Aftermaths of War: Women’s Movements and Female Activists, by Edited by Ingrid Sharp and Matthew Stibbe

By Edited by Ingrid Sharp and Matthew Stibbe

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Additional info for Aftermaths of War: Women’s Movements and Female Activists, 1918-1923 (History of Warfare)

Example text

Only Sweden had to catch up after the war. ╯169. ╇ The much delayed law passed in 1925 was in effect nullified by Mussolini’s decision to end local elections for good in 1926. ╯36–8. ╯166, we have made some amendments and additions in line with information provided by our contributors. 65 The emphasis on suffrage as a measure of women’s political influence is in any case not especially reliable, not least because legislation was not always put into practice either fully or immediately and in central and eastern Europe especially the extent and significance of the right to vote was affected by rapid political power shifts: in Hungary for example the suffrage laws passed by the Karolyi government in November 1918 were never put into effect and the laws of 1919, although implemented in the elections of 1920, were in 1922 subject to restrictions that reduced the number of voters of both sexes.

254–6. ╯113–6. ╯20. But it should be noted that the soldiers’ hostility in 1917 was not necessarily indicative of general social attitudes and that women as combatants did gain more acceptance subsequently. According to research by Olga Shnyrova, the battalions were extremely popular outside the army and several more were organised in Moscow, Perm, Odessa and Ekaterinograd, with up to 5,000 women fighting on both sides during the civil war. Afterwards, women were incorporated into the Red Army as non-combatants, some achieving high office as commissars in the army’s political departments.

In the meantime, defeated and unstable successor states to the Habsburg Empire and revolutionary governments in Russia and Germany did initially grant female suffrage in 1917 and 1918 and, of course, as the table shows, most of the Scandinavian states (three out of five) had already granted female suffrage before the outbreak of war, with a fourth following in 1915. Only Sweden had to catch up after the war. ╯169. ╇ The much delayed law passed in 1925 was in effect nullified by Mussolini’s decision to end local elections for good in 1926.

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