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Discrete CollectionsThe Women's Library
TitleCole, Dame Margaret
Ref No8SUF/B/053
Box Fetch NoBox 1: Disc 12
Date31 Jul 1975
Extent53a - 34:52 mins, 53b - 40:36 mins
Admin Biographical HistorySee the biography for Cole; Margaret Isabel (1863-1980); Dame
DescriptionInterview took place at 4 Ashdown, Clivedon Court, Clevelands, London W13.
Interview is in two parts 8SUF/B/053a and 8SUF/B/053b.
0:00 mins:

Her father's anti-suffragist attitude. Penury of her father's upbringing due to his father's investments in public education. His dominance in the home. Sending her and her sister to college. His inconsistencies regarding the rights of women. The relationship between her siblings and her father. Disinheritance of her and her older brother. Roedean School for Women, lack of feminist teaching/support. Lack of access to news about the suffrage movement while at school. Partisan nature of Women's Social & Political Union (WSPU) in 1908/1909. Beginning of violence under the Liberal government. Mother's support of suffragettes.

15:00 mins:

Her friends who were active suffragettes. Her introduction in politics by her brother. Meeting Barbara Wootton. Not seeing herself as a feminist, not mentioning it in her autobiography. Socialist Labour movement. Her admiration of Emmeline Pankhurst. Emmeline Pankhurst coming to speak at Cambridge. Her dislike of Christabel. Her interest in Sylvia, because of her connection to Labour. An incident of Sylvia Pankhurst escaping arrest. Her brother Raymond's support of suffrage. Her support of violence within the movement. How being a woman affected her as a Labour politician. Interest in industrial affairs. Pre-First World War domestic politics. Her husband's support for women's rights.

30:00 mins:

How her husband's feminist views played out in their home life. How raising a family affected her career. Her opinion of why prejudice existed against women running for Parliament. Raymond being imprisoned. Harold Laski planting a bomb in Sussex. Her political roles. The Fabian society. Emancipatory changes during her lifetime-vote, clothing.

45:00 mins:

HG Wells' Ann Veronica. The resurgent use of domestic servants as people came to the cities between the wars; its effect on her family. Her involvement in feminist organisations. Her opinion of Beatrice Webb. Her dislike of the extreme suffragism led by Christabel Pankhurst. Thoughts on the Factory Act. Her opinion of Margaret Bondfield and Ellen Wilkinson. The reason for her dislike of Christabel.
Interview summary:
Her father's anti-suffragism and dominance in the parental home. His relationship with his children. Her and her siblings' attitude to women's suffrage in the Edwardian period. G D H Cole's attitude to feminism, and Dame Margaret's role in the Cole household. Her involvement in the Labour Party. Impact of the decline of domestic service on women's 20th century situation. Her opposition to the type of feminist who opposed protective legislation. Her dislike of Christabel Pankhurst. How she came to write Women of To-Day. Her attitude to women's organisations generally.

60:00 mins:

Her opinion of Margot Asquith and Nancy Astor. Nancy's political beliefs. The birth control movement. Meeting Eleanor Rathbone. Antagonism towards men in the Women's Movement. Working in Labour politics with her husband.
Access StatusOpen
Access ConditionsInterview recordings are available online and can be accessed at the link provided in this record.
Former Reference NumberTape 15
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