Book

Minnie Fisher Cunningham

Judith N. McArthur and Harold L. Smith

Published in print October 2005 | ISBN: 9780195304862
Published online January 2010 | e-ISBN: 9780199871537 | DOI: https://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195304862.001.0001
Minnie Fisher Cunningham

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Minnie Fisher Cunningham was Texas's most important 20th-century political activist. Best known for directing Texas's successful woman suffrage campaign, she played an important role in the national suffrage movement, helped to establish the League of Women Voters, and served as its first executive secretary. One of the first American women to pursue a career in party politics, she was a founder and resident director of the Woman's National Democratic Club, and in 1927 became acting head of the Women's Division of the Democratic National Committee. Cunningham ran unsuccessfully for the U. S. Senate from Texas in 1928, and in the late 1930s returned to Washington, D.C. to work for the New Deal. She was so successful in presenting its policies to women's groups that the Democratic National Committee considered her the South's best political organizer. From 1944, when she ran for governor as a pro-New Deal candidate, until the end of her life, she was a leader of the Texas liberal movement and helped build an electoral coalition of women, minorities and male reformers within the Texas Democratic Party. An advocate for farmers and labor unions, and an opponent of gender, class, and racial discrimination in a conservative state, she helped to develop a Left Feminism allied with left-liberal organizations to press for expanded democracy and fundamental social change. Her forty years of activism helps fill in the still-emerging narrative of female political activism between the demise of the first women's movement after 1920 and the rebirth of feminism in the 1960s.

Keywords: woman suffrage; Left Feminism; Democratic Party; New Deal; Texas; female political activism

Book.  296 pages.  Illustrated.

Subjects: History of the Americas

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Table of Contents

Introduction in Minnie Fisher Cunningham

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A Daughter Of The New South in Minnie Fisher Cunningham

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The Rise Of A Public Woman in Minnie Fisher Cunningham

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Suffrage First in Minnie Fisher Cunningham

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In League With Women Voters in Minnie Fisher Cunningham

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Woman Citizen And Democratic Partisan in Minnie Fisher Cunningham

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A Woman’s New Deal in Minnie Fisher Cunningham

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