Feminist responses to the second Anglo-Boer war, 1899–1902
in ‘The truest form of patriotism’

An examination of the responses to the second Anglo-Boer war of 1899–1902 illustrates how nationalist and imperialist campaigns could challenge feminist arguments regarding women's unique role in the nation. The Anglo-Boer war was as controversial within the feminist movement as it was in the wider political landscape. A study of the arguments of Josephine Butler, Emily Hobhouse and Millicent Garrett Fawcett demonstrates that liberal and imperialist discourses strongly influenced the feminist responses to the war, and highlights not only the divisions within feminism at the turn of the twentieth century, but also the problematic impact of the Anglo-Boer war on the peace movement itself. The most public feminist involvement in the Anglo-Boer war came from two women who were prominent in nineteenth-century feminism.

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‘The truest form of patriotism’

Pacifist feminism in Britain, 1870–1902


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