"Not a personal matter, all women of Cape Colony, Women's Enfranchisement League" Read the full letter
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Letter ReferenceOlive Schreiner BC16/Box8/Fold4/MMPr/AssortedCorres/FredPL/17
ArchiveUniversity of Cape Town, Manuscripts & Archives, Cape Town
Epistolary TypeLetter
Letter Date After Start: May 1910 ; Before End: June 1910
Address Fromna
Address To
Who ToFrederick ('Fred') Pethick-Lawrence
Other Versions
PermissionsPlease read before using or citing this transcription
The Project is grateful to Manuscripts and Archives, University of Cape Town, for kindly allowing us to transcribe this Olive Schreiner letter, which is part of its Manuscripts and Archives Collections. A typescript only of this letter is available. The transcription here follows this typescript and includes any uncertain dates, ellipses, mistakes and so on. Edward VII died in early May 1910.
1 Thanks for your letter. I fear the King’s death will put everything
2back. I have been told he backed up Asquith on the woman question, but
3I fear the new King and Queen will be as bad as the old. Are they? I
4haven’t much hope of this Ministry passing the Veto. I wish Lloyd
& the decent men would leave Grey and Haldane. Nothing good can
6come from a Ministry in which such men are. When women do get the vote
7in England the militant movement will have been a splendid education
8to women as well as men and put them on quite a different footing from
9what they are on here and in other countries.
11 What we have to do here is to educate our women TO WANT IT. Do tell me
12what you can of public affairs in England. One gets so little in the
13wires and doesn’t believe half one reads...
15 If you see Elizabeth Robins do tell her how much I value all she
16writes not only on the woman question proper but all her writings. In
17any matter relating to sex she has such a keen deep perception. I have
18lately re-read for the third time her "Dark Lantern". Since I have
19been so ill good fiction has a value it never had before: and even
20poor fiction I have read for the first time in my life. I have always
21rather despised people who read fiction, but I see its use now. I have
22a great deal of trouble and sorrow in connection with our Women’s
23Society. It has nearly broke me down. Our getting the franchise here
24depends on the plans of the political leaders. But the emancipation,
25such a deeper and longer work will take a full generation here. The
26hope is in the younger women coming on. Give my love to your wife &
27all the dear women.
The book referred to is: Elizabeth Robins (1905) A Dark Lantern London: Heinemann.