To celebrate the centenary of some women being given the right to become members of Parliament (Qualification of Women Act), the University of Hertfordshire is taking part in a major international conference - A Century of Women MPs 1918 – 2018 from 5-7 September in London.
Principal Lecturer in Journalism at the University of Hertfordshire, Sharon Maxwell Magnus, will be presenting a historical study of how female MPs have been portrayed in the media, including exploring how their coverage differed from their male counterparts. The lecture will also investigate whether many of the media challenges faced by female MPs in the past are still an issue in the age of social media and #MeToo.
'Women MPs formed a very small minority of MPs until recently, so you would imagine that the media would rush to cover them. In fact, they were often ignored and, when they were covered it was often in terms of their looks and even handbags. I’ll be exploring how they both overcame, but sometimes also played to the stereotypes and also whether today we are still living with that legacy,' said Sharon Maxwell Magnus.
Hosted jointly by Parliament’s Vote 100 project, the History of Parliament Trust and the University of Westminster, the conference is taking place at the Palace of Westminster & University of Westminster. It will also include contributions from previous and current women MPs.