Annie Besant was a renowned writer, orator, and political activist and advocate for peace who fought unceasingly for social justice and human rights and wrote about philosophy and religion. Her work lives on beyond her death, inspiring generations of people who seek peace though equality and justice.
Annie Besant (1847-1933) was an English writer, speaker, social reformer, political activist and theosophist who became one of the most influential women of the 19th century. She was born in London on October 1, 1847 and originally studied to be a schoolteacher. Her involvement in politics began when she joined the National Secular Society advocating for free thinking, anti-clericalism, and atheism. In 1879, Besant turned to theosophy - a blend of Western philosophy and Eastern religious traditions. Besant then adopted Indian citizenship in order to fight against child labor laws as President of Indian National Congress from 1917 to 1919 after spending decades traveling and lecturing around India on spiritualism and education for women. Her famous works include books about Darwin's evolutionary idea and socialism, as well as public speeches about how progress only comes through hard work. She died at 86 years old in 1933 in Adyar, near Chennai.