What were the experiences and perceptions?

A victim of forced feeding

When Lady Constance Lytton visited Liverpool in 1910, she disguised herself as a working class woman because she wanted to see how poorer suffragettes were being treated. Constance was sentenced to 14 days in prison for throwing rocks at the car of an MP. She went on hunger strike for four days, after which she was subjected to being fed by force. Here is her account of that experience:

"He (the doctor) said if I resisted so much with my teeth, he would have to feed me through the nose. The pain of it was intense and at last I must have given away for he got the gag between my teeth, when he proceeded to turn it much more than necesary until my jaws were fastened wide apart, far more than they would go normally. Then he put down my throat a tube... The irritation of the tube was excessive. I choked the moment it touched my throat until it got down. Then the food was poured in quickly; it made me sick a few seconds after it was down and the action of the sickness made my body and legs double up, but the wardresses instantly pressed back my head and the doctor leant on my knees. The horror of it was more than I can describe".

 

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