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Mystics Against Empire: Margaret and James Cousins, 1873-1956
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Mystics Against Empire: Margaret and James Cousins, 1873-1956 (Hardback)

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This book traces the careers of Margaret and James Cousins, mystical revolutionaries who were key players in some of the most important cultural and political events of the first half of the twentieth century. Margaret Cousins (1878-1954), was a leading suffragist dynamo and radical feminist revolutionary presence in the Irish cultural revival. Her husband, James Cousins (1873-1956), was a writer in the circle of Yeats and Joyce and a life-long nationalist and cosmopolitan activist. As suffragists in Ireland and England, the Cousins helped shape the feminist movement in both places, especially in their efforts to tie it to the international labour movement. Migrating to India during the first world war, for the next four decades they were at the helm of the feminist, musical, literary and educational wings of the Indian freedom movement alongside, and sometimes against, Gandhi. Few people were so intimately and so passionately involved in both movements of Irish and Indian decolonization and this dual biography demonstrates the intricate interconnectedness of a number of disparate histories: of empire; feminism; religion; gender and sexuality; culture; and anti-colonial nationalism.

Catherine Candy is Associate Professor of British Imperial History at the University of New Orleans, USA.

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