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“How was British society changed 1906 – 1918?”

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1 “How was British society changed 1906 – 1918?”
Paper 2: British History 1906 – 1918 “How was British society changed 1906 – 1918?” Topics include: How to look at sources Women and the vote British civilians and the War Liberal reforms

2 Paper 2 – British Society 1906-1918
Each paper will focus on only one topic. 2003 – Why were women given the vote in 1918? 2004 – How were people in Britain affected by the war? 2005 – How effective were the Liberal welfare reforms? 2006 – Did government propaganda fail to convince the British public to support WW1? 2007 – Did the suffragettes do more harm than good?

3 Topic 1: Women and the Vote
Possible questions: “How and why did women try to win the right to vote?” “What were the arguments for and against female suffrage?” “How effective were the suffragettes/suffragists?”

4 19th Century Britain… The C19th was a time of CHANGE for Britain. From 1750 – 1850 Britain underwent a massive transformation and it became the worlds first industrial nation Britain was now a nation where the majority of people were ‘urban dwellers’ who worked in factories. The changes had huge effects on living conditions, wages, job opportunities, education, health and industry The Industrial Revolution had inevitable effects on British politics and political life – although initially these changes excluded women.

5 Many of the political changes effected men yet these changes would also have a knock on effect on women too…

6 In the1867 Reform Act when working men were given the right to vote, the MP John Stuart Mill first put forward the idea that women should be given the vote. However, no political party backed the idea In 1884 – another Reform Act – the vote was given to working class men in rural areas – 2/3 of men were now allowed to vote Many middle class women – (remember most people believed that land wealth meant you could vote) now saw many men who were less well off than them suddenly able to vote! The women thought this to be grossly UNFAIR!! However… Women were also taking on more voluntary roles and campaigning for local authorities to improve living conditions in urban slums The Isle of Man gave women the vote in 1881, New Zealand in 1893, Finland in 1906 and Norway in 1907 – What was this doing? These are all good examples of women gradually starting to be taken seriously – during this time of change and political change.

7 Why does all this matter?
It is important to remember that women didn’t suddenly wake up in 1870 and realise that they had been treated unfairly and demanded change! The development of a suffrage movement happened gradually This is because by 1870 the industrial revolution had changed Britain dramatically The changes would therefore also affect women and they too began to realise the need for change and their importance It is therefore impossible to understand the development of the suffrage movement without knowing the background and the state of late Victorian Britain.

8 The Role of women Working Class Women
A woman's role in life was as a wife and mother Her duty was to obey her husband The education girls received reinforced this view Working Class Women Nearly all working class women would have to go to work as they needed the money Many women worked at home or as a domestic servant or in workshops and many others worked in textile factories Towards the end of the C19th century a wider range of jobs were available but these were for the luckiest ladies and women would have to leave once they were married. They were also paid less then the men

9 Middle and upper class women
Girls from richer families were educated ay home by a governess Main of their education was to make them good wives and mothers They were ‘ornaments’ for their men – long dresses with tiny waists By 1900 new job opportunities included doctors and architects but men and women still did largely different jobs and women were paid a great deal less Marriage Women were in an inferior position compared to their husbands All property belonged to the husband – in fact they became property of their husbands Husbands could rape and better their wives and it was virtually impossible for a women to get a divorce By 1900 some improvements had been made yet if a divorce did occur the wife lost all rights to her children

10 What progress did women make by 1900?
You may have the impression that Victorian women had very little choice in how they lived and that most of them accepted their domestic role. For many women this was the case – but not for all. During the C19th a significant number of women turned against the conventional female role.

11 Josephine Butler 1878 – 1906 A campaigner for women’s rights, birth control and socialism. She began a series of famous campaigns for better treatment for prostitutes and for refuges for poor and ill women to be set up. Her most significant campaign was her fight against the contagious Diseases Acts introduced in 1866 and 1869.

12 Marie Lloyd 1870 – 1922 A very popular music – hall singer who performed in Britain, America and South Africa. Lloyd's songs, although perfectly harmless by modern standards, began to gain a reputation for being "racy" and filled with double entendre, ("She'd never had her ticket punched before" for example) largely thanks to the manner in which she sang them, adding winks and gestures, and creating a conspiratorial relationship with her audience.

13 Florence Nightingale 1820 – 1910
As a nurse during the Crimean War, Nightingale believed the high death rates were due to poor nutrition and supplies and overworking of the soldiers. It was not until after she returned to Britain and began collecting evidence before the Royal Commission on the Health of the Army, that she came to believe that most of the soldiers at the hospital were killed by poor living conditions. Consequently, she reduced deaths in the Army during peacetime and turned attention to the sanitary design of hospitals. Florence set up nurses’ training schools in Britain and helped to improve the standards of hospitals.

14 A post card published by the National Union of Women’s suffrage Societies (NUWSS) in the early 1900’s.

15 What were the arguments for and against women and the vote?

16 For votes for women Parliament’s decisions affect both men and women. So women shouldbe able to vote for the MPs who pass those laws. Women pay taxes just like men Women have special skills and expertise. They can help parliament make better laws on issues such as education and on the home There are many single women and widows who bear the same responsibilities as men Many uneducated working men can vote while well-eductated and respectable women cannot. Women have increasing opportunities in education and work – the vote should come next Britain is not a true democracy until women have the vote

17 Votes against women Women are already represented by their husbands
Women and men have separate spheres Women are too rational. They are too emotional to be trusted with the vote Most women do NOT want the vote Giving respectable women the vote will also encourage them to develop their careers and neglect their family duties Giving the vote to women will mean giving it to all men – including layabouts and riff raff Women do NOT fight in wars for their country. So they should not have a say in whether the country should go to war It is dangerous to change a system that already works

18 Suffragettes v Suffragists Which methods worked best?

19 The NUWSS or ‘The Suffragists’
Aim: To get women the vote Methods: The Suffragists used peaceful methods, for example – meetings, leaflets, petitions and speeches. Leader: Millicent Fawcett

20 The WSPU or ‘The Suffragettes’
Aim: To get women the vote Method: The suffragettes believed in ‘deeds not words’ and used many violent methods such as window smashing, arson and attacking policemen and politicians. Leader: Emmeline Pankhurst and her 2 Daughters, Christabel and Sylvia

21 How effective were the Suffragettes?


23 Did WW1 help women to achieve the vote?

24 Key points When war broke out in August 1914, thousands of women were sacked from jobs in dressmaking, millinery and jewellery making.They needed work – and they wanted to help the war effort. Suffragettes stopped all militant action in order to support the war effort.


26 VAD’s Key points Women were in great demand for
the ‘caring’ side of employment and became nurses in the First Aid Nursing Yeomanry, and drivers and clerks in Voluntary Aid Detachments. VAD’s

27 Why did some women achieve the vote in 1918?

28 What happened? Preparations for reform actually started in 1916, as a result of the number of men who could no longer vote; the law said that anyone away from home for more than a year lost the right to vote. The government obviously had to do something about this. Milicent Fawcett and the NUWSS heard about this and began to put pressure on the government to also consider votes for women. 1917 – Conference on Electoral Reform was set up and it was recommended that some women should be given the vote House of commons voted – 385 MP’s in favour and 55 against 6th February 1918 – The Bill was given royal assent and became law…

29 Women over the age of 30 were given the vote
Women over the age of 30 were allowed to become MP’s All men over the age of 21 were given the vote This meant that out of an electorate of 21 million – 8 million were women. However, this was still not everything that the women had fought for as they did not have the vote on the same terms as men. There were 2 reasons for this: The Government was worried about there being more women voters than men The Government was worried that young women were too ‘fighty’ and not responsible enough to have the vote.

30 Why did some women get the vote in 1918?
In order to answer this question there are two issues which need to be considered… Why was the idea of women getting the vote being considered at all? Why was 1918 the year that they got the vote?

31 Topic 2: Britain during World War One:
How were civilians affected by the War? How effective was government propaganda during the war? How did women contribute to the war effort? What was the attitude of the British people at the end of the war towards Germany and the T of V?

32 How did Britain get soldiers to fight in WW1?
Why did so many people volunteer in the first few months of the war? One main reason was the propaganda campaign undertaken by the British Government. You are about to see some posters used in this campaign. As we look through them think about the emotions that these posters are appealing to – how would they have made young men enlist in 1914/15?




36 What common themes were in those posters?
What common emotions were they trying to appeal to? Appeal to their patriotism (love of Britain). Attract them with a sense of adventure. Make them feel cowards if they don’t sign up. Get them to think about what their family or friends might think about them. Make them feel angry and want revenge for German atrocities. By 1916 the Government was ready to introduce conscription. This was done through the MILITARY SERVICE ACTS. Between 1916 and 1918 about 1 in 3 men were conscripted into the armed forces.

37 A cartoon published in the socialist
newspaper The Workers’ Dreadnought in 1916.

38 In what sense was WWI a total war?
World war one was not only fought away on the battlefields… For the first time, the destruction and violence of war was brought home to mainland Britain. This was a total war.

39 Zeppelin Raids


41 The Gotha Bomber or ‘Giant Bomber’

42 How was Britain organised to fight the war?
It was one thing to make sure that there were enough soldiers in the armed forces, but that was only part of the problem. The government had to find ways of using the nation’s population to keep the country’s economy going in order to supply troops and feed the people.


44 DORA On 8th August 1914, parliament passed the first of many ‘Defence of the realm acts’ – nicknamed DORA. The acts gave the government power to bypass parliament This meant the government could control almost every aspect of people’s lives. The government could take land, buildings and industries which were vital to war economy The government had control of all newspapers and controlled all information given to the public.

45 DORA: Under DORA the people of Britain were not allowed to: Talk about naval or military matters Spread rumours about military affairs Trespass on railway bridges Fly a kite Light bonfires or fireworks Buy binoculars Trespass on allotments Melt down gold or silver Give bread to dogs, chickens or horses Use invisible ink when writing abroad Buy whisky or brandy in a railway refreshment room Ring church bells The government of Britain could: Try and civilian breaking these laws Take possession of any factory or workshop Take any land it needed Censor newspapers As the war continued, the government brought in other measures: Introduced British summer time to give more daylight for work in the evening Cut down on pub opening hours Gave instructions for beer to be watered down Customers in pubs were not allowed to buy rounds of drinks

46 Controlling Britain’s Industry

47 Food Production and Distribution:
By 1913 Britain was dependent on foreign food All imports came by the sea British sea power was strong but by 1917 German u-boats were making the situation serious. U-boats were sinking 1 in 4 British merchant ships As food ran short prices rose The poor could not even afford bread Shops closed in the afternoon as they ran out of food. David Lloyd George tackled the problems in 2 ways… Supply and demand

48 “Business as usual”… In the early years of the war people were determined to carry on as usual As a result morale was kept high and their determination to win the war was strengthened David Lloyd George attacked the idea as he thought “it had the potential to destroy the war effort

49 A cartoon published in Punch magazine in April 1915.
What point is cartoonist trying to make? Is the cartoonist in favour of the actions taken by Lloyd George? “Delivering the goods”

50 British Propaganda in WW1
Definition: Propaganda: Propaganda is limited, often biased information used for a specific purpose. In times of war, the purpose is usually to keep up morale, to encourage people to support the war effort and to create hatred and suspicion of the enemy. Propaganda also involves the control of information and censorship. All governments use propaganda during war, and the British government was no different.

51 The role of the press in WW1
Newspaper reports: The role of the press was crucial during World War One as they were the public’s main source of information. People needed to know what was happening in the war so that they could assess the events However, if the newspapers did print the truth then there would be a collapse in morale, a fall in recruitment and even strikes, rebellion and mutiny in the armed forces. In 1914 DORA gave the government complete control of the newspapers. At the start of the war NO journalists were allowed at the front. The government would give the newspapers a ‘summary’ of what was happening at the front.

52 Posters, postcards and cartoons
Before the television – the visual impact of the poster and postcard was incredible. In the first year of the war between 2 – 5 million copies of over 110 different posters were issued. Most of them were used for recruitment Later they were aimed at war weariness and to create stories of German atrocities Many postcards were also created – which used similar themes as posters.

53 Photographs and Paintings
On the western front Germany had approx 50 official photographers and France had approx 35. Britain had 4 At the start of the war British photographers were NOT allowed to photograph the dead and dying. The first British artists were appointed by the government in 1916. By 1917 Lord Beaverbrook became minister of information – he wanted a record of the war and allowed both photographers and artists to work more freely.

54 Official Films There were many propagandist political cartoons made during the war and shown at cinemas across Britain Their aim - to get people to support the war, by mocking the Germans and praising the efforts of the British. The most famous British propaganda film was the battle of the Somme and was shown to all audiences – including the royal family and soldiers on the western front The real battle began on the 1st July 1916 and lasted until Nov 1916, yet the film was being shown in cinemas by August 1916!

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