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WOMEN IN THE 19 th CENTURY Oh, how far the ladies have come!

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Presentation on theme: "WOMEN IN THE 19 th CENTURY Oh, how far the ladies have come!"— Presentation transcript:

1 WOMEN IN THE 19 th CENTURY Oh, how far the ladies have come!

2 Facts about the 19 th Century (1800s) Called “The Victorian Age” from England’s Queen Victoria who ruled for 60 years. The Industrial Revolution caused a sharp differentiation between the gender roles and life became more comfortable for ordinary people living in towns and cities. During this time, marriages were usually arranged, except for the poorest people. Divorce was unknown. Legally girls could marry when they were 12 years old. As the 18 th century progressed, Girls from well off families started goimg to school but it was felt important for them to learn 'accomplishments' like embroidery and music rather than academic subjects. At the end of the 18th century a woman named Mary Wollstonecraft ( ) published a book called A Vindication of the Rights of Woman.

3 STEREOTYPES OF MEN AND WOMEN IN THE 19 th CENTURY MEN Powerful Active Brave Worldly Logical Rational Individual Independent Able to resist temptation Tainted Ambitious Sexual Sphere: PUBLIC

4 STEREOTYPES OF MEN AND WOMEN IN THE 19 th CENTURY WOMEN Weak Passive Timid Domestic Illogical Emotional/hysterical Familial Dependent Unable to resist temptation Pure Content Non- sexual Sphere: PRIVATE

5 STEREOTYPES OF MEN AND WOMEN IN THE 19 th CENTURY MEN Powerful Active Brave Worldly Logical Rational Individual Independent Able to resist temptation Tainted Ambitious Sexual Sphere: PUBLIC WOMEN Weak Passive Timid Domestic Illogical Emotional/hysterical Familial Dependent Unable to resist temptation Pure Content Non- sexual Sphere: PRIVATE

6 THINK PAIR SHARE Reflect: 1. These traits are generally _____ of each other. 2. However, there are a few traits for women that are contradictions of each other. Which are they?

7 Four Main Virtues of a “True Woman” of the 19 th century 1. Pious (religious) 2. Pure (uncontaminated, chaste, clean) 3. Submissive (yielding to someone else) 4. Domestic (stay at home and do household chores)

8 Your Life as a woman in the 19 th century You live a life a little better than that of a slave. You have to obey men, because you have no money or rights of your own. If you remained single, you would attract social disapproval and pity. You could not have children or live with a man: the social penalties were simply too high.

9 Your Life as a woman in the 19 th century You can not follow your chosen profession, since they are all closed to women. You receive less education than boys, are banned from universities, and can obtain only low-paid jobs.

10 Your Life as a woman in the 19 th century Your sole purpose is to marry and reproduce. Once you marry, everything you own, inherit and earn automatically belongs to your husband. Furthermore, rights to you personally - that is, access to your own body - are his alone. You must agree to this verbally: written into the marriage ceremony is a vow to obey your husband and you will do whatever he asks of you.

11 Your Life as a woman in the 19 th century Obviously, no sex before marriage is allowed. You learn about sex on your wedding night. Hope you like it with him! But men are allowed to have sex with servants and prostitutes whenever, no problem.

12 Your Life as a woman in the 19 th century Your husband has the right to force you into sex and childbirth. He can also take your children without reason and send them to be raised elsewhere. He can spend your money however he wishes.

13 True life example Susannah Palmer escaped from her adulterous husband in 1869 after suffering many years of brutal beatings, and made a new life for herself. She worked, saved, and created a new home for her children. However, then Her husband found her, took her children and stripped her of all her possessions and left her with nothing, with the blessing of the law. In a fury she stabbed him, and was immediately hung as punishment.

14 Your Life as a woman in the 19 th century- Fashion Women's clothing symbolized their constricted lives. Tight lacing into corsets and many multiple layers of skirts which dragged on the ground restricted women's freedom of movement. The skirts were so wide that many women died engulfed in flames after the material caught fire from an open grate or candle.

15 And you thought heels were uncomfortable!

16 Your Life as a woman in the 19 th century- Fashion As corsets develop, the woman's breathing becomes much more difficult. Fainting as a reaction to excitement or an "improper" situation is acceptable and frequent, as it means that a woman is truly a lady.


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