Militant Suffragists Write the British Surveillance State, 1905-1924
Historians of the early twentieth century often focus on the surveillance of anarchist, communist, and anti-colonial movements, overlooking the resource-intensive policing of the women's suffrage movement as a significant expansion of the state's surveillance activities. Bridging that gap in the historical record, Watching Women draws on recently declassified Home Office documents to present a fuller picture of the British domestic surveillance practices.
The book maps the history of state surveillance of the British women's suffrage movement and its leaders, explaining how militant activists used various forms of writing – novels, short stories, journalism, and memoirs – to represent and resist state surveillance. These genres in the book enable specific, strategic responses to the state's repression of suffrage militancy. The book explores the aftermath of suffrage surveillance by tracing the diverging activist careers of two prominent suffragettes, Sylvia Pankhurst and Mary Allen, during and after World War I, as they continued their engagement with the state's surveillance apparatuses. In doing so, Watching Women illuminates histories of the suffrage campaign through women's experiences of navigating surveillance.
About the Author
Other Titles in LITERARY CRITICISM / European / English, Irish, Scottish, Welsh