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Exhibition Shall Not Be Denied: Women Fight for the Vote

David Allen & Sons. Torturing Women in Prison. Vote Against the Government. London: National Women’s Social and Political Union., ca. 1909. Color lithograph. Prints and Photographs Division, Library of Congress (109.00.00)

“The Stomach Tube”

When denied political prisoner status, Alice Paul and labor organizer Rose Winslow began hunger strikes in the District Jail on November 5, 1917, to protest their unjust imprisonment and disproportional sentences. Prison officials responded with thrice-daily “forcible feeding,” illustrated in this British poster, by which a solution of milk and eggs was poured into a tube forcibly inserted in the nose or throat of a restrained prisoner. Paul, like Lucy Burns, had previously experienced this painful and demeaning punishment when imprisoned for suffrage activities in Britain.