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UCM Guest Lecture to Examine Diversity in the Women’s Suffrage Movement

By Mike Greife, September 8, 2017

WARRENSBURG, MO – The University of Central Missouri will host Cathleen Cahill, associate professor of history at Pennsylvania State University and distinguished lecturer for the Organization of American Historians, as she presents Who Fought for Women’s Suffrage: A More Diverse View at 7 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 20, in Elliott Student Union 240.

Cahill’s lecture commemorates the centennial of the women’s suffrage movement in America and the historic protests on behalf of the vote for women. The lecture is part of Cahill’s larger project, Joining the Parade: Women of Color Challenge the Mainstream Suffrage Movement, which investigates the “alternative genealogies of feminism.” She examines the participation of African American, Indigenous, Chinese American and Hispana women in the fight for women’s suffrage before and after the 19th amendment.

As a social historian, Cahill focuses on women’s working and political lives. She examines how identities such as race, nationality, class and age have shaped them as individuals and studies these movements to reveal women in some interesting roles.

Cahill’s lecture at UCM coincides with the campus celebration of Constitution Week centered on the theme of “Protests that Changed America.”

“A constitutional guarantee for women’s right to vote emerged as a key demand of the women’s rights movement in the late 19th and early 20th centuries,” said Sara Brooks Sundberg, UCM professor of history. “Dr. Cahill’s research complicates the standard image of that movement, reminding us that it took a plurality of voices in protest to make the women’s vote a reality.”

Cahill’s lecture is funded by a grant from the Missouri Humanities Council, with additional support from the UCM Department of History, Sociology and Anthropology and Cross Disciplinary Studies and the American Democracy project.


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