Maud Pember Reeves

Maud Pember Reeves
Maud Pember Reeves, date unknown

Maud Pember Reeves (24 December 1865 - 13 September 1953) (born Magdalene Stuart Robison) was a feminist, writer and member of the Fabian Society. She spent most of her life in New Zealand and Britain.

She was born in Mudgee, New South Wales, Australia, to bank manager William Smoult Robison; the family moved to Christchurch, New Zealand in 1868. In 1885 she married the journalist and politician William Pember Reeves and became interested in socialism and the suffragette movements. (See also first wave feminism.)

In 1896 the family moved to London after William's appointment as Agent-General, the representative of New Zealand government within the British Empire. There, the couple became friends with a number of left-wing intellectuals, such as George Bernard Shaw, H. G. Wells, and Sidney and Beatrice Webb. Maud joined the Fabian Society, a precursor to the Labour Party, which promoted social reform.

In 1913 Maud published a survey of poverty in Lambeth, a poor borough in South London, called Round About a Pound a Week, a work that was reprinted in 2008 by Persephone Books and remains relevant today.[1] During the First World War she served on a government committee concerned with women's issues.

William and Maud had three children. Their son, Fabian Pember Reeves, was killed in the First World War, and one of their daughters, Amber Reeves, was a noted feminist writer.


  1. ^ Round About A Pound A Week - Reeves
  • Dictionary of New Zealand Biography: [1]
  • Fry, Ruth. Maud and Amber: a New Zealand Mother and Daughter and the Women’s Cause, 1865-1981. Christchurch, NZ: Canterbury University Press, 1992. ISBN 0908812108
  • Reeves, M.S. Round About a Pound a Week. New York: Garland Pub., 1980. ISBN 0824001192
  • Lambeth notebooks used by Maud Pember Reeves as the raw material for "Round about a pound a week"
    • Some of the text is available here

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