• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month
  1. 1
  2. 2
  3. 3
  4. 4
  5. 5
  6. 6
  7. 7
  8. 8
  9. 9
  10. 10
  11. 11
  12. 12

The changing role and status of women in Britain since 1900

Extracts from this document...


The changing role and status of women in Britain since 1900 1. How useful is Source A as evidence about attitudes to Suffragettes in 1908? Explain your answer using Source A and knowledge from your studies. In one respect Source A is a useful source because it is a photograph and photographs are usually brilliant as evidence because what is shown in the photograph was actually there and did actually happen. Source A states that 200 000 people are said to have attended the march. This figure may not be accurate, the Suffragettes may have provided this estimate for the newspapers. This gives you the impression that their demonstrations were very popular, and that a lot of Suffragettes participated in these movements. Also from the photograph you can see that there are not only women taking part in these demonstrations, but men as well, this shows that some males did support the Suffragettes and took them seriously. The photograph implies that the Suffragettes were quite organized with their marches, and came ready with Suffragette flags, to help with their protest. However, the policeman pictured in the photograph is a big hint that there may have been violence during these protests. From my own knowledge I know that the police force was needed because I know that the Suffragettes used violent methods during their protests. I know that the Suffragettes threw stones, spat and even smashed windows to try and get what they wanted- the vote. There are obvious gaps in this source, and it is very misleading, as these suffragettes are not carrying out any of these violent acts. This source is biased because the Suffragettes in this picture are shown holding bouquets of flowers and are portrayed as peaceful, harmless women. I know from my own knowledge that this source is not very useful because it doesn't show the violent side to the Suffragettes- and what they were really like during their protests. ...read more.


In 1918 the government gave some concessions to women by allowing a partial franchise. They gave the vote only to women above the age of thirty who owned their own homes or were married to a man who owned the marital home, graduates of British universities and women who were qualified but not graduates. This was called the 'Representation of the People Act' and became law in February 1918. This law obviously resulted in a minority of British women being given the right to vote, thus resulting in far more men being allowed to vote than women, yet at the same time appeasing those groups like the Suffragette movement. Thousands of men who had volunteered to fight for their country had accidentally lost the right to vote. This was potentially embarrassing to the government, so plans were made to give them back their vote: and to reward women for their war work by giving them their limited measure of women's suffrage, as I mentioned above. This could have been another reason as to why women gained the vote because of the First World War. Once the war had ended the jobs that the women had been doing had to be passed back over to the men. Many women were disappointed at this as they were losing their independence that they had become so used to. It may have been that the government gave the women the vote in compensation for losing their war time jobs. The war effort carried out by the women may have been what made the government decide to give them the vote. If it was the work carried out by the women during the war, then you can see that they did it unknowingly. The women of Britain carried out the work during the war because it was their duty to help. Probably without realizing it the women proved to the government that they were capable, and hard working, when given the chance to show it. ...read more.


Perhaps the government just decided that the vote for women was the next logical step. At that time industry was growing, and more and more jobs for women were becoming available. For example more department stores were being opened therefore meaning that more female sales assistants were needed, also telephones were becoming more widely used, meaning call centres were being opened. Women went into more jobs like secretaries in offices. Jobs like these were seen as women's jobs. Maybe the government saw that women were becoming more independent, and it was time to give them the vote. This is a picture showing a woman working as a secretary. This shows just one of the alternative jobs that women were starting to go into. This may have been what led to the government giving women the vote. In spite of many women gaining new found employment there was still much hardship, as women's pay, and conditions of service did not equal men's. Although the Suffragette movement campaigned for votes for women it was clear that most women wanted the vote, not in order to become political activists, but to improve their daily lives. This is explained in Source G of the coursework booklet. After studying this topic for such a long time I have weighed up my evidence and I believe that the Suffragette movement was mainly responsible for gaining the vote for women. At the end of the First World War the government was highly unpopular. Many young men had been unnecessarily killed. The electorate blamed the government for many of these deaths. There was great unrest in the country and the last thing the government needed was the Suffragettes resuming their campaign for votes for women. The government sought to regain some of its popularity amongst the electorate by giving some women suffrage, at the same time saving face by using the war effort as an excuse, rather than admitting it was the Suffragette movement, and their unpopularity that had led to the passing of the Representation of the Peoples Act in 1918. ?? ?? ?? ?? Rosie Grady 1 ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Britain 1905-1951 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 GCSE Britain 1905-1951 essays

  1. How did world war one change the role and status of women in England ...

    after dealing with the harmful TNT their skin began to turn yellow and their hair became ginger. With this they became easily recognised and were given the nickname of "Canaries". The long-term effects however were much worse than they initially thought; many women were unable to become pregnant.

  2. Why did women fail to gain the vote between 1900-1914?

    cued for hours and lads as young as 14 wanted to sign up and often lied to get in. Even more of an incentive was that the army had set up 'Pals regiments', which were made up of streets, football teams and in some cases whole school years.

  1. How important were Haig's tactics in bringing an end to WW1?

    de-code German radio messages, so when they heard Scheer giving his coded radio orders they were able to make plans of their own. Scheer sent his bate on May the 31st, about 121 km (75 mi) off the Danish coast of Jutland in the Skagerrak.

  2. The Changing roles of women

    by their new found earning power, the social life...these women will not want to return to their domestic duties after the war.' The war had brought women their own money and independence, something that many of them had never had before.

  1. Changes in the role of women in society 1900-1970.

    This fuelled very much by the changing musical and media scene. Artist such as Bob Dylan and Jimi Hendrix writing, taking and even supporting the use of drugs in there careers, advertising it to the people they played to and who bought there records and merchandise.

  2. The Struggle for the emancipation Of women-explain how and why The methods of the ...

    This was called institutional inequality. But by 1870 women were allowed to have custody of their children when their husband dies and could keep their own earnings. This was a big step for women, as they were considered responsible enough to take on such responsibilities.

  1. Haig Coursework

    *Question 4: Tanks were first used in the Battle of the Somme. Using these sources and your own knowledge assess the historians' verdicts on Haig's decisions to use tanks. Sources 6 and 7 both have different opinions when tanks were first used at the battle of the Somme.

  2. The Changing Role and Status of Women in Britain

    This was excellent for improving the situation of women but not so good for some men who had a great interest in things staying the same, men might have to share more of the power and money with women, and marring someone with a rich family would no longer assure them of their wife's inheritance.

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