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The Weight of Their VotesSouthern Women and Political Leverage in the 1920s$
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Lorraine Gates Schuyler

Print publication date: 2006

Print ISBN-13: 9780807830666

Published to North Carolina Scholarship Online: September 2014

DOI: 10.5149/9780807876695_schuyler

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(p.1) Introduction
The Weight of Their Votes

Lorraine Gates Schuyler

University of North Carolina Press

This chapter, which explores the effects of woman suffrage in the repressive Jim Crow South by assessing the significance of two fierce struggles for the right to vote, notes that in 1848, the pioneering women who gathered at Seneca Falls insisted that they too were deserving of ballots, like white men. It explains that in the ensuing battle for woman suffrage, activists marched in the streets, picketed outside the White House, endured jail sentences, and staged hunger strikes to secure their full participation in the American polity. The chapter notes that their battle for suffrage rights lasted more than seventy years, reexamines the meaning of the Nineteenth Amendment, explores the connections between electoral mobilization and political power. It looks at female agency and activism through one of the most prized tools of American democracy: the vote.

Keywords:   woman suffrage, Jim Crow South, vote, Seneca Falls, ballots, white men, American polity, Nineteenth Amendment

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