Nicola Sturgeon est la première femme à avoir été nommée à la tête du Parti nationaliste écossais et à avoir été élue Première ministre d’Ecosse en 2014. A 16 ans, elle s’engage en politique. Depuis, elle milite pour l’indépendance de son pays et pour plus d’autonomie face au gouvernement britannique. Native de la ville ouvrière d’Irvine, Nicola Sturgeon est une figure politique proche du peuple et de ses intérêts. Retour sur son parcours. A young activist
Nicola Sturgeon was born in Irvine, Scotland on July 19, 1970. As a teenager, she was a pop music fan. She would sing along to Wham and the Blow Monkeys, especially when they were lambasting the Conservative PM, Margaret Thatcher. In her working-class town, Nicola, the daughter of an electrician and a nurse, witnessed the ravages of the austerity of Thatcherism of the 1980s. She was a timorous but good student, even skipping school to demonstrate against factory closures and nuclear power.
activist militant(-e) / to lambast fustiger / PM = Prime Minister / working-class ouvrier, populaire / nurse infirmier(ère) / to witness être témoin de / to skip ici, «sécher» / to demonstrate manifester / factory usine / closure fermeture.
Enrolment in the SNP
At the age of 16, she was recruited by the dustiest of movements at that time: The Scottish National Party. She saw the SNP, considered old-fashioned, as the only party capable of standing up to the Conservatives who dictated their laws from London. And, for her, independence was the answer. Sturgeon continued her party involvement when she arrived at the University of Glasgow in 1989 to study Law. Then, she met her political mentor, Alex Salmond, in 1990.
enrolment inscription, engagement / dusty poussiéreux, ici vieux, d’un autre âge / old-fashioned vieux jeu, d’un autre temps / to stand, stood, stood up to s’opposer à, affronter, résister à / involvement implication, engagement.
A politicians’ family
She met her future husband, Peter Murrell, the current Director General of the SNP at a meeting. He was the ideal son-in-law for Joan, Nicola Sturgeon’s mother, a pro-independence activist and local politician herself.
A desire for autonomy
In 1999, she was elected to the first Scottish Parliament. Eight years later, the First Minister, Alex Salmond, made her his right-hand woman. Propelled to the position of First Minister in 2014, she vowed to change the minds of the Scots. She rolled out social policies, transformed her oil-rich region into a champion of renewable energies and took advantage of Brexit to reawaken the desire for autonomy, convinced that Scotland had a place in Europe.
right-hand ici, bras droit / to propel propulser / position poste / to vow jurer, promettre, s’engager à / mind mentalité / to roll out déployer, mettre en oeuvre / policy mesure (politique) / champion défenseur, avocat / to reawaken réveiller, faire renaître.
Nicola Sturgeon is used to sexist clichés. The tabloids have mocked her for her poor cooking skills and for the fact that she has no children. At the time, the press also said she never smiled – something rarely said of male politicians. She was called “a nippy sweetie” – Glasgow slang for a sharp-mannered woman.
tabloid (publication) à sensation / poor mauvais, médiocre / skill aptitude, compétence / slang argot / sharpmannered ici, cassant(e).
The covid-19 crisis
The Covid-19 pandemic has made her popular. Unlike Boris Johnson, she quickly grasped the scale of the situation, communicating daily on her measures and apologising for the excessive number of deaths in retirement homes.
to grasp saisir, comprendre, appréhender / scale ampleur, importance / to apologise présenter des excuses / retirement home maison de retraite.