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Suffrage, Turnout and the Household: The Case of Early Women Voters in Sweden

Presented by Dr Mona Morgan-Collins, King's College London

The University of Exeter Q-Step Centre seminar
Date5 October 2022
Time13:00 to 15:00

Knightley Boardroom

How were newly enfranchised women mobilized? Classic narratives suggest that newly enfranchised women were mobilized by their arguably more politicized husbands. However, husbands' mobilization of wives has not been subject to rigorous tests, primarily reflecting lack of suitable data.

Exploiting unique individual level turnout data from electoral registers in a mid-sized city in Sweden at the time of women's suffrage, we exploit several complementing designs and provide evidence that whilst marriage was mobilizing for wives, it was as important for husbands. Building on research that emphasizes importance of social networks for mobilization, we interpret these results as consistent with an explanation where marriage provides a prime discussion forum for both spouses. The opportunity for frequent interactions within marriage encourages turnout and mobilization of both women and men even in a context where political resources are not equally distributed between women and men, and sexist attitudes to politics remain prevalent.

Dr Mona Morgan-Collins is a Lecturer (Assistant Professor) in Gender and Political Economy at King's College London.

To register for this seminar please click here.


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