Through the interwoven stories of women from three time periods, Women’s Work: Suffrage Movements 1848-1965 will recount the history of the movements that led to the ratification of the 19th amendment giving women the right to vote and the passage of the Voting Rights Act of 1965 which helped secure voting rights for minorities. Rather than force separate narratives into a perfect line of progress, this comic will explore the diversity and cyclical nature of these struggles. The project will take visual cues from printed ephemera of the three different eras and will unfold in distinctly different styles, sometimes in three dimensions as banners and counterfeit ephemera. The story will remain rooted in research and history but magical realist elements will visualize and hyperbolize major themes in popular suffrage histories and tackle the racist undertones, infighting and female stereotypes perpetuated in the fight for suffrage. The comic will examine what is lost in the erasure of nuance for the sake of political expediency and remind us that Women’s Suffrage was not an inevitable mark of progress. Women fought, lost, fought, won, and fought again. — Caitlin Cass, 2019
Caitlin Cass makes comics, drawings and counterfeit historical exhibits. She publishes a bi-monthly comic periodical under the moniker The Great Moments in Western Civilization Postal Constituent. Her comics have also appeared in The New Yorker and The Public. She was awarded a 2018 NYSCA/NYFA fellowship in fiction. Caitlin lives and works in Buffalo and teaches art at Buffalo Seminary.