An emphasis on major players in the global spread of women’s suffrage distinguishes this volume from others of its ilk.
This chronology outlining the development and eventual success of women’s suffrage movements is subdivided by headings such as “The Trailblazers” and “Women at War.” Each spread is dedicated to a country or region, and it features succinct paragraphs that establish historical context and describe the women who helped advance the franchise in their respective countries. Care has been taken to acknowledge instances in which women suffered violent retaliation for their activism or when intersectional conditions such as race and class resulted in the uneven distribution of voting rights. The highly stylized art in each spread employs a range of bright colors and textures that suggest either some natural landscape or culturally specific item(s) from each featured country. The text’s recurring use of water metaphors (“waves of change,” etc.) echoes the endpapers, which feature a wave pattern in shades of blue overlaid with red check marks. The book itself begins with a colorful, undulating timeline that also serves as a table of contents, and it ends with a more detailed timeline and an index, although, disappointingly, it lacks a bibliography or resources for further reading. Also disappointing is the implication that a Qatari activist’s use of Twitter and Facebook led to a new constitution in 2003, before either existed.
Overall, an engaging introduction for a broad audience to the movements and individuals who fought worldwide for women’s right to vote. (Nonfiction. 8-adult)