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I will look at whether or not the actions of the suffragettes harmed rather than aided the campaign of the votes for women.The sources I will be examining is a very wide range of sources from many different perspectives

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Introduction

During the period up to 1918 many women in England campaigned for the vote for themselves. Many people joined this campaign, joining either the suffragists or the suffragettes, the more militant organisation. I will look at whether or not the actions of the suffragettes harmed rather than aided the campaign of the votes for women. The sources I will be examining is a very wide range of sources from many different perspectives and so must be looked at carefully. An interesting source to begin with is source C. It was written by a women who has worked hard for women's equality and used to be a suffragette herself. She left the suffragettes because she believed that the Pankhursts were arrogant middle class women who were turning the focus away from actual women's equality and concentrating on getting the vote as their only goal. She also believes that the working classes have been excluded and alienated by the Pankhursts from the movement when it was they who started it in the first place, "It has gradually edged the working class element out of the ranks." She uses a lot of emotive language to describe the suffragettes in this piece, "Socially exclusive, punctiliously correct." ...read more.

Middle

She talks about the Second World War being a crucial factor in the victory for the vote, "Undoubtedly the large part taken by women during the war . . .". She also mentions the threat of revolution at the time as a factor in the suffragette's success, that the pressure of communism and change, "reverberating from Russia across Europe," could have been a deciding factor in the minds of politicians. She warns that the militant campaign would return if they were ignored. This is an important point, as the government would have needed women to help re-build the country after the war. Sources J and I are both government documents referring to the suffragette's campaign. Source I is a record of a debate in the House of Lords, one of the views is shared with the previous source that the pre-war violence will once again return to Britain if this problem is not properly addressed. He is afraid that the politicians against the suffragettes could be murdered, "if any of our colleges had taken a prominent line either for or against the grant of the vote to women had been assassinated in the street." He states that there have been no murders so far but that the, "Invincible wing," the radicals of the party, would act and cross that line. ...read more.

Conclusion

Other sources would have to be studied before I could come to any sort of conclusion. The source written by Pugh entitled "Votes for Women" clearly argues that the suffragettes harmed rather than aided the campaign for the women's vote in Britain, "militant methods fail to shake the government's view on suffrage,". Many aspects of his argument are relevant, however, it was the militant actions of the suffragettes that did indeed propel their cause into the headlines and kept it there for a long time. Although the government could not give into to the militant campaign at the time, after it ceased during the war they were given the goal that they had waited on for so long, the vote for women. This would not have been possible without the actions of the suffragettes, which made the government see that women really were serious about their campaign. Many of these sources were very diverse in that they give a lot of different views and many of them come from sources that may seen not to be reliable historical evidence. So, other sources would have to be studied on the subject before a clear and concise conclusion can be reached answering the question, did the suffragettes harm their own campaign. ?? ?? ?? ?? Phil Durrant Women Sources Essay - 1 - Word Count: 1,283 ...read more.

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