‘Deeds not words!’: A comparative analysis of feminist militancy in pre- and post-1968 Europe

Katharina Karcher

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Abstract

This chapter compares and contrasts the activities and ideology of two militant feminist groups: the Red Zora (RZ), which carried out dozens of arson attacks and bombings in West Germany in the 1970s and 1980s, and the Women’s Social and Political Union (WSPU), which played a central role in promoting militant tactics in the British movement for women’s suffrage in the early 20th century. Although the RZ and WSPU operated in different geo-political contests and held very different ideological views, both formed in the context of broader feminist campaigns and resorted to militant tactics because they felt that constitutional means had failed to improve the situation of women. The chapter shows that the movements and ideas associated with 1968 have contributed to a significant change in the ideology and organization of militant feminist activists.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationGender, Emancipation, and Political Violence
Subtitle of host publicationRethinking the Legacy of 1968
EditorsSarah Colvin, Katharina Karcher
PublisherRoutledge
Chapter2
ISBN (Print)9780815384694
Publication statusPublished - 23 Jul 2018

Publication series

NameGender and Global Politics Series

Keywords

  • feminism, militancy, suffragettes, 1968, violence, Rote Zora

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