Catherine Elizabeth Marshall to Franz Matsch, August 27, 1921



August 27th, 1921.

Herr Matsch,
Bundesministerium für Auseres,

Dear Herr Matsch,

Thank you very much for sending me your pamphlet on the League of Nations, which I shall read with interest.

I am looking forward to seeing you when you come to Geneva. The Maison Internationale is only two minutes' walk from the Salle de la Reformation, where the Assembly meets.

I have not seen who have been appointed Delegates from Austria. I do hope that they include at least one member who is in touch with modern trends of political thought and believes in the "new diplomacy" rather than old methods. It is also important that every delegation -- and perhaps particularly important in the case of Austria at the present moment -- should include at least one member who is an economist. And I do hope that Austria will include a woman amongst the representatives it sends to Geneva, if not as a full delegate at any rate as an alternate or a technical adviser. There are certain questions on the agenda in which a woman's point of view in the Assembly would be particularly valuable, notably the Report of the Commission of Enquiry with regard to the Deportation of Women and Children in Turkey and adjacent countries (item 14), the Report of the International Conference on Traffic in Women and Children (item 15), the Report of the Health Commission of the League (item 12), the Report of the International Blockade Committee (item 9). Of course it is true that all political questions affect women quite as much as men, but those I have mentioned have a special bearing on the lives and fate of women and children, and the discussion of them is likely to lead to more useful and practical results if there are some women taking part in it.

All those of us who welcome Austria's admission into the League of Nations desire very much that her representatives should make a mark -- and a good mark -- on this, the first occasion when they take a public part in the Assembly. I feel sure that, owing to the circumstances, whatever the Austrian spokesmen say will receive particular attention. I believe also that at present, whilst the participation of women in international politics is still something of a novelty, anything that is said by a woman delegate will receive particular attention. (It was so last year in the case of Fräulein Henni Forchhammer.) That is a utilitarian reason for Austria to send a woman delegate which may appeal to your Government, even if other reasons I have mentioned will not.

I hope you will not think it impertinent of me to make these [page 2] suggestions. I am so anxious that Austria should both do the best for herself in the League of Nations, and also set us western countries a good example of how the League should be used. The hope for the future of the League lies in the smaller countries rather than in the larger ones.

With kind regards,

Yours sincerely,

(Sgd.) C. E. M.