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The rural warCaptain Swing and the politics of protest$
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Carl J. Griffin

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780719086267

Published to Manchester Scholarship Online: May 2013

DOI: 10.7228/manchester/9780719086267.001.0001

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The gender politics of Swing

The gender politics of Swing

Chapter:
(p.211) 8 The gender politics of Swing
Source:
The rural war
Author(s):

Carl J. Griffin

Publisher:
Manchester University Press
DOI:10.7228/manchester/9780719086267.003.0009

This chapter considers the ways in which Swing was informed by complex gender politics, attacking ‘female’ threshing machines and reasserting an embattled labouring masculinity. While most Swing groups deliberately excluded women, many women still had legitimate grievances, and thus occasionally did join wages and poor relief protests or acted as lone incendiarists and threatening letter writers. All else being equal, it is probable that many scores were settled by women during Swing, and that many acts of psychological release were performed. Either way, for a movement whose public face was almost exclusively male, Swing was richly written through with an extraordinarily complex gender politics.

Keywords:   gender politics, threshing machines, poor relief protests, women's work

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