1946, Italians vote: except for "wandering" prostitutes and cloistered nuns

The first female vote was not in the referendum of 2 June, as many believe, but in the local elections of 10 March 1946, with a turnout of 89 per cent. But it was not a first for all
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To women "???????? ????????????????????????????????" vote for the first time in Italy ???????? ???????????????????? ???????????? ????????????????, and not on 2 June as many people think, for local elections, the first ballot boxes in Italy ???? after the ???????????????? of ???????????????????????????? ???????????????????????? ???????????????????????????????? in the country liberated from fascism and ???????????????????????????????????????????? ????????????????????????????. Only ???????? ???????????????? ???????? the Italians were able to ???????????????????????? e ???????????????????????? ????????????????????????.

The first request for women's suffrage came from the Women's Voting Commission of ????????????, the Italian Women's Union, which was set up on the initiative of some members of the movement ????????????????????????????????????????????????: it was supported by the representatives of the ???????????????????????? ???????????????????????????????????? ???????????? ???????????????? ???????????????????????????? and the National Pro-Vote Committee, which brought together the main organisations.

Shortly before, ???????? ???????????????????????????? ???????????? ???????????????? -with Europe still at war and ???????????????? ???????????????????????? ???????????????????? ???????????????????????????????????????????? ????????????????????????????- a meeting of the Council of Ministers discussed women's suffrage, which was hastily approved as something ???????????????????? or, at that point, inevitable.

The decree, signed by the Lieutenant General of ???????????????????? ????'???????????????????????? ???????????????????????????? ???????? ???????? ????????????????????????, came into force on ???? ????????????????????????????????: they could vote ???????????????????? ???????????? ????????ù ???????? ???????? ???????????????? with the exception of prostitutes ???????????? ???????????????????????????????????????????????? "???????? ????????????????????????????????????????" off ???????????????????????? ????????????????????????????????????????????, while those in brothels were allowed to vote.

At the time, brothels, called 'brothels', were legal. They were outlawed in 1958 by ???????????????? ????????????????????????, which also abolished the regulation of prostitution by introducing the ???????????????????? ???????? ???????????????????????????????????????????????? ???? ????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????.

???????????????? ???????????????????????? was the first woman to be ???????????????????????? ???????? ???????????????????????? ???????????????????? ???????????????????????????????????????? and to her we owe the protection of women enshrined in ????????????. ???? of the Italian Constitution: "All citizens...are equal before the law, regardless of ????????????????????". Today laws such as Zan aim to trample on theidentity of ???????????????????????? in legislation, belittling or aiming to replace gender, whereby we are protected as women.

In the first decree, however (that of 30 January), a not insignificant detail was forgotten: ????'????????????????????????????????????????????à ???????????????????? ????????????????????.

"Oversight" that was not exactly a coincidence: The idea that if women won the right to be ???????????????????????????????????? they could also win the right to be ???????????????????????? worried men who saw their decision-making space reduced.

Their eligibility was only established by a ???????????????????????????? ????????????????????????????????????????, the ???????? number ???????????????????? ???????????? ???????????????? (one year later).

The decree established both the electoral system for the first post-war local elections and that women aged at least ???????? ???????????????? could elect and those with at least ???????? ???????????????? could be elected.

With the second decree also at ???????????????????? ???????? ???????????????????????????????? -at the time ???????????????????? ???????? ???????????????????????????????????? ???????? ????????????????????????????à and forgotten along with the "wandering" prostitutes - was granted a vow. Many of them had not left their convents for decades. "The cloistered nuns stood out, who, disciplined by their confessors, went to vote for the democratic lists." (L'Unità).

????????????????ò ???????????????????????? ???????? ???????????????????????????? ???????????? ???????? ???????????????????????????????????????? 'strays' - as they are called in the language of public security.

In 1947 (two years later), this last exclusion was also removed, reflecting a society steeped in respectability and hypocritically Catholic.

Women turned out for the administration en masse, and the general turnout exceeded 89%.

About 2,000 female candidates were elected to municipal councils, ???????? ???????????????????????????????????????????? in the lists of ????????????????????????????????.

The first female mayors in the history of Italy were also elected: ???????????????????????????????????????? ???????????????????? in Orune, in the province of Nuoro; ???????????????????????????? ???????????????????????????? in Borutta, in the province of Sassari; ???????????? ????????????????????????, in Massa Fermana, in the province of Fermo; ???????????????????????????? ???????????????????????????? in Veronella, in the province of Verona; ???????????????????? ???????????????????????????? in Fanano, in the province of Modena; ???????????????????? ???????????????????????????? ???????????????????? in Tropea, then in the province of Catanzaro.

Contrary to popular belief, ???????????????????????????????????? ???????????????????????????????????? did not make its debut with the referendum of 2 June 1946 on the choice between ???????????????????????????????????????? ???? M????????????????????????????????, and that recorded the same large participation by women.

History teaches us that women have always had to fight for the basic rights that men are given at birth.. For women, however, there is always a kind of 'double-check', i.e. a doubly strict evaluation of rights, which are 'granted' rather than recognised.

The resistance that power exerts in the face of female desire and will is most strikingly manifested in the fact that women must regularly ask for their wishes to be 'heard'. 

For many women, active in the Resistance or in health care work at the front, used by male domination for its own expansionist goals, the post-war period was a return to the domestic space, and certainly this created no small amount of discontent.

Sara Punzo

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