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

The Suffragettes & The Suffragists.

Extracts from this document...


The Suffragettes & The Suffragists The Suffragettes and The Suffragists were two parties which campaigned to let women have the right to vote, and the same political rights as men however, they had very different ways of approaching this. The suffragists used non-violent direct action in their quest for the vote, whilst the Suffragettes used direct and at times militant action to aid their cause. By 1887, societies called the WSPU and the NUWSS had been set up by people such as Lydia Becker and Millicent Fawcett. The NUWSS sent letters to politicians, organised petitions, published newspapers and distributed free literature. The NUWSS did not only campaign for the vote; they stood to help other causes aswell, such as the prevention of white slavery. Members of the NUWSS felt they were restricted and were no longer willing to restrict itself to the constitutional methods being applied. Because of this, they set up the WSPU (women's social and political union) and wanted to use more militant style action. The NUWSS refused to criticise their former members however, as they admired their courage. They thought that violent action would alienate the other suffrage groups and not progress work towards the vote, as the government would not deal with them, or they ...read more.


The government however refused to negotiate. If they were to do so, it would almost certainly encourage others like the suffragettes; to use force and attack them in attempts to gain what they wanted, making the government appear weak. They would have appeared vulnerable giving in to any forceful request, despite however strongly the country or other political sections opposed it. Added to Parliament's problems there was much unrest in the industrial sector with strikes taking place and the low price factories were receiving for their products. There was also the Irish Home Rule campaign in which, the Irish demanded that their country should be handed back to them from the English. Many politicians were divided on whether to give women the vote. This was not the simple issue of granting them the right to do so or not, but who the women would vote for and the fact that many men and classes who could not vote. If certain women of a certain status were given the vote, the likelihood was that they would vote for different parties, while each party had a different reason for granting different groups the vote. ...read more.


Women had also set up their own organisations such as the WRNS (women's royal navy service) as well as the Women's Royal Air Force. These organisations were undertaking dangerous work, but were doing the jobs that were vital in the allies winning the war. This was the major factor in changing public view on the abilities of women and their claim to equal rights. Their work was essential and Asquith acknowledged this: "When the war comes to an end, have not the women a special claim to be heard on the many questions which will arise affecting their interests? I say quite frankly I cannot deny that claim. However, the effort by the women of Britain was highlighted more so by the Bolshevik revolution in Russia, led by Lenin. During this, the working classes had revolting against the government and had taken control of the country. The English government did not want a repeat of these scenes and so they granted a change in the electoral system. The register was changed due to this and the fact only about one in five soldiers lived at their old addresses. The lower working classes and women had been granted the vote after the war for the first time, due to their efforts. ...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 Politics 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 Politics essays

  1. Aims and Methods Used by the Suffragists

    Even at its peak in 1914, the WSPU only had about 2,000 members. The NUWSS was a much larger organisation and in 1914 had 500 local branches and over 100,000 members. Two days after the British government declared war on Germany on 4th August 1914, Millicent Fawcett declared that it was suspending all political activity until the conflict was over.

  2. Who would you vote for?

    On the other hand, the Lib Dems have promised to... 'reform the system so there would be fewer franchises. Each franchise would last longer than 7 years, even up to 20 years and to get the contract, companies would be required to promise to invest for the long term, to improve services.

  1. The actions of Nellie Hall alocal Birmingham Suffragette - Do the sources support the ...

    declining her showing that the government doesn't want women in the army because they aren't good enough to fight.

  2. Women's Suffrage.

    As Frances Power Cobbe put it in 1874: 'the picked class of women who would be admitted by Mr Bright's Bill to the franchise are needed to restore the just balance in favour of an educated constituency against the weight of the illiterate male voters now entrusted with the suffrage'.

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

    there own operations and putting forward their views in a sensible and rational manner. The magazine produced by the NUWSS was called 'The Common Cause'. These sorts of demonstrations were not always hugely effective and their effects might not be easily seen even to the suffragists themselves but they all

  2. Describe the ways in which the methods of the suffragists and suffragettes were different.

    This caused some factions of the movement to become dissatisfied with peaceful methods and to believe that the only way to gain the vote for women was by using more aggressive campaign methods. These women formed the Women's Social and Political Union (WSPU), also known as the Suffragettes who adopted

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

    They committed such illegal activities such as Arson attacks. The main reason for doing arson attacks was a response to the window smashing attacks but more severe. These arson attacks mainly started in the year 1914. When at least four major acts of arson were committed.

  2. How and why do bias' arise in the media?

    into line. Mrs. Thatcher called for the B.B.C. to be self sufficient although a committee chaired by Lord Peacock refused to endorse this. The Government also control the appointment of the Board of Governors and in 1986 appointed Duke Hussey its head, who was seen as a right winger.

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