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Louise Michel (1830–1905)

Author of The Red Virgin : Memoirs of Louise Michel

Includes the names: Louise Michel, Louise Michell

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Louise Michel sometimes used the pseudonym Clémence. She was nicknamed the Red Virgin of Montmartre for her revolutionary politics and participation in the Paris Commune of 1871. She fought on the barricades and treated the wounded. Following the fall of the Commune, she was tried by the French government and sentenced to deportation for life. In 1873, she was sent to the colony of New Caledonia in the southwest Pacific. There she was eventually allowed to work as a teacher of the indigenous people and the children of colonists. In 1880, she received a pardon and returned to Paris. She published political articles and essays, worked on relief efforts for poor and striking workers, and gave public lectures throughout Europe, advocating revolution. She was arrested again and sentenced to six years of solitary confinement. Following her release, she again travelled around France giving lectures on behalf of anarchism. Many of her lectures and writings have been collected and republished in book form.
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