Essay on the changing role of women as a consequence of WW1 Before 1914 Many women stopped at home and worked by doing the washing, sewing, and looking after their families, which were the normal activities of a housewife. Before WW1 just over half of all single women and one in seven married women worked outside the home to make money. The men were the breadwinners of the family, and were basically the boss; this was the way the hierarchy in the family was before 1914. Women in paid work weren’t treated the same as the male workers. There was a lot of sexist employers as most of them thought a ‘women’s place’ was in the home.
Gender Roles Changing in The Last Century Women have come a long way from being confined by the idealized image society held them to. The routine by which all women must live or deny their femininity and stand up for what they wish to do in life. From the necessity to only be the housewife, mother, and wife in which they must be cooking, cleaning, washing, and bearing children they have now become bread winners just like the men and can provide for their families if they choose to and not because that is how society sees it. If a woman would like to break out of being the housewife and work then she shall do so! Women in the work place began with World War I, around 1914.
The wives educate the children through storytelling. Aside from taking care of the children the wives must clean the compounds, cook for the entire family, and tend to the husband’s every need. The wives are responsible for holding the family together. If the wives upset the husband in any way the husband can beat them. The wives relationship with their husband is distant because of their fear of him.
During that time it was expected of wives to care for all the home matters including taking care of the children. Minnie’s number one priority though, was to her husband. Anything he needed she was to do and many men expected their wives to be happy they had the privilege. Most of the time the wives had no say as to their lives or their family’s life, whatever the husband said, it was not to be questioned. Mrs. Hale tells the reader about Minnie’s life as a young woman who was attractive, colorful and creative.
They weren’t allowed to enter many professions, from law to medical; or study in the prestigious schools of the males. During this time period, women were required to be the housekeepers and caretakers of the family. While the husbands were out working, the middle-class to high-class wives would perform household chores and take care of the children. The lower class women would often work outside of the house, but out in the world of discrimination, in mills and factories as underpaid laborers and servants. Women’s rights wasn’t an issue that was profoundly acknowledged until the late 18th, early 19th century.
These couples choose not to have children because they feel that they are not capble or do not want to take on the responsibilities that come with raising a child. However, “most adults must be prepared to parent” because future generations are going to need a profound and strong structure to look up to as they conquer their ambitions and dreams (353). “The mother-only family” is another type of system that exists today (354). Women most times must take on the responsibility of being the mom and dad of the family, meaning she would have to be the breadwinner for the family and raise her children to the best of her ability. However, most times the men do provide funds “through child support payments or through the taxes they pay that provide ‘Aid to Families with Dependent Children’ (AFDC)” (354).
Children were an economic responsibility for women - providing food, housing and clothing until the child was independent and could go out to work to provide for the family themselves. Most working class women worked, as this was an obligation, but this work contrasted hugely to that of their male counterparts, occupying roles of lower skill and less pay. Edward Cadbury in 1909 said that marriage was ‘an escape from work’ Trint, S. History Learning Site 2010-2011. Women’s Rights. www.historylearningsite.co.uk [accessed 07122011].
Women in Ancient Rome Roman woman had hard lives and rarely enjoyed freedom. Women were mainly expected to be mothers and look after the household. Often, women were treated as second-class citizens and once they were married they were the property of their husband. However, by the end of the republic this practice had ended and women married women were granted legal rights. Daily routines and duties included running the house, looking after the family, working in the fields and spinning and weaving.
In our earliest days as a species, that meant the men went hunting and brought home meat, while in recent times it's meant earning a paycheck. Women, on the other hand, took care of children and housekeeping. While men worked outside the home, women were expected to stay within the home. However, thanks to cultural movements, it's now considered more acceptable for women to have a career and men have admitted that they don't want a career and would rather stay home with their children. An example of the change in the gender roles is in the film "Bend It like Beckham".