Tag Archives: Female participation

A female politician? Lady Derby and mid-Victorian political life

Originally posted on The History of Parliament:
Continuing our series on Women and Parliament, Dr. Jennifer Davey of the University of East Anglia looks at the influence of Mary, Countess of Derby (1824-1900) within the worlds of high politics and…

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An Artist in the Attic: Women and the House of Commons in the Early-Nineteenth Century

In this guest post, Amy Galvin-Elliott from the University of Warwick looks at how women were able to witness debates in the House of Commons from the ‘ventilator’, a space used until the fire of October 1834 destroyed the old … Continue reading

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Voice and Vote: behind the scenes

Originally posted on The History of Parliament:
This blog looks at how the History of Parliament has been involved behind the scenes with the Voice and Vote exhibition which opened in Westminster Hall last week. Dr. Philip Salmon and Dr.…

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Before the vote was won: women and politics, 1832-68

This month marks the 100th anniversary of the 1918 Representation of the People Act, which received royal assent on 6 February. For the first time, virtually all the adult male population received the parliamentary franchise, whereas before this reform, around … Continue reading

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MP of the Month: George Donisthorpe Thompson (1804-1878)

December’s MP of the Month blog charts the path into Parliament of George Thompson, a self-educated book-seller’s son. As one of Britain’s foremost platform orators he was a major figure in the abolition of slavery in the West Indies and … Continue reading

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‘A woman actually voted!’: Lily Maxwell and the Manchester by-election of November 1867

Today marks the 150th anniversary of the casting of a parliamentary vote by Lily Maxwell, a Manchester shopkeeper, more than half a century before the partial enfranchisement of women in 1918. On 26 November 1867, at a by-election in Manchester, … Continue reading

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Five elections in seven years: Peterborough, Whalley and the Fitzwilliam interest

With suggestions of election fatigue setting in across Britain, this week’s blog – featuring our MP of the Month, George Hammond Whalley – looks at a constituency which saw five elections held in seven years between 1852 and 1859: the … Continue reading

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MP of the Month: Daniel Gaskell (1782-1875)

Our Victorian Commons project is shedding new light on the increasingly important role played in the behind-the-scenes business of the post-1832 House of Commons, particularly in the committee-rooms, by MPs who came from non-elite backgrounds. While a family inheritance enabled … Continue reading

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‘The first humble beginnings of an agitation’: the women’s suffrage petition of 7 June 1866

Today marks the 150th anniversary of the presentation to Parliament of the first mass women’s suffrage petition on 7 June 1866. Signed by around 1,500 women, it was presented to the Commons by John Stuart Mill, who had been returned … Continue reading

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MP of the month: William Pinney and another kind of ‘slavery election’

William Pinney’s career as an MP serves as an important reminder of the legacy of slave ownership in British public life and the very different attitudes to electoral corruption that existed in the nineteenth century, even among radically-inclined Liberals. In Pinney’s … Continue reading

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MP of the month: Wyndham Lewis

Wyndham Lewis (1780-1838) is probably best remembered today for bankrolling the future prime minister Benjamin Disraeli’s election to Parliament. Lewis’s wife Mary, an aspiring society hostess with an eye for younger men, had taken a shine to Disraeli and adopted … Continue reading

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Parliament Week 2013: Women in Democracy

To mark Parliament Week 2013, the theme of which is ‘Women in Democracy’, we would like to share some of our recent research highlighting the varied nature of female participation in British political life during the nineteenth century, despite the … Continue reading

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MP of the month: George Faithfull

Continuing our recent focus on Victorian female voters and women’s suffrage, this MP of the month feature highlights the career of George Faithfull (1790-1863), a Brighton radical who clashed spectacularly with his former supporters over the rights of women voters … Continue reading

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The Victorian female franchise

Welcome to the first of our guest blogs. On BBC Radio 4 tonight Dr Sarah Richardson presents a programme about the discovery of an early Victorian poll book listing women voters (click here to listen). Female participation in non-parliamentary elections … Continue reading

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