19 thoughts on “Suffering With Suffragette

  1. Much better was Shoulder to Shoulder, a 1974 UK series that chronicled the Women’s Suffrage movement without any fictional characters or big-name stars—except possible for Siân Phillips—and interpolated the actual historical footage of the woman who threw herself in front of the King’s horse at Ascot, literally dying to make her point about giving women the vote.

      1. “…without any fictional characters or big-name stars—except possible for Siân Phillips…”

        Patricia Quinn played Christabel Pankhurst in this series, in between her stints playing Magenta on stage in “The Rocky Horror Show” and on screen in “The Rocky Horror Picture Show”.

        Though maybe she’s more “cult figure” than “big name star”… Michael Gough, Robert Hardy, Judy Parfitt and Bob Hoskins are in there, too.

  2. I was so excited to see this film, and then Meryl Streep did that interview where she said she was a humanist, not a feminist, and I got turned off. While I understand that some people are uncomfortable with labels and have issues with feminism stemming from thoughts about intersectionality (not to mention I’m tired of this question being lobbed at every female actor…), I didn’t get any such nuance from Streep’s answer. All she did was signal to me that she doesn’t understand what the word “feminism” or “humanism” means, which is quite sad for someone playing Emmeline Pankhurst.

      1. So true!

        By the way, thank you so much for the blog! It is the only thing getting me through dissertation drafting. I’m operating on a “write a paragraph, read a Frock Flicks post” rewards system (a system I had to revise from when I first discovered the blog in December and was reading a post after every sentence drafted…).

    1. A feminist does not have to be a humanist but a humanist is a feminist. Humanism embraces feminism so I don’t really understand the problem. Humanism is just a more inclusive term and I do understand what the terms mean because I am carry carrying humanist.

      1. I hope that that’s what Streep meant when she said it, but I think it raises hackles because there’s so many people who refuse to say that they are feminists. We’d probably be more comfortable with “Yes, I’m a feminist AND I’m a humanist.”

  3. That’s a really interesting coat in the second-to-bottom picture of Real!Pankhurst. Have you seen others like it? Does it fasten at one shoulder?

    1. It is! I haven’t, but then it’s been a while since I’ve done a deep-dive into early teens clothing. It does look like it’s double breasted and fastens at the shoulder.

  4. For the record, I am a feminist. Have been since I asked my mom at a very young age if women HAD to change their name after marriage.
    I really wanted to love this movie but it was like taking something good for you. And also leaves a sad aftertaste.

  5. I enjoyed it and bought it, but you do have a point about it being depressing throughout. It succeeded in making me angry on behalf the suffragettes, though, which was probably the point. That ending title role where it revealed how long it took other countries to give women the vote was a real sucker-punch to the gut: Saudi Arabia – 2015. Yikes.

  6. I just watched got to this one, and after pretty low expectations, I actually liked it. Although of course I love the gorgeous gowns and estates that are normally featured in our favorite period films, I appreciated seeing a somewhat more common experience. I thought the movie did a good job giving a feeling of some of what it was like for women at this time from various social classes and getting to see inside places like the flat, laundry and chemists shop.

    I also completely agree with this making me mad. I knew a decent amount about the suffragettes before seeing this movie (more than your average person, but Im no historian!), but I still have always struggled with what seemed like extreme tactics over the more peaceful suffragists. This movie was definitely helped!

  7. Often Lower class suffragettes spent their wages on clothes then they could comfortably afford. Plus Maud’s agency frustrates me, she’s just kind of “Okay, getting the vote. Meh, I guess I’ve got nothing better to do.”

Comments are closed.