There’s an interesting piece over on Collectors Weekly about those anti-Suffragette postcards I sometimes use to illustrate my posts here. (Thanks to Jezebel for the link; I’m not exactly a regular reader of Collectors Weekly.) Lisa Hix puts the cards in context, offering a sort of mini-history of the suffragette movement in the process, and notes that the cards present some of the often contradictory “arguments” still used against feminism today.
Suffragettes were drawn as conniving coquettes, ugly, mean spinsters or, worse, ugly, mean wives who left their families helpless as they attended town-hall meetings. Scenes of women politicians showed them hatching diabolical plots to undermine and emasculate men further. …
“Married Suffragettes were depicted as nagging wives, that was a common one, and the wife was always big, and the husband tiny and puny,” [historian June] Purvis says. “Or, if they were single, Suffragettes were depicted as very ugly women with big feet, protruding teeth, hair pulled back in a bun, and glasses. They were depicted as quite mannish and unattractive so that no man would want to marry them.”
That all sounds a bit familiar, huh?
Here’s are some classic portrayals of Suffragettes as ugly spinsters:
And one depicting Suffragettes as attractive women using their sexual wiles to control men:
Other postcards depicted Suffragettes as children, often whiny babies:
For more anti-Suffragette postcards, see:
Catherine H. Palczewski’s Suffrage Postcard Archive
June Purvis’ BBC History slideshow
The Woman Suffrage Memorabilia site
And this giant gallery assembled by the misogynistic antifeminist who calls himself Patriactionary.
Thanks, Mr. Patriactionary, for reminding us how completely backwards you guys are. Not that we really needed reminding.