The 19th Amendment and the Myth that All Women Vote the Same

The 19th Amendment and the Myth that All Women Vote the Same

In August 1920, the 19th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution made it illegal to prevent people from voting based on their sex, enfranchising millions of women around the country. But its protections were not applied equally. Two leading Notre Dame political scientists will discuss what the 19th Amendment did and did not do, the role women have played in the elections of the past 100 years, and the myth of the homogenous "woman voter."

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Dianne Pinderhughes

Dianne Pinderhughes

Dianne Pinderhughes is a Notre Dame Presidential Faculty Fellow, and Professor in the Department of Africana Studies and the Department of Political Science. She holds a concurrent faculty appointment in the Department of American Studies, is a Faculty Fellow at the Kellogg Institute, and is a research faculty member in Gender Studies. Her research addresses inequality with a focus on racial, ethnic, and gender politics and public policy in the Americas, explores the creation of American civil society institutions in the twentieth century, and analyzes their influence on the formation of voting rights policy.

Pinderhughes has co-authored Contested Transformation:  Race, Gender, and Political Leadership in 21st Century America, (Cambridge 2016), and most recently Uneven Roads: An Introduction to US Racial and Ethnic Politics,  also co-authored (Sage CQ 2019).  

Christina Wolbrecht

Christina Wolbrecht
Christina Wolbrecht

Christina Wolbrecht is professor of political science, director of the Rooney Center for the Study of American Democracy, and C. Robert and Margaret Hanley Family Director of the Notre Dame Washington Program. Her co-authored book, “A Century of Votes for Women: American Elections Since Suffrage” (Cambridge 2020), examines how women voted across the first 100 years since the ratification of the 19th Amendment. Wolbrecht also is the co-author of “Counting Women’s Ballots: Female Voters from Suffrage Through the New Deal” (Cambridge 2016) and the author of “The Politics of Women’s Rights” (Princeton 2000), both of which were recognized with national book awards. Wolbrecht has authored or co-authored articles on such topics as women as political role models, the representation of women, and partisan position-taking on education policy. She is co-editor of the journal “Politics & Gender.”

Kenya Young '94 (Moderator)

Kenya Young

Kenya Young ’94 is the executive producer of “Morning Edition” at National Public Radio (NPR).

Previously, she was the executive producer of “All Things Considered” on the weekends. In that role, she was responsible for the day-to-day running of the show on the weekends and the planning of Michel Martin’s “NPR Presents: Going There” national events. She was previously a supervising editor on “Morning Edition.”

During her time at NPR, she has served as an editor and producer for several NPR programs including “News & Notes,” “Day To Day,” “Tell Me More,” and “Talk of The Nation.” Kenya started at NPR in the California bureau as an intern in 2007. In addition to show production, she has been a part of special coverage teams during the 2008 and 2012 elections, the 10th anniversary of the Sept. 11 attacks, and live coverage of the Sandy Hook school shootings and the Boston Marathon bombing. 

Political scientist releases definitive research on the first century of women voters

Presented by Office of Public Affairs and Communications

In new research fittingly published in the year marking the 100th anniversary of women’s right to vote in the U.S., two political scientists trace the evolution of women’s voting behavior, turnout and candidate choice.

A Century of Votes for Women: American Elections Since Suffrage,” from University of Notre Dame Professor of Political Science Christina Wolbrecht and her co-author J. Kevin Corder, professor of political science at Western Michigan University, is the only complete source of information on how women have voted since suffrage through the present day. The professors’ research dispels the illusion of the homogenous “woman voter,” showing how changing political, social and economic realities swayed votes and how assumptions about women as voters influenced politicians, the press and scholars.

Read more here.

Women’s Suffrage and Political Barbies

Presented by Office of Public Affairs and Communications

In the first episode of “With a Side of Knowledge,” we drop in on political science professor Christina Wolbrecht. She’s co-authored a book titled, “A Century of Votes for Women,” which looks at how women have used their right to vote in the hundred years since the 19th Amendment was passed. Read more about the book here.

Was Women’s Suffrage a Failure?

Presented by College of Arts and Letters

The ratification of the Nineteenth Amendment in 1920 granted American women the right to vote. Critics almost immediately decried women’s suffrage as a failure. This talk provides new insight into whether, how, and with what impact women cast their ballots in the period immediately following suffrage. Christina Wolbrecht is the Director of the Rooney Center for the Study of American Democracy C. Robert and Margaret Hanley Family Director of the Notre Dame Washington Program Professor of Political Science.

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