Born: 1860 / Died: 1935
Role in League:
Co-founder of Central League
Settlement worker and reformer
Jane Addams was born into a wealthy Illinois family and well educated, first in an all-girls seminary school and later in Philadelphia at the Women's Medical College, though she never earned a degree in medicine. Addams is most famous for the establishment of Hull House, a settlement home for women in Chicago, the first of its kind in the United States. Settlement homes were conceived as a means to bridge the gap between rich and poor in urban areas. Operated by settlement workers, they offered the impoverished food and shelter. Often settlement homes brought in school teachers or trades people to teach residents. Hull House opened in 1889 and grew to include a gym, garden, and library for the residents. It marked the beginning of more than 20 years of this sort of activism and is one of the great examples of the era of progressive thinking. Addams was more than a settlement worker, though. She was a reformer of all sorts, including a suffragette, a lobbyist with close connections to national politicians, and a peace advocate. It was as a peace advocate that Addams most closely connects with anti-imperialism. Before famously opposing World War I and leading the Women's International League for Peace and Freedom, Addams helped to found the Central Anti-Imperialist League and serve as one of its vice-presidents. This was by no means a small feat. The anti-imperialist movement was dominated by strong male personalities and Addams was, perhaps, the most prominent female activist. For her, like so many other activists including League president George Boutwell, imperialism was synonymous with militarism and war. She spoke out often against both. Long after the anti-imperialist movement ended and the fighting of World War I subsided, Addams was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for her resiliency in opposing war.
Jane Addams: A Centennial Reader (New York: Macmillan, 1960).
Gail Bederman, Manliness and Civilization: A Cultural History of Gender and Race in the United States, 1880-1917 (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1995).
Robert L. Beisner, Twelve Against Empire: The Anti-Imperialists, 1898-1900 (New York: McGraw-Hill, 1968).
Helen Christine Bennett, American Women in Civic Work (New York: Dodd, Mead, and Co., 1919).
Myra Marx Ferree and David A. Merrill "Hot Movements, Cold Cognition: Thinking about Social Movements in Gendered Frames," Contemporary Sociology 29, no. 3 (May, 2000).
Kristin L. Hoganson, Fighting for American Manhood: How Gendered Politics Provoked the Spanish-American and Philippine-American Wars (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1998).
———, "As Badly Off As the Filipinos: U.S. Women's Suffragists and the Imperial Issue at the Turn of the Twentieth Century," Journal of Women's History 13, no. 2 (September, 2001).
Erin L. Murphy, "Women's Anti-Imperialism, 'The White Man's Burden' and the Philippine-American War: Theorizing Masculinist Ambivalence in Protest," Gender and Society 23, no. 2 (April, 2009).
Daniel B. Schirmer, Republic or Empire: American Resistance to the Philippine War (Cambridge, Schenkman Publishing Co., 1972).
Richard E. Welch, Response to Imperialism: The United States and the Philippine-American War, 1899-1902 (Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 1979).