Alva Vanderbilt Belmont

Unlikely Champion of Women's Rights
Author(s): Sylvia D. Hoffert
Original Publish Date: Nov 23, 2011
Product Number: EB00742741
Released: Nov 19, 2018
Business Term: Purchase
ISBN: #9780253005601
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A fascinating biography of the New York socialite who played a surprising role in the fight for suffrage. Born in the middle of the nineteenth century, Alva Vanderbilt Belmont was known to be domineering, temperamental, and opinionated. She married two millionaires, and pressured her daughter to wed an aristocrat. This resolve to get her own way regardless of the consequences stood her in good stead when she joined the American woman suffrage movement in 1909. Thereafter, she used her wealth, her administrative expertise, and her social celebrity to help convince Congress to pass the 19th Amendment and then to persuade the exhausted leaders of the National Woman's Party to initiate a worldwide equal rights campaign. In this book, Sylvia D. Hoffert argues that Belmont was a feminist visionary and that her financial support was crucial to the success of the suffrage and equal rights movements. She also shows how Belmont's activism, and the money she used to support it, enriches our understanding of the personal dynamics of the American woman's rights movement. Drawing upon and analyzing Belmont's own memoirs, she illustrates how this determined woman went about the complex and collaborative process of creating her public self. "Engaging . . . Highly recommended." —Choice

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