Women Suffrage And Black Suffrage Summary

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Dudden, Faye E. Fighting Chance: The Struggle over Women Suffrage and Black Suffrage in Reconstruction America. New York: Oxford University Press, 2014.

1. Thesis: Dudden argues the feminists of the Reconstruction Era saw an opening for women 's suffrage when coming abolition of slavery and black suffrage. Dudden 's book is the tale of black and women suffrage movements finding ways to coexist and ultimately fighting against one and other.

2. Themes: 1. The first theme of the book is teamwork; the main team being Anthony and Stanton. Dudden places a lot of emphasis on how the few key players she uses team up, for and against each other, under the guises of political movement groups. Dudden shows how alliances could break or make a movement.
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The book begins with an introduction, introducing us to many of the key players in the book followed by an explanation of how the book is written and why. (Few key characters in a short period of history). The book is then followed by seven chapters and a conclusion. Each chapter begins a new era in the struggle for both suffrage movements beginning in the 1850 's and ending in 1869. The first chapter, The age is ripe for the women question, begins the quest of defining what role women reformers wanted to play, and what their goals should be focused on. Anthony ultimately decides that the vote should be primary goal, but Dudden does touch on some other subjects that get placed on the back burner, such as sexual autonomy, legal and property rights. Chapter two, Black Rights, Women 's Rights, and Civil, focuses on our two key players, Anthony and Stanton, taking a step and fighting for the end of slavery, because as Dudden reveals, Anthony believed that their efforts in the war would benefit both women and black (male) suffrage in the end (60). In Chapter three, The Negro 's Hour, new lines are drawn as Wendell Phillips introduces his "Negro Hour" theory. This theory will ultimately divide Phillips and Anthony for the remainder of the text and will also place Anthony in a subordinate role to Phillips because he holds the purse strings to the Hovey Fund. In chapter four, The Struggle for Equal …show more content…
Throughout the book, there were typographical errors such as misspellings (139) and omitted words (14). This did not do much to damage the entire story, but I felt it did weaken my opinion. Another weakness is Dudden 's bibliographical choices. While her varied and long bibliography allowed for a vivid tale to be told, I found a lot of her sources to be primarily focused on women 's suffrage, rather than having an equal amount on both movements. I feel this lends her story to be more of how the black suffrage movement "beat" the women 's suffrage movement. She also used the term "black (male)" suffrage a lot. I feel that she could have clarified once that "black suffrage" meant black male

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