Mary Kennedy obituary


My mom, Mary Kennedy, who has died aged 91, was a feminist, historian and educator and a lifelong advocate for ladies’s greater training and studying alternatives.

She started her profession as a secretary for the International Workplace after which as a researcher on the Financial institution of London and South America in the course of the Fifties. Immersing herself in Latin American historical past and tradition led to a quick stint as a contract journalist, writing for publications together with the South American Financial Publication and the New Statesman, and about ladies’s lives in Mexico for the BBC World Service.

Researching Latin America introduced her again into academia, first at Ealing Tech (now Ealing Artwork Faculty) in London, the place she started her profession as a lecturer and scholar of Latin American historical past within the Seventies. Following the Nationwide Ladies’s Liberation Convention in 1970, feminism turned a core a part of her life and work. She was additionally concerned with the London Historical past Workshop and the Islington Historical past Workshop.

She went on to work in grownup training instructing ladies’s research within the Seventies, first for the Staff Academic Affiliation after which transferring to the College of London’s division of extramural research in 1978. After that division merged with Birkbeck Faculty in 1988 she continued her profession there, the place she was a senior lecturer in ladies’s research and social historical past and helped to develop the MA programme in ladies’s research.

She printed quite a few papers on topics together with world revolutions, communes, childcare and girls’s sexuality, in addition to the books Revolution in Perspective: Individuals Looking for Change (1972) and New Futures: Altering Ladies’s Schooling (1985, with Mary Hughes). In 2011 she was interviewed as a part of the British Library’s challenge Sisterhood and After: an oral historical past of the ladies’s liberation motion. Her papers are held by the Bishopsgate Institute.

Mary was born in Axminster, Devon, to John Charlesworth, a handyman, and Eileen (nee Langran), a housekeeper. She grew up within the village of Hawkchurch and was educated at St Mary’s, Shaftesbury convent college earlier than attending Royal Holloway Faculty, College of London, finding out historical past.

She met Invoice Kennedy, an artist, in London in 1966 via mutual mates, and so they married in 1967. After her retirement in 1993, she divided her time between London and the Dordogne, and was a trustee of the Maya Centre and a member of the chief committee of the Ladies’s Library from 2014.

Invoice died in 2008. Mary is survived by me and her grandson, Gabriel.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here