Edexcel history coursework-votes for women assignment one

Essay by HMSJunior High, 9th gradeA-, April 2008

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1. Why did a campaign for women’s suffrage develop in the years after 1870?There are a number of reasons as to why a campaign for women’s suffrage developed after the year 1870Firstly in the years before 1870, there were a number of radical changes which allowed more freedom for women. Firstly in 1869, single women were allowed to vote in town councils, and in 1870 the Married Women’s Property Act allowed women to keep their property when they got married.

These new changes allowed many women a taste of freedom and it also gave women a new sense of self worth. This left many women thinking if the government allowed women to vote in town councils and allowed women to keep their property why did they not allow them to vote? This spurred on more support for the Suffragists and for women’s suffrage.

Also during this time many professions often regarded as exclusively for men, were open for women to take up.

An example of this is in 1877 when Sophia Jex Blake became the first woman doctor. The education act in 1870 also brought many more female teachers to schools. Working class women also had a share, jobs such as shop assistants and factory workers were available for them.

These women became pioneers and heroes in the eyes of many women. Many women saw these people as heroes, and many wanted to follow their example. This caused a revolutionary stir amongst women and many turned their attention on the law that prohibited women to vote. This heaped more pressure on the government.

The reform acts also attracted many more campaigners for women’s suffrage. These acts aimed in giving more men the right to vote, however it was a double edged sword as this caused more discontent amongst women.