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The Struggle For The Emancipation Of Women

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The Struggle For The Emancipation Of Women Question 1 In this essay I am going to explain and compare progress that was made to secure women's rights between 1870-1900. I am going to explain and compare 4 different aspects of women's lives: educationally, legally politically and economically. Before 1870 the education for women was very poor as a matter of fact it was almost non-existent. There was very basic schooling at that time for all women. The working class if they were lucky would go to a Sunday school run in churches. There they would learn things like very basic reading and writing, they would learn about religion by reading the Bible, which would also help their reading skills. For middle class and some upper class women they most likely have a governess (what we would know as a tutor these days) with her they would learn how to read, write, languages and music. For some upper class women there was no need to learn because they wouldn't work and they weren't required to think. The changes started to happen in from 1870 onwards when elementary schools were created and all children had to go to school until the age of 9, a law was created stating that. Then public schools and colleges/universities such as 'Cheltenham Young Ladies College' were created for women. There is some debate over whether this was progress or not, the points for t to be counted as progress are that women started to think for themselves, girls and women were getting more included in activities. Now even working class girls were getting some education and middle class were getting decent educations. There were two very important and significant acts that happened around this time. Firstly the Forster's education act made all local authorities were required to build board schools to teach poor children and the Mundella's education act made school attendance compulsory between 5 and 10. ...read more.


One of the reasons was that they helped out by making munitions (shells). They were made all over Britain in places such as Woolwich, Leeds and Birmingham. This was the first job women had during the war and the most important. Over 1,000,000 worked in munitions!! The reason they were allowed to start working in munitions factories was because the British army were severely low on shells after 1915. They were down to firing a few shells a day while we were bombarded with shells non-stop. The reason the shortage developed was because the government let too many of the munitions workers go and fight so there was a shortage of workers. When the shortage occurred the women again started asking for their right to serve but it was denied again. So they made a very famous march to Whitehall where they demanded the right to serve their country. Adding to that Mrs Pankhurst asked for women's wage conditions to become fairer. The P.M. at the time David Lloyd George obliged and allowed them to start working and have equal wages. Women did not only make shells they did lots of other significant work to make up for all the men that left to fight. Although after a while some of them had to be brought back e.g. the miners were called back because they were very important to the country back in Britain. Other jobs that women did included joining the Red Cross Society's 'Voluntary Aid Detachment'. They came to be later knows as VAD's, an example of a famous VAD was Vera Brittain. The VAD's only had basic medical training so they could give soldiers basic medical treatment. Most families of the VAD's didn't mind them doing other jobs but they were strongly against them being VAD's. This was because they didn't want them to mix with lower classes - 'Tommies'. The only forms of painkiller the VAD's had at their disposal were aspirin and morphine. ...read more.


This was another good achievement in the education field and also to try and make more female doctors. Finally in 1902 after an eventful life she retired to Aldeburgh, but she kept her interest in politics and was elected mayor of Aldeburgh. (The first female mayor in England). This in m opinion was a really big triumph for women everywhere, for her to get such an important and prestigious job. At the age of seventy-two she joined the suffragettes in 1908 but she left three years later because she didn't like their arson campaign. This showed that even at her old age she still wanted to battle on for women's voting rights. She died at the age of eighty-one. She also had two other famous sisters, Millicent and Agnes. Millicent was of course leader of the N.U.W.S.S. and Agnes was a famous furniture designer. The reason I wrote about Elizabeth Garret Anderson was because she did a lot towards women becoming doctors and in the face of adversity (the government not letting her become a doctor) she came out victorious and if it wasn't for her maybe there wouldn't be as many female doctor as there are now. So a lot of credit needs to be given to her because she made a lot of advancements in medicine for women everywhere. She also was the first female mayor in England, which was also a major thing because that proved that men were starting to trust women's judgement. Therefore I conclude that neither side I argued for has a stronger case than the other. So before the war they were making progress and they might've got the vote but without their efforts in the war it may have taken them a longer time to prove just how important they were. In my opinion in the end justice prevailed and women were allowed to vote and gained their freedom . A portrait of Elizabeth Garret Anderson. Amit Kotecha 10/61 The struggle for the emancipation of women ...read more.

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