where she was introduced to theology by Romano Guardini, a Christian existentialist, who introduced her to the work of Søren Kierkegaard and Karl Jaspers.

At the age of sixteen, Martha Arendt, arranged for her to spend two terms studying in Berlin, where the family had friends. Hannah lived in a student residence and took classes in Latin and Greek at the university, where she was introduced to theology by Romano Guardini, a Christian existentialist, who introduced her to the work of Søren Kierkegaard and Karl Jaspers.

In the summer of 1925, Hannah relationship with Martin Heidegger began to weaken. In a letter to him she explained the way she was feeling. Derwent May explained: "After her happy childhood, she says that she had become dull and self-preoccupied for a long time. noticing things but not responding to them with any feeling, and finding a protection for herself in this state of mind. Heidegger had released her from this spell, so that the world had become full of colour and fascination and mystery for her again."

Hannah Arendt left University of Marburg and moved to the University of Freiburg, where she studied under Edmund Husserl, a man who had inspired Heidegger's philosophy. Husserl was very impressed with Heidegger recent work and wrote to Erich Jaensch saying. "He is without doubt the most important figure among the rising generation of philosophers... predestined to be a philosopher of great stature, a leader far beyond the confusions and frailties of the present age."

Arendt wrote that Heidegger recognised before anyone else that philosophy was almost dead. It had been formulated into schools of thought and compartmentalized into such disciplines such as logic, ethics, and epistemology, and was not so much taught as "finished off by abysmal boredom." Heidegger did not participate in the "endless chatter about philosophy," rehearsing the teachings of others. He read all the earlier thinkers, and he read them, Arendt said, better than anyone ever had, and perhaps better than anyone ever will again. "His intention was not merely to comprehend or absorb the lessons taught by others, but to interrogate the masters, to think with and against them."

On 9th January, 1926, Arendt visited Heidegger and complained that she felt forgotten. In a letter to Arendt he tried to explain his position: "It is not from indifference, not because external circumstance intruded between us, but because I had to forget and will forget you whenever I withdraw into the final stages of my work. This is not a matter of hours or days, but a process that develops over weeks and months and then subsides. And this withdrawal from everything human and breaking off of all connections is, with regard to creative work, the most magnificent human experience... but with regard to concrete situations, it is the most repugnant thing one can encounter. One's heart is ripped from one's body."

The book Heidegger was working on with Hannah, Being and Time, was published in 1927. Heidegger approached philosophy in a different way. His work was deeply influenced by Charles Darwin that had provided an alternative to Genesis's account of creation and Albert Einstein had reconceptualized the material universe. The ascent of industrialized technology had elevated reason above faith in Western culture. "The various sciences broke away from philosophy, which had for centuries been their home; and all that seemed to be left behind was metaphysics.... Metaphysics came to signify the capacity of the mind to penetrate beyond the physical realm into an extended universe of intangibles filled with questions about the existence of God, the soul, what we are doing when we are thinking, or whether we can be certain that the world as it appears to us is the same as the world as it actually exists."

Hannah Arendt moved to the University of Heidelberg where she became friends with a group of intellectuals that included: Karl Jaspers, Heinrich Blücher, Benno von Wiese, Rudolf Bultmann, Karl Frankenstein, Erich Neumann, Hugo Friedrich, Erwin Loewenson, Hans Jonas and Kurt Blumenfeld, the president of the German Zionist Federation. Jonas said that Hannah had a "genius for friendship". Arendt soon began an affair with Loewenson, a young writer from Berlin. Arendt also had a sexual relationship with Von Wiese, "who was tall, thin, fair-haired, refined, aristocratic, brilliant, and although only a few years older than Hannah, was already professorial and a respected figure in the field of literary history." They were together for two years, "but in the end he claimed to need a wife more dedicated to domesticity." It has also been claimed that he might have been unwilling to marry a Jewish woman.

In January 1929, Hannah Arendt met Günther Stern, whom she had not seen since 1925. Within a month they were living together and in September they were married. A few days before the wedding, Arendt wrote to Heidegger telling him that the continuity of love between the two of them was still the most meaningful thing in her life: "Do not forget how much and how deeply I know that our love has become the blessing of my life. This knowledge cannot be shaken, not even today... I would indeed so like to know - almost tormentingly so, how you are doing, what you are working on, and how Freiburg is treating you."

In the General Election that took place in September 1930, the Nazi Party increased its number of representatives in parliament from 14 to 107. The behaviour of the Nazis became more violent. On one occasion 167 Nazis beat up 57 members of the German Communist Party in the Reichstag. They were then physically thrown out of the building. The stormtroopers also carried out terrible acts of violence against socialists and communists. In one incident in Silesia, a young member of the KPD had his eyes poked out with a billiard cue and was then stabbed to death in front of his mother. Four members of the SA were convicted of the rime. Many people were shocked when Hitler sent a letter of support for the four men and promised to do what he could to get them released.

Hannah Arendt became more interested in politics. Unlike her parents, she had not been active in the German Social Democratic Party. The number of political assassinations perpetrated by right-wing extremists grew rapidly. Arendt responded to the increase in anti-Semitism by saying "if one is attacked as a Jew, one must defend oneself as a Jew, not as a German, not as a world-citizen, not as an upholder of the Rights of Man, or whatever."

According to Arendt: "In a society on the whole hostile to the Jews - and that situation obtained in all countries in which Jews live, down to twentieth century - it is possible to assimilate only by assimilating to anti-Semitism also... And if one really assimilates, taking all the consequences of denial of one's own origin and cutting oneself off from those who have not or have not yet done it, one becomes a scoundrel."

Many of Arendt's friends were Zionists, but she refused to join the movement as she disapproved of their impulse to withdraw into a culture of their own. "Arendt... resented the politics of Jewish leadership, which, having always feared the anti-Semitism of the mob, preferred to play ball with anyone in power rather than forging alliances with other people at the bottom. She rejected the underlying (sometimes unspoken) postulate of the Zionist call for a homeland as antagonistic to pluralism in so far as it proposed a benign ethnic cleansing... The judgment Arendt made was that Jews should not look only for a solution to their own problems, but rather that they should show solidarity with all oppressed people to look for solutions that would promote justice everywhere."

On 4th January, 1933, Adolf Hitler had a meeting with Franz von Papen and decided to work together for a government. It was decided that Hitler would be Chancellor and Von Papen's associates would hold important ministries. "They also agreed to eliminate Social Democrats, Communists, and Jews from political life. Hitler promised to renounce the socialist part of the program, while Von Papen pledged that he would obtain further subsidies from the industrialists for Hitler's use... On 30th January, 1933, with great reluctance, Von Hindenburg named Hitler as Chancellor."

Hannah Arendt had watched these events with great concern but it was the Reichstag Fire on 27th February, 1933, after which Hitler ordered the arrests of leading members of the German Communist Party (KPD) and Social Democratic Party (SDP), that convinced her to leave Nazi Germany: "The burning of the Reichstag, and the illegal arrests that followed the same night. The so-called protective custody... This was an immediate shock for me, and from that moment on I felt responsible. That is, I was no longer of the opinion that one can simply be a bystander."

Arendt's husband, Günther Stern, immediately fled to Paris. She stayed with the idea of helping in some way. Arendt eventually decided to help the German Zionist Federation in collecting materials that would show the extent of anti-Semitism in all aspects of German society. Her research involved risk as the new government had already passed a law that criminalized criticism of the state. Her activities were detected and she was arrested in the spring of 1933 and held at police headquarters for eight days.

Hannah Arendt was able to develop a good relationship with the man who arrested her: "I got out after eight days because I made friends with the official who arrested me. He was a charming fellow! He'd been promoted from the criminal police to a political division... Unfortunately, I had to lie to him. I couldn't let the organization be exposed. I told him tall tales, and he kept saying, 'I got you in here. I shall get you out again. Don't get a lawyer! Jews don't have any money now. Save your money!' Meanwhile the organization had gotten me a lawyer. .. And I sent the lawyer away. Because this man who arrested me had such an open, decent face. I relied on him and thought that here was a much better chance than with some lawyer who himself was afraid."

As soon as Hannah was released she crossed into Czechoslovakia by night and then traveled on to Paris where she rejoined her husband. Although they lived together Hannah wanted a divorce. Stern felt otherwise and she chose not to walk out on him. She later told Heinrich Blücher: "I wanted to dissolve my marriage three years ago - for reasons which I will perhaps tell you someday. My only option. I felt, was passive resistance, termination of all matrimonial duties. It seemed to me that that was my right; but nothing else. Separation would have been the most natural outcome for the other party. Which the other party, however, never thought necessary to opt for."

Hannah Arendt and Heinrich Blücher arrived in New York City by boat from Lisbon in May 1941. A refugee organization arranged for her to spend two months with an American family in Massachusetts. "The couple who took her in were very high-minded and puritanical; the wife allowed no smoking or drinking in the house... Yet Hannah was impressed by the couple, especially their intense feeling for the democratic political rights and responsibilities of American citizens"

Her first task was to learn English. Within a year it was good enough to become a part-time lecturer in European history at Brooklyn College. She also wrote a biweekly column in the German language newspaper, Aufbau (other contributors included Albert Einstein, Thomas Mann and Stefan Zweig). Blücher worked for a while shoveling chemicals in a New Jersey factory, and then as a research assistant for the Committee for National Morale, an organization whose goal was at first to encourage the United States to enter the Second World War. After the bombing of Pearl Harbor it became an openly anti-fascist group.

Hannah Arendt first heard about the extermination of the Jews in Europe in 1943: "We didn't believe this because militarily it was unnecessary and uncalled for. My husband is a former military historian; he understands something about these matters. He said don't be gullible; don't take these stories at face value. They can't go that far! And then a half year we believed it after all, because we had proof... It was really as if an abyss had opened... This ought not to have happened. And I don't mean just the number of victims. I mean the method, the fabrication of corpses and so on - I don't need to go into that. This should not have happened. Something happened there to which we cannot reconcile ourselves. None of us ever can."

However, she explained that if one took seriously what Adolf Hitler had said before the outbreak of the Second World War, the Holocaust could have been predicted. Arendt quoted Hitler as making an announcement to the Reichstag in January, 1939: "I want today once again to make a prophecy: In case the Jewish financiers... succeed once more in hurling the peoples into a world war, the result will be... the annihilation of the Jewish race in Europe." Arendt adds that "translated into non-totalitarian language, this meant: I intend to make war and I intend to kill the Jews of Europe."

In 1946, Karl Jaspers sent Hannah Arendt and Heinrich Blücher a copy of his book The Question of German Guilt. Blücher was not impressed: "A Christianized/pietistic/hypocritical nationalizing piece of twaddle... allowing Germans to continue occupying themselves exclusively with themselves for the noble purpose of self-illumination... serving the purpose of extirpating responsibility... This has always been the function of guilt, beginning with original sin... Jasper's whole ethical purification-babble leads him to solidarity with the German National Community and even with the National Socialists, instead of solidarity with those who have been degraded. It seems that... he wishes to redeem the German people.... The Germans don't have to deliver themselves from guilt, but from disgrace. I don't give a damn if they'll roast in hell someday or not, as long as they're prepared to do something to dry the tears of the degraded and the humiliated... Then we could at least say that they have accepted the responsibility and made good, may the Lord spare their souls."

Arendt told Jaspers that he had overlooked the fact that taking responsibility consists of more than accepting defeat and its consequences, or spiritual purification; the highest priority was not introspection, but action on behalf of victims. "We understand very well that you want to leave here and go to Palestine, but, quite apart from that, you should know that you have every right of citizenship here, that you can count on our total support and that mindful of what Germans have inflicted on the Jewish people, we will, in a future German republic, constitutionally renounce anti-Semitism."

She added: "The Nazi crimes, it seems to me, explode the limits of the law; and that is precisely what constitutes their monstrousness. For these crimes, no punishment is severe enough. It may well be essential to hang Göring, but it is totally inadequate. This is, this guilt, in contrast to all criminal guilt, oversteps and shatters any and all legal systems... I don't know how we will ever get out of it, for the Germans are now burdened with thousands or tens of thousands of people who cannot be adequately punished within the legal system; and we Jews are burdened with millions of innocents, by reason of which every Jew alive today can see himself as innocence personified."

In October 1944, the Zionist Organization of America, the largest and most influential section of the World Zionist Organization, partially in outrage over what had been done to European Jewry and partially in recognition of worldwide shock and sympathy, adopted a resolution calling for a "free and democratic Jewish commonwealth to embrace the whole of Palestine, undivided and undiminished". Arendt complained that there was no mention of the Arabs already living on the land, not even a guarantee that they would receive assurances of minority rights.

Hannah Arendt objected to the "ancient idea of a chosen people with a promised land as a justification for the resolution of conflicts not on the basis of politics, but of theological assertions about claims of God-given superiority, which she saw as a form of racism". She rejected the idea of Theodore Herzl of transporting "the people without a country to the country without a people" on the basis that the million or so Palestinian Arabs were people and that it did not matter whether they were formally constituted as a people in a nation or state.

Arendt predicted that if a Jewish state was to be successful it would need the support of one of the major powers: "The Zionists, if they continue to ignore the Mediterranean peoples and watch out only for the big far away powers, will appear as their tools, the agents of foreign and hostile interests. Jews who know their own history should be aware that such a state of affairs will inevitably lead to a new wave of Jew-hatred; the anti-Semitism of tomorrow will assert that Jews not only profiteered from the presence of foreign big powers in the region but had actually plotted it and hence are guilty of the consequences."

In 1951 Hannah Arendt published her major work, The Origins of Totalitarianism, a "grand synthesis of a decade of thinking about the destruction of the world and civilization into which she had been born". It was dedicated to Heinrich Blücher, who had been her principal thinking partner in this effort, and assisted with the research. Raymond Aron was impressed "by the strength and subtlety of its analyses" and helped establish her prominence as a political thinker and public intellectual. The review in the New York Times said it was "the work of one who has thought as well as suffered".

The book was over a quarter of a million words. In the first two sections of her book, Anti-Semitism and Imperialism, Arendt ranges far and wide through the history in the last 200 to 300 years, identifying events that might be thought to have played that kind of part in the eventual emergence of totalitarianism (the subject of the third section). "Hannah Arendt sets the scene with the nation-states of Europe as they developed at the end of the feudal era. Here was a world of legitimate and limited conflicts: within each nation, conflicts between class and class and between party and party; in Europe as a whole, conflicts between one nation and another."

In the introduction of the book, Hannah Arendt points out that their is a difference between Anti-Semitism and Jew-hatred: "Anti-Semitism, a secular nineteenth-century ideology - which in name, though not in argument, was unknown before the 1870's - and religious Jew-hatred, inspired by the mutually hostile antagonism of two conflicting creeds, are obviously not the same; and even the extent to which the former derives its arguments and emotional appeal from the latter is open to question. The notion of an unbroken continuity of persecutions, expulsions, and massacres from the end of the Roman Empire to the Middle Ages, the modern era, and down to our own time, frequently embellished by the idea that modern Anti-Semitism is no more than a secularized version of popular medieval superstitions, is no less fallacious than the corresponding anti-semitic notion of a Jewish secret society that has ruled, or aspired to rule, the world since antiquity."

Arendt argues that there were several reasons why Anti-Semitism became an important force in the 19th century. "Of all European peoples, the Jews had been the only one without a state of their own and had been, precisely for this reason, so eager and so suitable for alliances with governments and states as such, no matter what these governments or states might represent. On the other hand, the Jews had no political tradition or experience, and were as little aware of the tension between society and state as they were on the obvious risks and power-possibilities of their new role."

Arendt used the example of the S M von Rothschild, a banking enterprise established in 1820 by Amschel Mayer Rothschild in Frankfurt. Branches were established by Salomon Mayer Rothschild (Vienna), Nathan Mayer Rothschild (London), Calmann Mayer Rothschild (Naples) and Jakob Mayer Rothschild (Paris). According to Niall Ferguson, the author, The House of Rothschild (1999), during the 19th century, the Rothschild family possessed the largest private fortune in the world, as well as in modern world history.

Hannah Arendt explained: "The history of the relationship between Jews and governments is rich in examples of how quickly Jewish bankers switched their allegiance from one government to the next even after revolutionary changes. It took the French Rothschilds in 1848 hardly twenty-four hours to transfer their services from the government of Louis Philippe to the new short-lived French Republic and again to Napoleon III. The same process repeated itself, at a slightly slower pace, after the downfall of the Second Empire and the establishment of the Third Republic."

In 1952 both Hannah Arendt and Heinrich Blücher became American citizens. They became friends with a large number of left-wing intellectuals including Dwight MacDonald, Sidney Hook, Randall Jarrell, Mary McCarthy, Philip Rahv, Irving Howe, Clement Greenberg, Frederick Dupee, William Phillips, Harold Rosenberg, Daniel Bell, Delmore Schwartz, William Barrett, Diana Trilling, Lionel Trilling and Alfred Kazin. Most of these figures were associated with the Partisan Review, a journal established by some members of the American Communist Party in 1934 as an alternative to the pro-Stalin New Masses, but by the 1950s was being secretly funded by the Central Intelligence Agency.

The couple became especially close to the poet, Randall Jarrell. He was a regular visitor to their house and he wrote to his wife that they were "a scream together", that sometimes they had "little cheerful mock quarrels and that they shared household duties such as washing dishes, and that "she kids him a little more than he kids her" and "they seem a very happy married couple". Jarrell characterized the relationship between Hannah and Heinrich as a "dual monarchy".

After one of their weekends Jarrell wrote to Hannah that he found Heinrich awe-inspiring because encountering a perso9n even more enthusiastic than himself was like "the second fattest man in the world meeting the fattest." Jarrell committed suicide at the age of fifty-one. He was walking along a country road at night when he jumped in front of a car. Hannah said the last time she saw him, not long before his death, that the laughter in him was almost gone and he was almost ready to admit defeat.

In July 1952, Heinrich Blücher was employed by Bard College, a progressive liberal arts school not far from New York City, as a tutor in the philosophy department. He also became active in opposition to Joseph McCarthy who was attempting to blacklist those working in the arts and education who were former members of the American Communist Party. Blücher failed to persuade the American Committee for Cultural Freedom to pass a resolution condemning what had become known as McCarthyism.

Hannah Arendt, had for over 20 years opposed the totalitarian aspects of communist thought and Soviet practice, but she grew increasingly concerned as McCarthyism and the work of the House Un-American Activities Committee threatened to raise anti-communism into a full-fledged attack on traditional American conceptions of civil liberties. Her experiences in Nazi Germany when "the German intelligentsia in the 1930s left Arendt with little confidence that intellectuals would have the courage or foresight to stand up for fundamental values".

Hannah Arendt published The Human Condition in 1958. Peter Baehr argues that the book contains within it two distinct, if overlapping, narrative levels. "On one level, we are introduced to a quasi-historical sketch of how three fundamental activities - labor, work, and action - have been envisaged, ordered, and reordered from ancient to modern times. These activities, which in sum compose the vita activa, were themselves traditionally seen as inferior to the vita contemplativa - the life of contemplation - until the sixteenth century, when the Protestant Reformation, the scientific revolution, and the emergence of capitalism began the process that reversed this order of estimation."

On May 24th, 1960, Adolf Eichmann, was kidnapped in Argentina and brought to Jerusalem by agents of Mossad, the Israeli intelligence agency. In July 1942, Eichmann joined Reinhard Heydrich, Heinrich Muller and Roland Friesler attended the Wannsee Conference where they discussed the issue of the large number of inmates in Germany's concentration camps. At the meeting it was decided to make the extermination of the Jews a systematically organized operation. Eichmann was placed in charge of what became known as the Final Solution. After this date extermination camps were established in the east that had the capacity to kill large numbers including Belzec (15,000 a day), Sobibor (20,000), Treblinka (25,000) and Majdanek (25,000). In August 1944 Eichmann reported to Himmler that, although the death camps kept no exact statistics, 4 million Jews had died in them and that 2 million more had been shot or killed by mobile units.

When the news was announced, Arendt approached William Shawn, the editor of the New Yorker, suggesting that she be sent to report on the trial. He accepted her offer. She told friends that attending the trial in Jerusalem was an obligation that she felt she owed to her past. She told Karl Jaspers: "You will understand, I think, why I should cover this trial; I missed the Nuremberg Trials, I never saw these people in the flesh, and this is probably my only chance."

Jaspers replied that he felt unsettled by the trial and questioned the legitimacy of Israel's claim to the right to try Eichmann for crimes committed before the existence of the state. Jaspers would have preferred for the international community, perhaps through the United Nations, to create a permanent international criminal court to hear cases involving crimes against humanity. He believed that Eichmann deserved to be executed, but since "what was done to the Jews was done not only to the Jews" but to all humankind, the sentence would best be imposed outside of Israel and in the name of all humanity."

Arendt arrived in Israel on 9th April, 1961. She wrote to Heinrich Blücher about her first impressions of the trial. Eichmann in his glass cage like "a materialization at a séance", the prosecutor, a Galician Jew, immeasurably boring and taking "a blue streak, constantly repeating and contradicting himself like an eager schoolboy who wants to show how much he knows". The defence attorney, "oily, adroit and corrupt," but concise and to the point, "much more clever than the public prosecutor". Only the three judges, all German Jews, "the best of German Jewry," towering high above the proceeding, impressed her favorably, especially the presiding judge, Moshe Landau, who she found "really and truly marvelous - ironic and sarcastic in his forbearing friendliness."

The five-part series in the The New Yorker began on 16th February, 1963. "There is no doubt from the very beginning that it is Judge Landau who sets the tone, and that he is doing his best - his very best - to prevent this trial from becoming a 'show' trial under the direction of the prosecutor, whose love of showmanship is unmistakable. Among the reasons he cannot always succeed is the simple fact that the proceedings happen on a stage before an audience, with the usher’s marvellous shout at the beginning of each session producing the effect of a rising curtain. Clearly, this courtroom is well suited to the show trial that David Ben-Gurion, Prime Minister of Israel, had in mind when he decided to have Eichmann kidnapped in Argentina and brought to the District Court of Jerusalem to answer the charge that he had played a principal role in 'the Final Solution of the Jewish question,' as the Nazis called their plan to exterminate the Jews. And Ben-Gurion, who has rightly been given the title of 'architect of the state,' is the invisible stage manager of the proceedings."

Arendt objected to the message of the trial: "The lesson that the government of Israel derived from the Holocaust... was that the world hates Jews, that security requires Jews to separate themselves from the peoples of the world and become strong so that generations of virile young Israelis would never succumb to a ghetto mentality the way the Jews of the Diaspora... had, debased and walking quietly to their deaths." Arendt believed the Holocaust "owed more to the short-lived triumph of racist totalitarian ideology and the imperfect judgment of Jewish leaders than to any inherent weakness derived from Jewish involvement in the European Enlightenment."

Arendt criticized the motives of the Israeli Prime Minister, David Ben-Gurion for holding the trial in Jerusalem. In a Ben-Gurion's pre-trial pronouncements, he made it clear that the trial was meant to be a demonstration to the world of both how much the Jews had suffered in history, and how determined Israel was to let the world know that they would not let it happen again. He declared that he hoped that the trial would teach young Jews "the most tragic in our history, the most tragic facts in world history", and that "the Jews are not sheep to be slaughtered but a people who can hit back." Hannah disliked the "rhetoric of self-pity and aggressiveness" as being "undignified and inappropriate attitudes for Jews". (176)

In several speeches Ben-Gurion’s attacked Arab countries for protecting Nazi criminals: "That Arab nationalists have been in sympathy with Nazism is notorious, and neither Ben-Gurion nor this trial was needed 'to ferret them out;' they were never in hiding. The trial revealed only that all rumors about Eichmann’s connection with Haj Amin el Husseini, the wartime Mufti of Jerusalem, were unfounded.... Documents produced by the prosecution showed that the Mufti had been in close contact with the German Foreign Office and with Himmler, but this was nothing new. But... his failure to mention present-day West Germany in this context was surprising. Of course, it was reassuring to hear that Israel 'does not hold Adenauer responsible for Hitler,' and that 'for us a decent German, although he belongs to the same nation that twenty years ago helped to murder millions of Jews, is a decent human being.' (There was no mention of decent Arabs.) While the German Federal Republic has not yet recognized the State of Israel - presumably out of fear that the Arab countries might thereupon recognize Ulbricht’s Germany - it has paid seven hundred and thirty-seven million dollars in reparation to Israel during the last ten years; the reparation payments will soon come to an end, and Israel is now trying to arrange with West Germany for a long-term loan."

The impression of Eichmann provided by Hannah Arendt upset a lot of her Jewish readers: "Despite all the efforts of the prosecution, everybody could see that this man (Eichmann) was not a 'monster,' but it was difficult indeed not to suspect that he was a clown. And since this suspicion would have been fatal to the entire enterprise this trial, and was also rather hard to sustain in view of the sufferings he and his like had caused to millions of people, his worst clowneries were hardly noticed and almost never reported.

Arendt was incensed by the hypocrisy of Gideon Hausner, the chief prosecutor, who denounced the infamous Nuremberg Laws of 1935 that prohibited intermarriage and sexual intercourse between Jews and Germans, even though he knew, as she pointed out, that Israel prohibited the intermarriage of Jews and non-Jews. The better-informed journalists were well aware of this irony but did not mention it in their reports. "This, they figured, was not the time to tell the Jews what was wrong with the laws and institutions of their own country."

Arendt complained about the behaviour of Jewish leaders during the Holocaust. For example, Philip von Freudiger, a leader of the Hungarian Jewish community and Rudolf Kastner, the vice president of the Zionist organization in Budapest, were involved in the negotiations with Eichmann in arranged for the transport of Hungarian Jews to the concentration camps, where 99% of them died. She claimed that Freudiger and Kastner had saved 1,684 prominent community leaders by throwing overboard 476,000 innocent victims. However, both Freudiger and Kastner survived and went to live in Palestine and later became prominent figures in Israel.

Arendt wrote that the "role of the Jewish leaders in the destruction of their own people" was documented Raul Hilberg, in his book, The Destruction of the European Jews (1961) in all its "pathetic and sordid detail and is undoubtedly the darkest chapter of the whole dark story." Arendt claimed that Krasner "had sold his soul to the devil". (183) He was later shot dead as he arrived at his Tel Aviv home. The attack was carried out by a three-man squad from a group of veterans from the pre-state right-wing Jewish underground group.

Arendt explained how the Nazi plan to physically exterminate the Jews of Europe was known as the Final Solution. In January 1942, the Wannsee Conference was called to coordinate all efforts to implement the program. "Eichmann was present and was so impressed with the fact that a group of high Nazi officials laid down the program, that he followed orders blindly from then on. The darkest chapter of the story of Jewish extermination was that certain Jewish leaders cooperated with the Nazis.... The Nazis considered some Jews 'first-rate' and granted them the status of Germans, or half-Jews and thousands were exempted from restrictions. This may explain why a number of Jews or half-Jews were Nazi officials: Heydrich, Hans Frank, General Erhard Milch. Long account of the handling of the Final Solution in Hungary. It did not suit the Nazi timetable to exterminate these Jews until 1944, when in less than 2 months, 434,351 were sent to their deaths. When the war went badly for the Germans, the Nazis decided to pursue a more moderate policy in regard to the Jews. Eichmann, however, continued along previously designated lines and went on record to the effect that he did not approve of the new line."

Eichmann pleaded "not guilty in the sense of the indictment," and maintained that "with the killing of the Jews I had nothing to do. I never killed a Jew, or a non-Jew, for that matter - I never killed any human being, I never gave an order to kill; I just did not do it." He did not deny that he had aided and abetted the annihilation of the Jews, and even called this "one of the greatest crimes in the history of humanity", but argued he was only following orders. Arendt did not absolve Eichmann of guilt, nor oppose his execution, "But thought the prosecution case against him was misleading insofar as it portrayed him as a monster, and exaggerated in its assessment of his individual responsibility for the totality of harm done to the Jewish people."

Adolf Eichmann was found guilty on 31st May, 1962, and pleaded that he should be allowed to live. "I have heard the Court's severe verdict of guilty. I see myself disappointed in my hopes for justice. I cannot recognize the verdict of guilty. I understand the demand for atonement for the crimes which were perpetrated against the Jews. The witnesses' statements here in the Court made my limbs go numb once again, just as they went numb when once, acting on orders, I had to look at the atrocities. It was my misfortune to become entangled in these atrocities. But these misdeeds did not happen according to my wishes. It was not my wish to slay people. The guilt for the mass murder is solely that of the political leaders... Once again I would stress that I am guilty of having been obedient, having subordinated myself to my official duties and the obligations of war service and my oath of allegiance and my oath of office, and in addition, once the war started, there was also martial law."

Eichmann was hanged a few minutes past midnight on 1st June 1962. The execution was attended by a small group of officials and journalists. After making a formal declaration that as a non-Christian Nazi he did not believe in the after-life. His last words were reported to be: "Long live Germany. Long live Argentina. Long live Austria. These are the three countries with which I have been most connected and which I will not forget. I greet my wife, my family and my friends. I am ready. We'll meet again soon, as is the fate of all men. I die believing in God."

Some critics accused her of showing no sympathy towards them in the dreadful moral dilemmas they often had to resolve or the agonizing decisions they had to take. This is not true as she addressed this in the first chapter of the book and one of the first articles that she wrote for The New Yorker, when she quoted a question frequently asked in court, "Why did you not revolt?". Arendt commented: "The court received no answer to this cruel and silly question, but one could easily have found an answer had he permitted his imagination to dwell for a few minutes on the fate of those Dutch Jews who in 1941 dared to attack a German security police department.

The articles upset the Israeli government and attempts were made to stop the publication of her book on the trial. Siegfried Moses, wrote a letter on behalf of the Council of Israeli Jews from Germany where he warned that if the book was published it would be a "declaration of war". (191) Moses flew to Switzerland to meet with Arendt where she refused and warned him that "her Jewish critics were going to make the book into a cause célèbre and thus embarrass the Jewish community far beyond anything that she had said or could possibly do."

Eichmann in Jerusalem: A Report on the Banality of Evil was eventually published it caused a storm of protest: "She challenged the legitimacy, morality, and effectiveness of the Jewish leadership past and present. She was not hostile to Israel but was firmly in the loyal opposition, wanting Israel to adopt secular, multicultural values in support of a state based on the equality of all citizens; failing that, she would have liked a government with a less belligerent attitude, committed to working for peace by promoting projects of cooperation between Arabs and Jews."

The book received some good reviews. Hans Morgenthau wrote in the Chicago Tribune that Arendt's work was "superb," "concise," "incisive," and "powerful". The poet Robert Lowell described the book as a masterpiece and called Arendt as a person with a "heroic desire for truth". Dwight Macdonald called it "a masterpiece of historical journalism". Norman Podhoretz admired Arendt's scrupulous account of the almost total unwillingness of the Federal Republic of Germany "to prosecute and mete out adequate punishment to Nazi war criminals still at large and in many cases flourishing." Bruno Bettelheim agreed with Arendt that the Jewish leadership needed to be condemned for co-operating with the Nazis.

The Anti-Defamation League, an international Jewish non-governmental organization established to fight anti-Semitism, distributed a memorandum informing its members of "Arendt's defamatory conception of Jewish participation in the Nazi Holocaust". Leo Mindlin wrote that Arendt was a self-hating Jew who had turned her back on her faith and she was "digging future Jewish graves to the applause of the world's unconverted anti-Semites." A Jewish magazine, Commentary, claimed that "in place of the monstrous Nazi, she (Arendt) had given us the banal Nazi; in place of the Jew as virtuous martyr... the Jew as accomplice in evil; and in place of the confrontation between guilt and innocence... the collaboration of criminal and victim."

Gershom Scholem, a German Jew, who worked at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, wrote to Arendt explaining that in the Jewish tradition there is a concept known as "Ahabath Israel: Love of the Jewish people and that in you, dear Hannah, as in so many intellectuals who come from the German Left, I find little trace of this." She replied: "I have never in my life 'loved' any people or collective - neither the German people, nor the French, nor the American, nor the working class or anything of that sort. I indeed love only my friends and the only kind of love I know of and believe in is the love of persons."

Hannah Arendt
Hannah Arendt