Equivocal Feminists: The Social Democratic Federation and the Woman Question 1884-1911 (Hardback)
  • Equivocal Feminists: The Social Democratic Federation and the Woman Question 1884-1911 (Hardback)
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Equivocal Feminists: The Social Democratic Federation and the Woman Question 1884-1911 (Hardback)

(author)
£72.00
Hardback 312 Pages / Published: 07/03/1996
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This 1996 book takes a look at the relationship between socialism and feminism in the years before the First World War through a detailed examination of the Social Democratic Federation (SDF), Britain's first Marxist party. It reassesses the history of the SDF, exploring for the first time SDF ideas and practice on issues such as marriage and 'free love', women and work, and the suffrage, as well as the attitudes taken to women and their potential as socialists. Dr Hunt shows how the SDF came to officially equivocate on the woman question and how this shaped what it meant to be a socialist woman in the following years. Through this fascinating examination of the links and antagonisms between the feminist and socialist movements, Dr Hunt not only reclaims the history of a forgotten group of socialist women, but also sheds light on the perennial debate about the comparative significance of sex and class in defining political identity.

Publisher: Cambridge University Press
ISBN: 9780521554510
Number of pages: 312
Weight: 630 g
Dimensions: 229 x 152 x 21 mm


MEDIA REVIEWS
"Karen Hunt fills a remaining notable gap with her case study of the Social Democratic Federation (SDF), the Marxist wing of the British socialist movement, and its views on the position of women. In an impressive forensic exercise in political pathology, she dissects the theoretical inheritance, ideological leanings, and political policies and practices with regard to women's issues of this most masculinist of organizations." Sandra Stanley Holton, Albion
"[Hunt] has carefully reconstructed the different strands in the SDF debates on a range of women-centered issues, from free love and married women's right to work, to suffrage, to the feminist movement, noting the shifts in the arguments over the life span of the Federation....Karen Hunt writes with clarity and her cautious, balanced conclusions reflect her academic integrity." Pamela M. Graves, International Labor and Working Class History
"...one of the best books ever written on the subject of socialism and gender....This is the first review I have ever written in which I am tempted to move to platitudes of praise rather than provide even a brief survey of the contents." American Historical Review
"Karen Hunt fill sa remaining notable gap with her case study of the Social Democratic Federation (SDF), the Marxist wing of the British socialist movement, and its views on the position of women. In an impressive forensic exercise in political policies and practices with regard to women's issues of this most masculinist of organizations. In so doing, she usefully reminds us that the SDF included figures, such as Dora Montefiore and Herbert Burrows, who sought to ensure more serious consideration of the Woman Question, in contest with some of the better-known vocal misogynists among its leadership, such as Belfort Bax." Sandra Stanley Holton, Albion
"...this book makes a very useful addition to the growing body of literature on socialism and feminism in the late nineteenth century." Barbara Caine, Victorian Studies

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