Radcliffe project explores ongoing struggle for suffrage

Tuesday, August 18, 2020 - 15:00 in Psychology & Sociology

The ratification of the 19th Amendment in 1920, granting women suffrage, was clearly a milestone in U.S. legal history. Many historians, however, would argue that transformative social change is the result of a continuous struggle rather than a single event. Enter the Radcliffe Institute’s “Long 19th Amendment Project,” which is playing a leading role nationally in reframing our understanding of the history of the suffrage centennial and its meaning, with support from the Mellon Foundation. This is fitting, because it was alumna and suffragist Maud Wood Park’s donation of her papers that formed the core of what would one day become Radcliffe’s Schlesinger Library. The project invites us to look beyond the accepted histories of the suffrage movement — beginning with the Seneca Falls convention in 1848, which is seen as the genesis of the movement even though women’s activism had actually begun much earlier. It also looks beyond celebrations of the elite white...

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