Selling Suffrage Consumer Culture and Votes for Women
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Description: Margaret Finnegan's pathbreaking study of woman suffrage from the 1850s to the Nineteenth Amendment in 1920 reveals how activists came to identify with consumer culture and employ its methods of publicity to win popular support through carefully crafted images of enfranchised women as "personable, likable, and modern." Drawing on organization records, suffragists' papers and memoirs, and newspapers and magazines, Finnegan shows how women found it in their political interest to ally themselves with the rise of consumer culture--but the cost of this alliance was a concession of possibilities for social reform. When manufacturers and department stores made consumption central to middle-class life, suffragists made an argument for the ballot by comparing good voters to prudent comparison shoppers. Through suffrage commodities such as newspapers, sunflower badges, Kewpie dolls, and "Womanalls" (overalls for the modern woman), as well as pantomimes staged on the steps of the federal Treasury building, fashionable window displays, and other devices, "Votes for Women" entered public space and the marketplace. Together these activities and commodities helped suffragists claim legitimacy in a consumer capitalist society.Imaginatively interweaving cultural and political history, Selling Suffrage is a revealing look at how the growth of consumerism influenced women's self-identity.
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All the information you need in one place! Each Study Brief is a summary of one specific subject; facts, figures, and explanations to help you learn faster.
List price: $34.00
Copyright year: 1999
Publisher: Columbia University Press
Publication date: 1/11/1999
Size: 5.75" wide x 9.25" long x 0.50" tall
Margaret Finnegan received a Ph.D. in history from UCLA. She has taught at various universities, and lives and writes in Los Angeles.
|List of Illustrations|
|Consumer Culture and Woman Suffrage Ideology|
|"So Much Color and Dash": Woman Suffragists, Public Space, and Commercial Culture|
|On Stage: Personality, the Performing Self, and the Represention of Woman Suffragists|
|From Sunflower Badges to Kewpie Dolls: Woman Suffrage Commodities and the Embrace of Consumer Capitalism|
|Selling Suffrage News: Consumerism and The Woman's Journal|
|Ringing in a New Day|