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By Julia Bush

British ladies who resisted their very own enfranchisement have been ridiculed through the suffragists and feature for the reason that been overlooked via historians. but those girls, including the thousands whose indifference bolstered the competition case, claimed to shape a majority of the feminine public at the eve of the 1st international warfare. by way of 1914 the prepared "antis" rivaled the suffragists in numbers, notwithstanding now not by way of publicity-seeking activism. The nationwide League for Opposing Women's Suffrage used to be ruled by means of the self-consciously masculine management of Lord Cromer and Lord Curzon, but additionally seriously established upon a magnificent cadre of ladies leaders and a regularly girl membership.

Women opposed to the Vote appears at 3 overlapping teams of girls: maternal reformers, girls writers and imperialist girls. those girls are then into motion as campaigners of their personal correct, in addition to supporters of anti-suffrage males. Collaboration among the sexes used to be now not constantly hassle-free, even inside a flow devoted to separate and complementary gender roles. because the anti-suffrage ladies pursued their very own diverse social and political agendas, they validated their affinity with the mainstream social conservatism of the British women's flow. The rediscovered background of woman anti-suffragism offers new views at the campaigns either for and opposed to the vote. It additionally makes a tremendous contribution to the broader background of women's social and political activism in overdue 19th century and early 20th century Britain.

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