Jane Adams

Born in 1860, Jane Addams was an American public philosopher, activist, reformer and pacifist. Graduated in 1881 from the Rockford Female Seminar, she founded, with Ellen Gates Starr, the Hull House in Chicago, in 1889. This latter was part of the “settlement movement”, started in the 1880’s in England and the United States, that was intended to get rich and poor people to come together in the society, by getting volunteer middle-class “settlement workers” to live along and help their less-fortunate neighbors. Hull House offered many facilities and services, amongst which college-level courses. As a reformer, Addams contributed to the creation of the first juvenile-court law, the eight-hours work-a-day for women, and the development of rights for workers. She supported feminism, woman suffrage and justice for immigrants and the black community. She also played a key role in the creation of the Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom and of the American Civil Liberties Union. Addams‘ work was acknowledged in 1931, when she received the Nobel Peace Prize.

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