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February 9, 2022

Members of the Japanese Women’s Suffrage League Requesting Women’s Suffrage, 1924

A vintage photo shows members of the Japanese Women’s Suffrage League carrying 20,000 petitions to the Imperial Diet requesting women’s suffrage in 1924.

In 1921, women were allowed to attend political meetings, and the Japanese Women’s Suffrage League (Fusen Kakutoku Domei) was formed in 1924. Japan was a highly patriarchal society, and the League fought for inclusion in the areas of society, government, education, labor, and employment.

Japan’s parliament, the Diet, turned down the request for suffrage in the 1920s as they believed that women should attend to their families. The suffrage movement gained strength, but lost momentum during the buildup to World War II. Japanese women won the right to vote on the same terms as men in 1947.

(Denise Hight/ Historical Photos of Women’s Stories)


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