• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

“Why did it take so long for women to achieve the franchise?”

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Evonne Buchan "Why did it take so long for women to achieve the franchise?" It was in 1928 that women after a tiring and long drawn struggle eventually gained the vote, and with it they achieved a greater sense of importance within society. The extension of the franchise to women at this time most importantly gave them the equality they desired with that of their male counterparts. It is wrong to state that women did not have the right to vote, some women were able to vote in local council elections, it was in parliamentary elections that women could not cast a vote, therefore had no power in parliamentary elections. The road to achieving the extension was one of trial and tribulation; they had many barriers to overcome and perceptions to shatter. Many factors hindered the path to the extension, at this time all men did not have the franchise; although some men supported women's suffrage most thought it was ludicrous to even consider extending the franchise when they were not entirely enfranchised themselves. The Victorian attitudes that were adhered to women seemed at most times irremovable; these included the perceptions of the role of women in marriage/ education and the economy. The lack of successful women's pressure groups also held back enfranchisement for women, this involved the minimalist effects of the suffragette movement. ...read more.

Middle

It is stated that 1.14 million women were involved in domestic service. Working in homes of the middle and upper class expending a vast amount of physical energy in order to maintain the upper class in an environment in which they were accustom to but the employees themselves were alien to. Low pay was a problem for most women in work generally earning half of that of a man's wage. Underpayment was seemingly the least of woman's worries, they also had to endure the worst of the factory system such as long hours and poor conditions in terms of light, ventilation and protection from dangerous toxic substances. Unfairly after a strenuous days work they were expected to return home, carry out domestic duties and serve their husbands. These misperceptions of women were hard to change, but in time to follow women were to show that they were not as fragile as once thought, the suffragette movement was to portray women in an entirely different manner. As mentioned previously the lack of successful pressure groups slowed enfranchisement. "The feminist movement" is the term given to refer to the efforts of women in the 19th century to improve their rights in law and society. The "Feminist movement" had no real organisation until the early twentieth century, and had no real starting date. The leaders were women from the upper class who had access to material resources and sufficient leisure time to enable them to pursue their various causes. ...read more.

Conclusion

Women took over the jobs that men had occupied before them, women were literally found in every profession, they undertook work in munitions factories showing that they were not as fragile or docile as once thought, they proved that they too could undertake hard physical labour. What the war did was to highlight the economic and strategic value of women to the state. The government could not deny the franchise to the women that had so gallantly carried on the war effort at home, although the government and men alike noticed their efforts it still took another ten years for the Representation of the People Act (1928) to be passed. All women over twenty one gained the vote, provided they had resided in Britain for six months. In conclusion it is clear that all factors discussed above hindered greatly the path to enfranchisement for women, the Victorian attitudes to women from men did not aid them in anyway when trying to further their place in society, it is also clear that the lack of successful female pressure groups did not totally break the barrier to enfranchisement for women. The outbreak of war killed off the momentum of the reform campaign, and delayed enfranchisement even further although it must be mentioned that when the war began many felt that the issue of the vote was miniscule in comparison with the current affairs. Women's suffrage was no dout achieved through piecemeal advancements but when it eventually did come the work and effort of women had paid off, equality was now theirs. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Work & Leisure section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level Work & Leisure essays

  1. To what extent do feminist theories remain relevant for interpreting gendered patterns of work.

    This demonstrates the amount of discrimination against women that is still, to the present day, apparent. However, to challenge the liberal feminist critique, there are some gaps which liberal feminist theory does not sufficiently address. With, presently, 2 in 5 women working part-time this means that there are also a

  2. Women in Victorian times compared to now

    Girls learned recipes, while boys studied math and science. Much of the education offered in girls' private schools was of a very low standard. Also, there was no integrated teaching. Girls learned from women and men taught boys. A college education appealed to older boys and the wealthy. Truly, girls were already looked upon as a lower class in this time period.

  1. To what extent did women become more emancipated in the period 1800-1914? In 1800 ...

    Towards the end of the 19th century and entering the 20th century the middle class had grown significantly. There was a significant gender imbalance, which led to many, more middle class women being employed, the birth rate also dropped during this time with the increased availability of contraception, this allows more women to be employed.

  2. May I Learn Too? Barriers Placed on Women in the Education System

    whereas manual crafts such as needle work, and other domestic courses would prepare them for the "working world" that waited ahead. Regardless of the field chosen, Wollestonecraft (1983) believed that the education of a women would help her in life long decisions such as choosing a mate, and living successfully within the society.

  1. How far did the educational opportunities for women improve during the 19th Century?

    time this has ever happened, making it the best advance I feel for women's education throughout the 19th century. Although there were some advances to women's education during the 19th century there is also evidence to counter this. A major area in which under the surface reform was not as progressive as it appeared was the 1870 education act.

  2. Comparing 19th and 20th Centaury Short Stories - Son's Veto and growing up.

    Further signs of a Christian based community. This story is presumably met with indignation which would show the Quicks are living in a society based on Christian morals but do not appear to have their lives revolving around it as is the case in Son's Veto. A major theme in Son's Veto is the role and status of women.

  1. Describe the employment opportunities of women in Britain in 1914 at the outbreak of ...

    Only ten percent of children attended after the age of twelve and only ten per cent of those ten per cent were girls. This meant only one percent of girls received secondary education. Hence, it was difficult for women to do much to improve their situation: they had fewer rights

  2. What were the lives of people like in the 19th century cities?

    Hospitals should be opened. A good idea would be to open military hospitals with public access. Since war was not an everyday thing before the world wars begun. That way the military hospitals would be available for all people most of the time.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work