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Distant SistersAustralasian Women and the International Struggle for the Vote, 1880-1914$
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James Keating

Print publication date: 2020

Print ISBN-13: 9781526140951

Published to Manchester Scholarship Online: May 2021

DOI: 10.7765/9781526140968

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‘My heart … yearn[s] for a genuine voting Australian woman!’: Australasian suffragists and the international suffrage movement

‘My heart … yearn[s] for a genuine voting Australian woman!’: Australasian suffragists and the international suffrage movement

Chapter:
(p.64) 2 ‘My heart … yearn[s] for a genuine voting Australian woman!’: Australasian suffragists and the international suffrage movement
Source:
Distant Sisters
Author(s):

James Keating

Publisher:
Manchester University Press
DOI:10.7765/9781526140968.00009

This chapter examines Australasian suffragists’ complicated relationship with the International Council of Women and International Woman Suffrage Alliance, the two pillars of the international women’s movement before 1914. Bookended by the Victorian suffragist Vida Goldstein’s celebrated 1902 visit to the United States to represent Australia and New Zealand at the International Woman Suffrage Conference and her frustrated retreat from organised feminist politics by the end of the First World War, it charts the sudden rise and dramatic fall of Australasian suffragists’ influence on the world stage. Contesting the orthodox claim that distance kept antipodean women on the international periphery, the chapter explores the repercussions of national representation – the cornerstone of liberal internationalism – for women balancing old colonial and imperial identities with the new responsibilities of national and international political citizenship. Australasian women, it finds, were crucial to shaping the norms of international non-governmental organisations as they emerged at the start of the twentieth century.

Keywords:   Australasia, Australia, International Council of Women, international non-governmental organisations, International Woman Suffrage Alliance, international women’s movement, New Zealand, Vida Goldstein, women’s suffrage

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