The suffragettes is the name given to a feminist movement which developed with the the United Kingdom at the beginning of the 20th century. The term comes from the word Suffrage, which indicates the Right to vote. Its members asserted the widening of the right to vote to the women. The movement, born in 1865, took a militant form between 1903 and 1917. In 1918, the British obtained the right of Vote as from 30 years (the men could, them, to vote as of 21 years). The equality was established ten years later: in 1928 the women were authorized to vote as of 21 years.
Before the First World War, the women was generally regarded as intellectually lower, even not being able to think by themselves. It thus appeared obvious that they could claim with the same rights only the men. The political matters were regarded as out of reach female spirit and it was thus not question which the women can vote.
In 1897, Millicent Fawcett founded the National union for the female vote ( National Union off Women' S Suffrage ) to obtain the right to vote for the women. There hoping to arrive by peaceful means, Fawcett gave arguments to convince the men, to only have the capacity to give the right to vote with the women. It highlighted for example that the women were to obey the laws and thus should have the right to take part in their creation.
In 1903, Emmeline Pankhurst founded the Social union and female policy ( Women' S Social and Political Union , WSPU) and with his/her two daughters Christabel and Sylvia as well as a group of quickly named British women suffragettes , began a more violent battle to obtain the equality between men and women.
En 1905, Christabel and Annie Kenney were stopped to have shouted of the slogans in favor of the female vote at a political meeting of the Liberal party. They chose the imprisonment instead of paying a fine. It was the beginning of a succession of arrests causing the sympathy of the public to the suffragettes. Those are reflected to burn institutions symbols of the male supremacy which they fought: a church or a golf course reserved to the men for example. Hunger strikes followed in the prisons. The police force tried to oblige them to eat, but that hardly stopped them. The government answered without success with the law known as “Cat and Mouse” ( Cat and Mouse Act , officially The Prisoners (Temporary Discharge for Ill Health) Act 1913 ): when a striker was too weak, it was slackened then réincarcérée once its life out of danger.
During the First World War, important shortages of male labor appeared and the women had to occupy of traditionally male employment. That caused in the spirits of many handing-over in questions on the capacities of the women. The war caused a rupture within the movement of the suffragettes. On the one hand, the current dominating represented by the WSPU of Emmeline and Christabel Pankhurst called with a " to cease-the-feu" in their countryside as long as the war lasted and in addition, of the more radical suffragettes, represented by Women' S Suffrage Federation of Sylvia Pankhurst, called with the continuation of the hostilities.
In 1918, the Parliament of the United Kingdom voted a law ( the Representation off the People Act 1918 ) granting the right to vote with the women of more than 30 years landowners or tenants having an annual rent higher than 5£ or whose spouse is as well as the graduate ones of British universities. They obtained in 1928 their statute of électrice according to the same terms as the men.
The United Kingdom was the eighth country to have given the right to vote with the women, the three first being the New Zealand (1893), the Australia (1902) and the Finland (1906). The United States, on the federal level, adopts it in 1919. In France, the women had this right only in 1944, at the end of the Second world war.
- cliotexte vote of the women
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