Introduction
in Rethinking right-wing women
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Historians and political scientists have deemed the twentieth century 'the Conservative Century', owing to the electoral and cultural dominance of the Conservative Party in Britain. One aspect that has been under-explored, however, is the party's mobilisation of women and its positioning on gender issues. Theresa May's achievement is one more powerful example of the ascendancy of women to pinnacle leadership positions and, arguably, the pattern is more pronounced on the Right and among conservative, nationalist and inward-looking and exclusionist parties worldwide than on the Left. In the interwar period, the Conservative Party offered training and examinations for women organisers in the party, who were full-time paid officials. David Thackeray reflects on new research on women in the party, their activities, organisation and representation, in the first decade after enfranchisement.

Rethinking right-wing women

Gender and the Conservative Party, 1880s to the present

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