Why had women failed to achieve the right to vote by 1914 but had succeeded 4 years later?

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Why had women failed to achieve the right to vote by 1914 but had succeeded 4 years later?

The women’s suffrage movement began in earnest from 1866 when the first women's suffrage societies were formed in London and Manchester. Their aim was to highlight the issues surrounding women's suffrage and persuade Parliament to give women the vote. The years to come leading up to 1918 when they eventually got the vote saw many differing tactics deployed by the women to aid their want for universal female suffrage, ranging from getting themselves arrested, hunger striking and even at the most extreme end, getting killed in search of what they had long envisaged. It is arguable that the most important event in the suffragette movement was the outbreak of the First World War, where the women became a prominent figure in the war effort.

The first properly organised party to campaign nationally for the rights of female suffrage was the NSWS which was formed in 1868, it was an amalgamation of locally based groups which had developed during the 1860’s. The activities of these early groups were peaceful and it was not until 1906 when these groups began to use militant tactics in which to get there message across and cause political harm to the government. The first militant act took place in the run up to the 1906 election, this first phase of militant action was in the response to an apparent lack of progress by the government to listen and take note of what the suffragettes wanted. In this first phase no violence was used by the suffragettes, an example of their tactics was seen in 1906 when a group of women attempted to intervene in a parliamentary debate, with one women shouting “divide, divide” and brandishing banners marked “voted for women”. The event helped gain the movement high levels of publicity.

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The first instance of phase two of the militant campaign was seen in Rally organised by the suffragettes in June 1908. Phase of the campaign was categorized by a greater willingness on behalf of the women to use violence against property and “technical” violence against the authorities in provoke arrest. The rally which became known as the “women’s Sunday march” was in support of the government following Asquith saying that he would back an electoral reform bill worded in such a way that would allow an amendment introducing women’s suffrage.

Phase two ended when the WSPU announced a suspension of ...

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