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Suffrage Reconstructed – Gender, Race, and Voting Rights in the Civil War Era - Cornell Scholarship Online
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Suffrage Reconstructed: Gender, Race, and Voting Rights in the Civil War Era

Laura E. Free


The Fourteenth Amendment, ratified on July 9, 1868, identified all legitimate voters as “male.” In so doing, it added gender-specific language to the U.S. Constitution for the first time. This book considers how and why the amendment’s authors made this decision. The book takes readers into the pre- and postwar fights over precisely who should have the right to vote. All men, black and white, were the ultimate victors, as gender became the single most important marker of voting rights during Reconstruction. The book argues that the Fourteenth Amendment’s language was shaped by three key groups ... More

Keywords: gender, Fourteenth Amendment, Constitution, right to vote, voting rights, Reconstruction, suffragists, African American activists, women’s rights activists, suffrage

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2015 Print ISBN-13: 9780801450860
Published to Cornell Scholarship Online: August 2016 DOI:10.7591/cornell/9780801450860.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Laura E. Free, author
Hobart and William Smith Colleges