in olden days…?

I recently attended a friend’s wedding ceremony held in the Council Chamber of Camden Town Hall in London.  Milling about as official photos were taken, I noticed a black and white print hanging on the wall, featuring the Council members of 1901.  Given that this was pre-suffragettes, equal opps and @everydaysexism, it’s hardly unsurprising that every single one was male (and White).

camden council 1901

Far more surprising – shocking actually – are the contemporary instances  of all male ‘representative’ gatherings making significant decisions on issues impacting women.  The Donald reinstating the Mexico City Policy removing US funding to any overseas organisation that offers abortions, witnessed by his team of (male, white) close advisors (23 January 2017).  The Northern Powerhouse Conference leaflet which featured precisely 0 female keynotes (not to mention the programme which featured 13 female speakers out of a total of 98).  Extreme examples of male dominated fora?  Or public examples of a stubbornly enduring commonplace?

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Published by

Kate Carruthers Thomas

Research Fellow, writer, poet.

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