Arts, Celtic Studies and Social Sciences

Visualising Votes for Women

Visualising Votes for Women: The Struggle for Female Enfranchisement in Press Cartoons, 1906-1918

This illustrated talk by Professor Chris Williams, Head of CACSSS, investigates how newspaper and magazine cartoonists represented and responded to the struggle to enfranchise women in the period leading up to the Representation of the People Act 1918. Political cartoons shed light not only on the opinions of the cartoonists themselves, and on the editorial lines taken by their employers, but also on wider public attitudes. They reveal something of the understanding of, for example, acts of suffragette militancy, or the endeavours made by sympathetic politicians to find legislative solutions to existing inequalities. It was the view of Liberal MP Hilaire Belloc, speaking in 1910, that ‘ … the great weight of popular opinion is utterly against [women’s suffrage]. In the songs of the populace, in their caricatures, in their jokes, in their whole attitude towards the movement, the populace dislike it.’ Based on an assessment of more than 100 contemporary cartoons, this paper challenges that view.

Category: Public Lectures and Seminars: Arts Celtic Studies and Social Sciences
Time: 1-2 p.m.
Location: West Wing 5, Main Quad, UCC
Target Audience: All welcome
Admission Price: € Free
Contact: Anne-Marie Curtin

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