Sunday, 22 September, 2019

100 years on, a new gag on women

Fawcett was a 100 years on, a new gag on women
Patty Aguilar | 07 February, 2018, 15:31

By 1866, females were beginning to campaign for women's suffrage, and they were able to vote in local elections within a couple of years.

The Representation of the People Act was passed in 1918 and enabled women over 30 to vote.

The act gave the vote to women over the age of 30 and "of property".

Other prominent Jewish women who played important parts in the suffrage movement include Eleanor Marx, Edith Zangwill, Lilian Montagu, and Inez Bensusan.

Recognition of the need for change grew under the pressures of the war - military, social and political.

Women stepped into crucial jobs vacated by men sent to fight. Many faced the dangers of working in the rapidly expanding munitions factories where accidental explosions were not uncommon.

"Suffragettes were not upper class feminists with time on their hands, but fearless mavericks who brought together women (and men) from all economic and social backgrounds", she told Sky News.

"Suffragettes like the Pankhursts are well known, but there are many inspirational stories from the battle to secure the vote for women that are less well known". These campaigns were vicious and served not only to reinforce the stereotype of a woman's role being in the home but warned of the "dangers" of women participating in the democratic process.

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One of the most interesting items is the Sidmouth and District Women's Suffrage Society banner which has been restored through funding from the National Lottery and South West Museum.

It soon adopted the name Suffragettes as its own.

Dr Catriona Cooper, who is researching the role of women in the House of Commons in the 19th century, said the first petition for women to vote had been presented in 1832, on behalf of Mary Smith, said to be from Stanmore in Yorkshire.

Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon pointed out the transformation of a site once used to detain women, posting a picture of Scottish government headquarters St Andrew's House on Twitter.

This Pacific nation is widely recognised as the first "self-governing" country to extend the franchise to women. But, it was a start, for in that general election in December, only 40 per cent or 8.5 million women voted, and they had to own property to qualify to vote; whereas men over 21 years old could vote.

In 1867, John Stuart Mill proposed an amendment which would give women the same voting terms as men, but it was rejected by 194 to 73 votes. At less than £600 a month, in reality the system demands that women need a partner to support the family financially. It was left to Viscountess Nancy Astor to be the first woman to take her seat in parliament in December 1919 following a by-election victory. After France further hospitals were established in Serbia, Russia, Greece, Malta and Corsica.It's a tragedy that Elsie and so many others did not live to celebrate achieving the vote but their contributions, through their war efforts and campaigning, demonstrated women's unequivocal capabilities and dismantled the long-held views that women were inferior and not up to the task.

We know this because the diaries of a suffragette named Mary Blathwayt reveal she had "a close relationship" with the lesbian composer Ethel Smyth. On June 4, 1913, Emily Davison stepped in front of King George V's horse, Anmer, running in the Epsom Derby, suffering serious injuries that led to her death four days later. The event has been commissioned by 14-18 NOW and is produced by "Artichoke", creators of large-scale public art events.

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