Louise-Marie Compain's career as a feminist novelist led her naturally into the women's rights movement (see her introduction in part 2). After publishing her second novel, L'Opprobre ( Disgrace), she devoted much of her time and energy to two issues: women's suffrage and women's work.
Compain was a member of the founding committee of the society that organized mass suffragism in France, the Union française pour le suffrage des femmes ( French Union for Women's Suffrage, or UFSF). 1 She served as a member of the UFSF executive committee throughout the prewar period; for several years (a period of rapid expansion), she served as publicist for the union. As an officer of the UFSF, Compain participated in the 1911 convention of the International Women's Suffrage Alliance (IWSA) in Stockholm and numerous meetings in France. She valued the international network she encountered and consequently became an officer of Marya Chéliga's Permanent Congress of International Feminism. Her job as publicist for the UFSF required Compain to place articles about these activities in the French press, and she succeeded in placing feminist news in such unsympathetic papers as Le Matin. 2 This work led, in turn, to Compain becoming a columnist for La Petite République in 1912, greatly expanding the reach of feminist journalism.
At the same time that she served the suffrage movement so energetically, Compain also devoted herself to women's work and labor law, lecturing and writing on the conditions of working-class women. Although she generally argued the socialist position on such questions, her role in the labor movement provoked controversy and criticism from the leaders of the French