Partner Anita Augspurg, buried together
Kaulbachstraße 12, 80539 München, Germany
Friedhof Fluntern, 8044 Zürich, Switzerland
Lida Gustava Heymann (15 March 1868 – 31 July 1943) was a German feminist, pacifist and women's rights activist. A particularly evocative photograph, taken at the Zürich WILPF Congress in 1919, gives us Charlotte Despard, always eccentrically dressed in a black lace mantilla, standing between the German feminist Lida Heymann, who wears a masculine hat, and her lover, the radical lawyer and Germany’s first woman judge, Anita Augspurg, whose attire is even more manly. Heymann always recalled her first sight of the woman who would become her lover for 40 years, a figure in brown velvet with a powerful voice and sparkling, clear-sighted eyes standing at a lectern.
Together with her partner Anita Augspurg she was one of the most prominent figures in the bourgeois women's movement. She was, among other things, in the forefront of the Verband Fortschrittlicher Frauenvereine ((in German) "Association of Women's Groups").
She co-founded the abolitionist movement in Germany. (Translator's note: "Abolitionist" in this context refers to abolition of prostitution. The German state allowed, and regulated, prostitution at the time.) In this role she came into conflict with the law as she protested about the treatment of prostitutes and called for the abolition of state regulation for them. Heymann wanted to "help women free themselves from male domination." With her vast inheritance she established a women's centre, offering meals, a crèche and counselling. She also founded a co-educational high school and professional associations for female clerks and theatre workers.
In 1902 she jointly founded (with Anita Augspurg) the first German Verein für Frauenstimmrecht ((in German) "Society for Women's Suffrage"). Together with Augspurg, she published the newspaper Frau im Staat ((in German) "Women in the State") from 1919 to 1933. This newspaper presented the pacifist, feminist and democratic positions on various subjects.
In 1923 Heymann and Augspurg called for the Austrian Adolf Hitler to be expelled from Germany. When Hitler seized power in 1933, both were out of the country; they did not return. Their property was confiscated and they settled in Switzerland. Heymann died in 1943 and was buried in Fluntern cemetery.
Anita Augspurg (left), Charlotte Despard (centre) and Lida Heymann (right) at the WILPF Congress in Zürich, 1919
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