Quinn relays Cassatt’s friendship with Louisine Havemeyer, “an avid art collector and powerhouse suffragist.” Quinn writes:
On long afternoon walks, Havemeyer and Cassatt discussed everything that was wrong in the world and how they would fix it. Women’s suffrage was essential. “If the world is to be saved, it will be the women who save it,” Cassatt agreed. I like to picture them hiking the hilly countryside in their big hats and long skirts. Cassatt thin and walking with a cane, Havemeyer energetic and sure-footed, both of them gray-haired and elegant, a living Impressionist picture. And like Impressionism, though offering a pretty picture, these dames were rebels cackling beneath their parasols.
In 1912 Havemeyer had thrown a successful double-billing, an El Greco/Goya show, to raise money for suffrage. She decided she’d do it again with a modern master: Degas. But she realized a suffrage exhibit without a woman artist was wrongheaded. (Yes.) She asked if Cassatt would join Degas. More than willing, Cassatt liked the idea of poking a feminist finger in Degas’s patriarchal eye.