Thursday, July 23, 2009

Fast, Who Was An Ancient Hunger-striker?

I saw this at TLS:

One hundred years ago this month, Marion Wallace-Dunlop (1864–1942) became the first modern hunger striker. She came to her prison cell as a militant suffragette, but also as a talented artist intent on challenging contemporary images of women. After she had fasted for ninety-one hours in London’s Holloway Prison, the Home Office ordered her unconditional release on July 8, 1909, as her health, already weak, began to fail. Her strike influenced those of Mohandas Gandhi, James Connolly and others who followed her example.

Modern, eh?

And ancient?

15 Then Esther bade them return answer unto Mordecai: 16 'Go, gather together all the Jews that are present in Shushan, and fast ye for me, and neither eat nor drink three days, night or day; I also and my maidens will fast in like manner; and so will I go in unto the king, which is not according to the law; and if I perish, I perish.' 17 So Mordecai went his way, and did according to all that Esther had commanded him.

Book of Esther, Chapter 4

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