Feminist Legal Studies

, Volume 22, Issue 2, pp 213–216 | Cite as

Hilary Heilbron: Rose Heilbron: The Story of England’s First Woman Judge

Hart Publishing, 2012, ISBN: 9781849464017
  • Rosemary Auchmuty
Review Essay

Hilary Heilbron’s biography of her mother is a moving account of a pioneer woman barrister and judge that could only have been written in the post-feminist twenty-first century. It is both a public biography, detailing Rose Heilbron’s achievments1and their significance in the context of her times, and a private one, giving full attention to the subject’s personality and domestic life, again carefully located in the social conditions of each period. It is very much an insider account, for a daughter can recall the incidents described and recount the family stories, mercifully not too many or too trivial, but sufficient to give readers a sense of the kind of person Rose Heilbron was. It’s also an insider account because Hilary Heilbron is a barrister, with an insider’s knowledge of the arcane rules, customs, structures and personnel of the law and the significance of cases. It is, finally, a feminist account, for the reader is left in no doubt that Rose Heilbron’s life was not a tale...


Gender Equality Family Division Woman Judge Eightieth Birthday Compulsory Retirement 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of LawUniversity of ReadingReadingUK

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