Modern American Society and Culture Seminar The Difference the Nineteenth Amendment Made: Southern Black Women and the Reconstruction of American Politics registration required at no cost 25 February 2020.Tuesday, 5:15PM - 7:30PM Liette Gidlow, Wayne State University Susan Ware, Schlesinger Library Image entitled /2012/juniper/assets/section37/Seminar_2019-2020/masc_banner.jpg

Many scholars have argued that though the enfranchisement of women was laudable, not much changed after women got the vote: the suffrage coalition splintered, women’s voter turnout was low, and the progressive reforms promised by suffragists failed to materialize. This interpretation, however, does not fully account for the activities of aspiring African American women voters in the Jim Crow South at the time or more broadly across the U.S. in the decades since. This paper argues that southern Black women’s efforts to vote, successful and otherwise, transformed not only the mid-century Black freedom struggle but political parties, election procedures, and social movements on the right and the left.

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