Suffragettes Essay

1253 WordsMar 11, 20126 Pages
“Some Women Gained The Vote In 1918 As A Result Of Suffragette Actions.” How Accurate Is This View? In 1918, the Representation of the People Act was passed; allowing all men over the age of 21 to vote, as well as men aged 19 to 20 who had fought in the war, but this act, most importantly, enfranchised women over the age of 30. However, there were various conditions that had to be met. Women had to have a university degree or some higher level of education and they had to be a householder or married to a householder. Many believe that women gained the right to vote in 1918 as a result of Suffragette actions and this is accurate to a reasonable extent, but there are many other factors as to why women were enfranchised, such as the Suffragist movement actions, party advantage, the First World War and changing attitudes. Suffragette actions certainly did help women gain the vote as the protests, hunger strikes and violence shocked society and the government into doing something about women’s suffrage. Although the government could not be seen to be influenced by Suffragette violence, politicians would find Suffragette violence after the war difficult to deal with so some believe that this was one of the reasons that women were allowed the vote. The Suffragettes attracted much media attention to their cause and regardless of whether positive or negative; they still managed to bring the problem of women’s suffrage into a more public light. However, many historians argue that Suffragette actions did more harm than good and that the media attention the Suffragettes gained portrayed them as violent and re-enforced the idea that women were silly and foolish. Historian, John Ray, states “Such violence led to a mixed reaction. Of course, it gained publicity. Newspapers were able to provide the public with long reports and some photographs. Suffragettes were pleased

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