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Gendered Money

Gendered Money: Financial Organization in Women's Movements, 1880-1933

Pernilla Jonsson
Silke Neunsinger
Copyright Date: 2012
Edition: 1
Published by: Berghahn Books
Pages: 278
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  • Book Info
    Gendered Money
    Book Description:

    As economic citizenship was a pre-condition of full citizenship, the lack of economic autonomy was an important motivation during the early stages of the women's movement. Independent of their class background, women had less access to not only financial resources but also social and cultural capital, i.e., member's commitment. Resources are therefore of particular interest from a gender perspective, and this book sheds light on the importance of resources for women's struggles for political rights. Highlighting the financial strategies of the first wave of Swedish middle-class and socialist women's movements and comparing them with similar organizations in Germany, England, and Canada, the authors show the importance of class, gender, age, and the national context, offering a valuable contribution to the discussion of resource mobilization theories in the context of social movements.

    eISBN: 978-0-85745-272-6
    Subjects: Sociology, Political Science, History

Table of Contents

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  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-iv)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. v-vii)
  3. List of Figures and Tables
    (pp. viii-x)
  4. List of Abbreviations
    (pp. xi-xi)
  5. List of Swedish Terms
    (pp. xii-xiii)
  6. Acknowledgements
    (pp. xiv-xvi)
  7. Introduction Funding Women’s Political Struggle – a Matter of Gender and Class?
    (pp. 1-26)
    Pernilla Jonsson and Silke Neunsinger

    This is a book about women’s organizing, and what is rarely mentioned in relation to women’s organizing: money and other resources. We want to know how access and the strategic use of resources over time have mattered for women’s struggle for equality. We want to find out what kinds of resources were available for the early liberal and social democratic women’s movement and how they were used. We also want to know if any class- or gender-specific financial strategies can be discerned and, if so, how they mattered for women’s organizing. This book is also a contribution to the discussion...

  8. Chapter 1 The Fredrika Bremer Association 1884–1925
    (pp. 27-36)

    The Fredrika Bremer Association (Fredrika Bremer förbundet, FBA) was founded in December 1884, and took its name from the famous author and pioneer of women’s emancipation in Sweden. It was the first national women’s organization in Sweden and continues to exert political influence today, though it has lost members and power during the last three decades. The establishment of a Swedish women’s movement coincided with women’s organizing in other parts of Europe and North America. During the second half of the nineteenth century more formal national organizations were established around these ideas. As in many other countries, loose networks preceded...

  9. Chapter 2 A ‘Bourgeois’ Pioneer’s Purse
    (pp. 37-82)

    Funds and how they were received could be crucial for a movement. This section will deal with access to monetary resources in the Fredrika Bremer Association (FBA) and whether the source of income restricted its use. As an organization of prominent citizens, it is to be expected that it had members with specialized resources useful for the organization and a personal financial situation allowing them to volunteer their services or contribute funds to the organization. Private donations rather than membership fees would be the main source of income for this kind of organization.

    However, the use of funds depended on...

  10. Chapter 3 Human Resources in the Fredrika Bremer Association
    (pp. 83-107)

    Of course not only monetary resources were important for organizing. Framing and culture have been suggested as being just as important and could provide revenues as well; those who frame an aim have the potential to both mass-mobilize and create coalitions with resource-rich organizations and individuals.¹ Below, some human resources used by the Fredrika Bremer Association (FBA), and how they varied over time, will be discussed.

    In the previous chapter it was shown that membership fees were one of the main income sources of the FBA. Since Sweden was sparsely populated and mass movements were just about to take form,...

  11. Chapter 4 Social Democratic Women
    (pp. 108-131)

    The funding of the socialist women’s movement has, until now, never been a subject for academic research. Women’s sections in socialist parties have for a long time been regarded as the silent coffeemaker troops of the party, organizing bazaars and jumble sales to pay for the party’s expenses for elections and rent.² For this reason they have been regarded as the richest organizations in the party, as the citation above from the Swedish Social Democratic Women’s Federation (Sveriges Socialdemokratiska kvinnoförbund, SSKF) indicates. The picture of women as coffeemaker troops not only reduces women’s work to something outside the political sphere,...

  12. Chapter 5 The Price of Turning Women into Socialists
    (pp. 132-182)

    Money’s social value depends on the source of income, on the use of it and on its form of exchange. There are differences between direct payments, entitlements to use money, and gifts.² The social value of money is also affected by gender and class.³ If we want to understand how class and gender mattered for access and use of resources, we have to ask which sources of income social democratic women had. However, not only the number of available resources is important, but also tactical choices about how to spend the money and how to allocate the money are of...

  13. Chapter 6 Human Resources in Social Democratic Women’s Organizations
    (pp. 183-214)

    Money is important to plan and carry out political activities, but as the discussion about income strategies has shown, an organization relied in the first place on increasing the number of members. Members are important in all respects. Their number is important for political action; as a large number of members can challenge political decisions, they are important during street demonstrations and barricades. Not only their number but also their individual qualities, such as education, political experience, political prestige, and access to other networks, are important resources for a movement.

    The number of members in the social democratic women’s movement...

  14. Conclusion Gendered Money
    (pp. 215-236)

    In the historiography of the women’s movement, and in different attempts to theorize women’s struggle for full citizenship, few have paid attention to the impact of funds and the concept of money.

    The reasons for the longstanding silence might be due to the women’s movement’s own historiography. Political citizenship in terms of votes for both men and women was a demand that united a splintered American women’s movement. The ‘women’s question’ was turned into a question of political citizenship and exported to the international arena, where it started to dominate discussions on gender equality, overshadowing demands for economic citizenship.¹ However,...

  15. Bibliography
    (pp. 237-252)
  16. Index
    (pp. 253-260)