Female Suffrage

Kwame Oteng-Adusei
Slide Set by Kwame Oteng-Adusei, updated more than 1 year ago
Kwame Oteng-Adusei
Created by Kwame Oteng-Adusei over 5 years ago


GCSE History (Britain 1890-1918) Slide Set on Female Suffrage, created by Kwame Oteng-Adusei on 02/16/2016.

Resource summary

Slide 1

    The Arguments For & Against Female Suffrage
    Votes for women would improve life for all women, e.g. equal working conditions, better access to education, etc. Australia and New Zealand had given women the right to vote in national elections and in the USA, women had the right to vote in some states Many women were already involved in politics at a local level, especially on boards of education and poor law boards Women paid the same rates and taxes as men, so they should be able to vote for the politicians who spend those taxes By the early 1900s, the vast majority of men could vote; Britain was not a democracy if 50% of the adult population could not vote 
    Women had different responsibilities or 'spheres'; men were suited to work and politics while women were suited to the home and caring roles Most did not want the vote or were not interested; they irrational and would not vote wisely Giving the vote to some women would mean giving the vote to all men, some of whom were not worthy Women did not fight in wars so they should not be able to vote for governments that might have to declare war

Slide 2

    Effectiveness of The Suffragists
    Failed to get the vote for women by 1914Built up an impressive organisation and membership: by 1914, the NUWSS had over 400 branches and over 100,000 membersConsisted of mainly middle-class women but there were also quite a few male members Managed to get women's suffrage bills proposed to Parliament several times between 1900 and 1914 e.g. Conciliation Bill(1910) - abandoned by the Liberals
    There were many societies campaigning for the vote in Britain during the 19th century. In 1897, the various societies came together to form the NUWSS , often called the suffragists. The NUWSS was led by Millicent Fawcett.Very good at propaganda - they made newsletters and posters, organised petitions and wrote letters to MPs; they held large rallies e.g. Hyde Park demonstration(1908) and the Women's Pilgrimage(June 1913)Kept the issue of women's suffrage in the public eye at a time when PM Asquith and many other MPs did not want to even consider the issue

Slide 3

    Suffragettes and their effectiveness
    name given to the WSPU founded in 1903 by Emmeline Pankhurst and her daughters Sylvia and Christabel more radical than NUWSS - frustrated by the lack of progress in the campaign to win women the right to vote direct action - intended to attract such publicity the government would end its opposition direct action began in 1908 with suffragettes breaking Downing Street windows and chaining themselves to railings WSPU called off violent protest in 1910 but began again in 1912 with a campaign of arson and vandalism after the Concilation Bill's failure 04/06/1913 - Emily Wilding Davison threw herself in front of King George V's horse at the Epsom Derby and was severely injured, dying 4 days later
    Didn't achieve vote by 1914 Divided the women's movement; from 1909 onwards, the suffragists distanced themselves from the suffragettes Suffragette violence turned some MPs and sections of public opinion against female suffrage Issue of female suffrage was never forgotten Effective campaigners, publishing poster and leaflets (their newspaper Votes for Women had a circulation of 40,000 by 1914) Many people admired their courage e.g. some were arrested and some went on hunger strike Police and government treated them very harshly Suffragettes were treated harshly in prison and went on hunger strike in protest but the government responded with force-feeding which was painful, degrading and potentially harmful - this gained them support and sympathy;Liberals then introduced the 'Cat and Mouse' Act(1913) - hunger strikers were released in order to recover then returned to finish their sentence
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