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Describe the ways in which the methods of the Suffragists and the Suffragettes were different.

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Introduction

2) Describe the ways in which the methods of the Suffragists and the Suffragettes were different. Both the suffragists and the suffragettes originated from the same organisation - the National Union of Women's Suffrage Societies (NUWSS), which used peaceful methods to campaign for women's suffrage. However, many members became frustrated with the slow progress in achieving their goal, and so these members branched off to form the Women's Social and Political Union (WSPU). WSPU members wanted to use more forceful, even violent, methods to win the vote. Members of the WSPU became known as suffragettes, and members of the NUWSS were called suffragists. The WSPU started off as a peaceful organisation, but began to use more aggressive methods in 1905. The turning point occurred at the Liberal Party convention when Annie Kenney stood up and asked Churchill; "If you are elected, will you do your best to make Women's Suffrage a government measure?" ...read more.

Middle

The violence got worse. The suffragettes chained themselves to railings, and vandalised property by breaking windows. At a meeting in Birmingham, where Asquith was speaking, two suffragettes climbed onto the roof and threw slates through the glass roof of the hall. Lloyd George, who was actually a supporter of women's suffrage, was also picked on. For example, a suffragette locked herself in his car and gave him a lecture on women's suffrage. In 1913 suffragettes blew up part of his house. Not only did they hassle the politicians, but they also destroyed houses, churches, and art galleries. They set fire to letterboxes, almost burnt down the Theatre Royal Dublin, and one suffragette tried to blow up a cinema. Another of their methods was to go on hunger strikes so that they had to be force fed, which gave them more attention, and was good propaganda. ...read more.

Conclusion

They used tactics such as supporting candidates who were in favour of women's suffrage in elections, and in the 1906 elections, they put forward male candidates who supported them. These would compete with the Liberals who opposed giving women the vote. Also, for effectiveness, women were trained to speak at public meetings, so that more people would get involved. Their leader, Millicent Garret-Fawcett compared the NUWSS to a glacier - slow, but unstoppable. The two groups were very different, and after 1912 they were not able to work jointly. The suffragettes' methods were violent and militant, whereas the suffragists used peaceful, legal methods. The Women's Freedom League was a branch of the WSPU, but did not agree with the extreme amount of violence used. I think that both the suffragists and the suffragettes contributed to getting the vote in 1918. 736 words (inc. question) ...read more.

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