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The Political Writings of Eva Gore-Booth$
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Sonja Tiernan

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780719088742

Published to Manchester Scholarship Online: January 2016

DOI: 10.7228/manchester/9780719088742.001.0001

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Pacifism and conscientious objection during the First World War

Pacifism and conscientious objection during the First World War

(p.131) Part II Pacifism and conscientious objection during the First World War (p.132)
The Political Writings of Eva Gore-Booth
Sonja Tiernan
Manchester University Press

Days after war was declared in August 1914 the Home Secretary announced an amnesty releasing all suffragettes imprisoned for anti-government and militant activities. Mainstream suffrage organisations suspended their campaign for the vote, joining forces with the government in support of the British war effort. The National Union of Women’s Suffrage Societies, under the leadership of Millicent Fawcett, proved their commitment to the British war effort by establishing support facilities such as Red Cross centres and hospital units at the front. Leaders of the Women’s Social and Political Union toured England on a recruitment campaign actively promoting the introduction of enforced conscription to military service. Gore-Booth turned her efforts to the anti-conscription movement in England. Adopting a pacifist stance in England at this time was a particularly defiant act. Gore-Booth was at risk of being labelled unpatriotic or even worse viewed as a German sympathiser in the midst of anti-German propaganda in Britain. Yet, from the onset she was prepared to make anti-war statements publically. This section includes her writings in support of conscientious objectors and against the war effort.

Keywords:   Bertrand Russell, Fenner Brockway, No Conscription Fellowship, World War One, Military Service Act

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