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Suffragette literature

Books by women
Suffragette literature
Books compiled by women
Books translated by women
Books for women
Books about women
Biographies of women
On women's education
Owned by women
Illustrated by women
Published by women

Despard, Charlotte. Women in the Nation. London: Women's Freedom League, [1909] Sp Coll f255 

Charlotte Despard (1844-1939) was president of the Women's Freedom League, an organisation which  advocated civil disobedience and militancy that broke no "moral law". Despard was instrumental in a number of Suffragette activities such as the scheme whereby women refused to give their information to the April 1911 census. Despard was also one of the first women to stand   as a candidate in a general election, standing as a candidate for the Labour Party in Battersea (North in 1918.) Despard published  a number of publications relating to women's enfranchisement during her lifetime, and included in this is Women in the Nation. This leaflet examines the position of women in society, and their rights of citizenship. Despard argues that women are citizens who "belong to the nation" and need to be involved in politics, especially "when politics are entering upon our home life"  referring to state interest in the education and welfare of children.

Gore-Booth, Eva. Women's right to work. Manchester: William Morris Press, 19??. Sp Coll 1326 

Mythical poet and radical suffragist, Eva Gore-Booth (1870-1926) played an important role in the battle for women's suffrage. Gore-Booth was one of the founder members of  the Lancashire and Cheshire Women's Textile Workers Representation Committee and the Manchester and Salford Women's Trade and Labour Council. Additionally, Gore-Booth published propaganda leaflets and articles in feminist and trade union journals, and edited the Women's Labour News. In this particular publication Gore-Booth addresses the issue of women's work, examining issues of women working after 8pm and other restrictions on women's employment, such as the bizarre application of the Factory and Workshops Act to the work of florists' assistants.

Pethick Lawrence, Emmeline. The meaning of the women's movement.  19??.  Sp Coll 1333 

Emmeline Pethick Lawrence (1867-1954) was an instrumental figure in the Suffragette movement, along with her husband  Frederick William Pethick Lawrence (1871-1961). Emmeline was arrested several times, the first occasion being for trying to make a speech in the lobby of the House of Commons. Both disagreed with WSPU (Women's Social and Political Union) policies of window smashing and arson, which eventually led to them being expelled from the organisation. The couple were also joint editors of the Votes for Women journal, the periodical of the WSPU. Emmeline Pethick Lawrence published several works, including The meaning of the women's environment. This pamphlet is a transcription of a speech given by Pethick Lawrence, in which she looks to answer the fundamental question of "What does this Women's Movement mean and what is its significance in our modern life?"

Pankhurst, Emmeline. The importance of the vote. [London: 1908] Sp Coll 1331

Emmeline Pankhurst (1858-1928)  founded the WSPU in 1903, its aim being the "immediate enfranchisement" of women. The WSPU adopted militant tactics, beginning in Manchester in 1905 by interrupting a meeting addressed by Winston Churchill. Notably, the notion of militant action has changed since the day of the Suffragettes. Then, actions such as an attempt to ask MP's questions was regarded as militant. Emmeline Pankhurst was arrested many times for her involvement in these militant actions, and undertook hunger strikes which often resulted in force feeding and the use of the "Cat and Mouse" act. This pamphlet examines what the vote means to women, what the vote would do for women and what being deprived of the vote has caused women to suffer.

Lytton, Lady Constance. No votes for women, a reply to some anti-suffrage publications. London : Fifield, 1910. Sp Coll 1330 

Member and organiser of the WSPU, Lady Lytton (1869-1923) was imprisoned several times for her part in the suffrage movement, including throwing a stone at Lloyd Georges car. During her imprisonment Lytton felt that she was given preferential treatment due to her family background, as she was the second daughter of the Earl of Lytton, Viceroy of India and her mother was lady in waiting to Queen Victoria. Ultimately, to counteract this treatment, Lady Lytton disguised herself which resulted in her being force fed whilst on a hunger strike. Lady Lytton published a number of volumes in her lifetime including Prisons and prisoners: experiences of a Suffragette published in 1914. The pamphlet No votes for women is a reply to anti-suffrage publications. The publication refutes a number of arguments against women's suffrage, such as women suffer form physical disabilities and thereby cannot fight and that women suffer from intellectual disability and are less mentally capable than men and so should not be allowed to participate "in the directions of great affairs of the state."

Beginning of The importance of the vote

Masefield, John. My faith in woman suffrage. [London] The Women's Press, 1910. Sp Coll 1329 

This is the text of a speech made by Masefield to an audience of women at the Queen's Hall in 1910. The theme of this speech is that the whole national life could be raised only through the joint endeavor of men and women. Masefield states "I blush for what our grand children will say of the men of my generation."