Caroline Rémy de Guebhard

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Caroline Rémy de Guebhard
Caroline Rémy, portrait by Pierre-Auguste Renoir
Caroline Rémy, portrait by Pierre-Auguste Renoir
Born(1855-04-27)April 27, 1855
DiedApril 24, 1929(1929-04-24) (aged 73)
Pen nameSéverine

Caroline Rémy de Guebhard (April 27, 1855 – April 24, 1929) was a French anarchist, journalist, and feminist best known under the pen name Séverine.

Around 1880, Caroline Rémy became involved with Jules Vallès' socialist publication, Cri du Peuple. Vallès eventually gave her control over the newspaper due to his poor health. A growing militant in her views, she became friends with fellow journalist and feminist, Marguerite Durand but following a confrontation with the Marxist Jules Guesde she left the newspaper in 1888. She continued writing for other papers in which she promoted women's emancipation and denounced social injustices of all kinds including the Dreyfus affair. In 1897, she began writing for Durand's feminist daily newspaper La Fronde.

A staunch leftist, Rémy backed some of the anarchist causes including the defense of Germaine Berton and participated in the 1927 efforts to save Sacco and Vanzetti. She supported the Russian Revolution of 1917 and in 1921 she joined the French Communist Party; however, only a few years later, she quit the party in order to maintain her membership in the Human Rights League.

Bernard Lecache, a founding member of the Committee of Honor of International League Against Anti-Semitism (LICA), (now International League Against Racism and Anti-Semitism (LICRA)), wrote her biography. Her portrait was painted by Pierre-Auguste Renoir in 1885 and now hangs in the National Gallery of Art in Washington, DC. [[ Caroline Rémy died in 1929 at her home in Pierrefonds, Oise department in the Picardy region of France. Some of her papers can be found in the Bibliothèque Marguerite Durand in Paris.

Shortly before her death, she took part in the campaign to support the candidacy of Dr. Albert Besson, who was elected councilor of the district Saint-Fargeau, general counselor of the Seine then deputy chairman of the Council of Paris and the general council of the Seine. In 1933, in memory of Séverine, he had the Paris council vote for the attribution of the name "Séverine" to the square created at his initiative Porte de Bagnolet (Paris 20).

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