The greatest weapon against women’s suffrage: LOLCats

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Back in the day, these images of kittens were used by those opposed to women’s suffrage to mock its supporters. I cannot imagine it worked, because these kittens are adorable.

As the suffrage movement continued, though, the imagery of cats took on a very different tone. Particularly so after the British government implemented the Cat and Mouse Act, which allowed officials to release imprisoned suffragettes (many of whom were hunger striking) for medical care, only to lock them up again later – somewhat like a cat toying with a mouse, hence the name. Once it was out in the open, you started seeing images like this:

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Not quite as cuddly.

More info (including one disturbing image of a banged-up cat) in this Jezebel article. Mostly I just wanted to post some pictures of cats, because, hey, it’s the internet.

  • Erica Wagner

    Interesting article, and interesting posters. Loved the implication in some of the cartoons on the Jezebel site that men are too stupid to even know how to make tea. How insulting is that. Seems like it could have been used as an argument that the wrong gender was being denied the vote all along.

    And it’s also interesting how much the meaning of the term “liberal” has changed over the years.

  • TheRidger

    In classical European usage, “liberal” meant the party who defended the rights of business. “Labor” was what we in the USA think of as liberal – which is why, for instance, the “liberal” Republicans of Theodore Roosevelt’s time were actually called “progressives”.