First of all, on the one hand I do agree it was the work of the women during the war that earned them the vote. When the outbreak of the World War I in August 1914 the women’s suffrage campaigns to an abrupt halt. Women realized that the country had much more important issues to attend to. Both Suffragists and Suffragettes suspended their campaign but also gave them their greatest opportunity to win the vote. They thought if the contribute the government would them think about this more after the World War I ended.
Women played vital role performing jobs like nursing, industry work, transport and munitions productions as Source F shows that this was one of the job needed to be ruled, Source G also shows 5 different jobs which women completed in the war “Metal, industries, chemical industries, government offices, food, drink and tobacco. But, before in 1914 when war began women were not allowed to work because the government believed that women should not do this but this changed in 1915 for two reasons. he first reason they were massive shortage of munitions on the Western front as all men were needed to fight and Britain the big empire had the smallest army where it’s allies had many more. Britain artillery was rationed to firing only a few shells a day, while the opposition pounded the front lines non-stop. Secondly, the suffragettes led a huge demonstration to Whitehall in July, for not letting women contribute “We Demand the Rights to Serve. ” David Hyoid George saw this opportunity to fill the empty spaces in the workplace.
One job that was seriously needed was the munitions as some women’s didn’t like to do this job as they were much better jobs like nurses. One thing the government did was that they created a poster which persuaded women’s to join. They were using such words like “On her lives depend” as well as showing women as caring and helpful so this made women feel that she was doing the work Alone so was needed to work with her and they “Enrol at once. ” Once the government started to employ women, the rest of the country followed quickly.
For many years’ working class women from poor homes working hard was nothing new. But now large numbers of middle class, and even some upper classes entered, as derks, bus drivers, land workers and engineers. They dug coal, drove vans, worked crane and over one million women worked as munitions workers were making vital guns, bullets and weapons for men. In source G, it shows the number of women employed in Britain and that’s why in ‘July 1918′ there was so many women work during 1914.
This shows the government does think women’s take responsible. But, ion Britain, they were still some women that could help but many of them was stopped by there family but some ran away which increased the number of women employed. Later, during 1917 onwards women were now allowed to enlist to other many exciting jobs which also increased the employment. They were jobs like Women’s Auxiliary Army Corps (W. A. A. C), Women’s Royal Navy Services (Wrns), Women’s royal Air Force (W. R. A. F), Women’s Volunteer Police Service and Women’s Land Army.
However the exciting jobs women got there was one thing that was bad about this; conditions in these types of works were appalling. In Munitions factories were extremely dangerous when working in TNT or in shell filling shops. They did not get proper food and were sleeping in the most undesirable conditions. But, women did not look at this; they wanted to show people that they were important to the war effort, responsible enough to work like men and a lot of courage and grip along determination. Through their war effort, women gained a freedom and responsibility they had never enjoyed before.
In source H, I and J they all say about granting women the vote after the war ended. Source H, from a history book called “women’s Suffrage in Britain, 1967-1928’ written in 1980 shows that women should get a reward for “loyal wartime services. ” Their hard work paid off as newspaper were writing about them and getting warm welcome from everyone. Women changed men’s attitude which is shown in Source H, “men felt very glad if women became nurses, provided of refreshments for the troops and brought up the fighting men of the future.
In Source H, Politicians agreed that their reward should be giving the right to vote but the age limit was 30. (The other source says the same thing) However, Source I, written in 1980, shows both views, that it was the campaigns and war effort. They say “that war brought votes for women is to make a very rough generality” but they also don’t want to isolate the women’s rights “during the four years of conflict a tremendous mood favourable to change had been created. ” Source J a speech by Herbert Asquith in the House of Commons in 1917 also supports the Source H and I, they are similar.
Source J says, even if Herbert was against the “women’s right to vote,” the women changed Herbert attitude during the war, Herbert did not like the Suffragettes campaign because of the violence. Because women showed that they are responsible enough in the war, Herbert then believed “that some measure of women’s suffrage should be given. ” These source supports the women war effort was the one that gave women the vote. On the other hand, I disagree that the work of the women in the war that earned them the vote, there were other important factors that need to be considered.
Firstly, the woman’s suffrage brought awareness of giving the right to vote for the government. The women’s suffrage campaign was fought hard and to their get this was unbelievable and this opportunity cannot be ruined or wasted. The campaign to win the right to vote for women began in 1850’s. There was a mass movement where women wanted to vote in parliamentary elections and sit in Parliament because they sought equality with men. Parliament was the most powerful institution in the Land. The government operated through Parliament and all new laws were made there.
In 1890, a notional organisation was formed called the National Union of women’s Suffrage Societies (NUWSS). The NUWSS used moderate tactics. Writing books and pamphlets, holding peaceful meetings, organised speeches and supporting MP’s who backed their cause. This organisation was mainly middle-class and working class women. Since, the women’s demander suffrage were processing as they were allowed to vote in County and Borough elections in 1888and they also allowed to become local councillors in 1907.
However, this was far more than many men wanted to grant women whom they said could be trusted to vote sensibly, and that they should leave such matters to their husbands. Later, some women believed that the Suffragist movement with their peaceful tactics was lacking any progress and were refused by the government. Also the newspapers were now, not taking any notice of them and ignoring it. The women’s suffrage was refused 15 times up to 1900. So in 1903, fed up with the Suffragist lack of progress, Emmeline Pankhurst and her daughters Christa formed the Women’s Social and Political Union (WSPU).
Emmeline Pankhurst also felt that the NUWSS was being turn down by the government, even though women in Australia (1902) and New Zealand (1893) had won the vote. At the start of the Suffragette campaign they first followed the NUWWS in concentrating on parliament. They belived that by peaceful putting them into a big pressure on the sympathetic Liberal Party politician then after the next election in 1906 they would support women’s suffrage. In 1905, a meeting took place about the Anti-Suffrage Society as Source B shows.
In Source B it shows how women really wanted this, “chiefly of ladies” were “at the Queen’s Hall” where Mr. Maconochie spoke against them. Many women applauded him even though he was against them and they were supposed to get the vote. Women understood his point of view, which shows women were not as greedy together to vote the do understand. In 1906, when the Liberal Party won the election with the support of the women’s suffrage. The hope of the women’s suffrage increases believing that finally is going to end with having won the right to vote. But the cabinet refused. Now, the Suffragettes began a militant campaign. The WSPU’s motto was “deeds, not words.
Some of its members were prepared to use limited violence to draw attention to the unions cause, including throwing eggs at politicians, setting fire to post boxes and chaining themselves to rails. They also belived, protesters should be ready to go to prison if necessary, to force the government to listen. The leader of WSPU started using this violence, when in 1909 suffragettes were arrested, then the suffragettes started going on hunger strike and were force fed by the prison authorities. Many people were shocked by the Suffragettes militant tactics but for one thing they kept women’s suffrage in the news.
The suffragette campaign surprisingly, increased the popularity of the NUWSS, women did not like the violent tactics, women were fearful of breaking the law and upsetting their family as source C shows. Source C is telling as that the mother left the house to fight for the right to vote and her two children is upset, crying doing the mother’s job. The small girl on the floor holds a toy that indicates a women fighting for the vote, but the father is not impressed after she left the note “back in a hour or so” because the candle is out. This shows women are working hard to get this vote.
Also, it made many men come to oppose the militant Suffragettes. As time went, the parliament the public took notice of the Suffragettes. There seemed to be other important moves that parliament needed to take notice of. The Irish Catholics were trying to get independence for Ireland and there were many strikes by industrial workers by industrial workers and mines. In 1911, the Parliament debated on the Conciliation Bill whether women would finally get the vote. This however failed when they changed their minds to put women’s rights in the new law in 1912.
Hundred’s of women were very upset and fought the police which caused them to be arrested. The Suffragettes began extreme militant and violence as Source D says. Source D was a book by Emmeline Pankhurst she belived she waited enough to. For this cause by peaceful methods after refusal of the women’s rights so now they will use militant and violence “so, now we will fight for our cause. ” They started to smash window, smashing famous valuable paintings, cut telephone wires, burn up lost boxes and public buildings, tore up golf greens.
Many men were really unhappy and outrageous, they could not enjoy their time were such violent was happening. One tragedy which shocked everyone was at the Derby horse race in 1903. A Suffragette called Emily Watson, dashed onto the king’s horse. The women laid seriously injured. Her skull was fractured by the flying hooves. Emily Davidson died shortly afterwards without regaining consciousness Source E shows a photograph of it. This shows how extreme Suffragette was becoming violent, suicide. Men though this was like a terrorist act.
NO one thought that the violence would lead to deaths and many people couldn’t believe this. In prison, Suffragettes went on hunger again. They refused to eat which will soon cause death but the government had a solution and introduced the “Prisoner’s Temporary Release, free her if she went to hunger strike and became ill until their health was restored they re-arrested them. Many women went into hiding to avoid being caught, like mice. Afterwards, Suffragettes soon found ways of making this unworkable.
Many people belived that the Suffragettes campaign did more disaster than any progress to the cause of the women’s suffrage, as they were being told as irresponsible women. Many people, such as MP’s were now more against it but meanwhile the NUWSS worked harol to win back support of the public. But something struck them, WW1 began which cause the campaign to stop and contribute to war. All this hard work for very long time cannot be forgotten. In my conclusion, I believe that the work that women did during the war that earned them the vote.
However, the women’s suffrage did the Suffragette campaign The war effort really changed men’s mind, because showed the right way how women should be in the war. Men really liked this, and wanted more and as a reward gave the rights to vote. Also, I believe the NUWWS did also help because people like the way their used their tactics but was disturbed by the Suffragettes (WSPU). If there wasn’t a Suffragettes campaign then the war effort would just be a catalyst to speed the process. The NUWWS, by themselves would have progressed but it would have taken a very long time.