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Title: 'Generous and lofty sympathies' : the Kensington Society, the 1866 women's suffrage petition and the development of mid-Victorian feminism
Author: Dingsdale, Ann
Awarding Body: University of Greenwich
Current Institution: University of Greenwich
Date of Award: 1995
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The women's suffrage petition presented to the House of Commons in June 1866 is credited with being the first move in the British campaign. Yet although given a pivotal position in the women's movement, it and its organisation have received scant attention. This thesis examines the origins of this petition, which was organised by members of the Kensington Society (1865-1868). It investigates the members of this society, and those 1,499 women who signed the petition. This thesis looks in detail at these women both statistically and, in so far as it is ever possible, in terms of the 'experience' of the individuals involved. The thesis uses information from census, directories, etc. as well as biographical resources, in a variety of ways, ranging from 'life histories' of sample rank and file individuals, to statistical data covering several hundred women, and including charts which explore the activities of individual women over time, and case studies of groups of up to fifly women. Following the Introductory chapter, Chapter Two presents the context for change within which the Kensington Society and the petition came into being. Chapter Three introduces some rank and file women, and looks at the role of older women. Chapter Four considers the Kensington Society, and the part its members played in collecting the signatures for the petition in 1866 and looks at the age, marital status, class and geographical distribution of both Kensington Society members and those women who signed this petition. Chapter Five explores shared experience, and Chapter Six shared commitment Chapter Seven considers the implications of this investigation for the history of the early campaigns for women's suffrage in Britain.
Supervisor: John, Angela Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: DA Great Britain ; JA Political science (General)