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Dani asked in Arts & HumanitiesHistory · 1 decade ago

how would ww1 have affected women?

please be precise ive got it as homework.

12 Answers

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago
    Favourite answer

    This is a complex question, as the advances of WW! need to be seen in the context of the wider moves towards women's emancipation and the advances in their social and political rights over the 18th, 19th and 20th centuries, as well as the ongoing challenges that remain in enabling equality of opportunity and the value of all citizens. has a list of some useful 'firsts' which show the issues that were deal with during WW1 (and also in its aftermath).

    The 20th century saw the most fundamental advances in the cause of women's emancipation. One of the most important achievements was women's suffrage, which gave women a voice in Parliament. The campaigns of the suffragists and militant suffragettes, and the work of women behind the lines and on the home front during World War I, were rewarded by limited suffrage for women in 1919 and equal suffrage in 1928.

    The war bestowed two valuable legacies on women. First, it opened up a wider range of occupations to female workers and hastened the collapse of traditional women's employment, particularly domestic service. From the 19th century to 1911, between 11 and 13 per cent of the female population in England and Wales were domestic servants. By 1931, the percentage had dropped to under eight per cent. For the middle classes, the decline of domestic servants was facilitated by the rise of domestic appliances, such as cookers, electric irons and vacuum cleaners. The popularity of 'labour-saving devices' does not, however, explain the dramatic drop in the servant population. Middle-class women continued to clamour for servants, but working women who might previously have been enticed into service were being drawn away by alternative employment opening up to satisfy the demands of war. Thus, nearly half of the first recruits to the London General Omnibus Company in 1916 were former domestic servants. Clerical work was another draw card. The number of women in the Civil Service increased from 33,000 in 1911 to 102,000 by 1921. The advantages of these alternative employments over domestic service were obvious: wages were higher, conditions better, and independence enhanced.

    Mrs Millicent Fawcett, leading feminist, founder of Newnham College Cambridge and president of the National Union of Women's Suffrage Societies from 1897 to 1918, said in 1918: 'The war revolutionised the industrial position of women - it found them serfs and left them free.' The war did offer women increased opportunities in the paid labour market. Between 1914 and 1918, an estimated two million women replaced men in employment, resulting in an increase in the proportion of women in total employment from 24 per cent in July 1914 to 37 per cent by November 1918.

    There are lots of books on the subject - major libraries will be a great resource for you.

  • 1 decade ago

    Look up major events:

    1.Pre WW1 women's suffrage in the UK was the political order of the day, but they suspended activities to contribute to the war effort.

    2. Women entered spheres of work and occupations that until that time they had been told they were incapable of doing. Industrial work, services, driving, transport, etc.

    3.Home front first time women were affected by war, bombing raids etc.

    4.The impact of losing so many men in the war had a major impact on workplaces, the family, society changing the face of the century.

    Some would say that in the UK it was women's contribution to the war effort which heralded the vote in1919

    Interesting topic. Good luck. Google those areas and you should come up with plenty.

  • 1 decade ago

    Women replaced men as cooks, signallers, clerks, and transport drivers.Woman for the first time took a uniformed place in the ranks In 1917 in Britain, Women's Auxiliary Army Corp and Women's Royal Naval Service was created. In countries, women tended to remain home. The war caused women to work in factories while the men went off to war. There were several million widows but also millions more of the unmarried without the prospect of finding husbands

  • 1 decade ago

    An old aunt of mine who was 14 when WWI began believed that it was the first step in the true emancipation of women. As she explained it to me: Women took over the men's jobs. My Aunt became a "bus conductress." The first thing the women did was cut their long skirts to calf length and abandon tight corsets. Many also cut their hair to prevent it getting in the way of their work.

    After the war, because they had proven themselves so able the government granted women in the United Kingdom limited voting rights (single women over 30, married women over 21) Women also declined to go back to long skirts and tight stays for everyday wear. (Take a look at the "flapper" fashions of the 1920's - the exact antithesis of the elaborate, stiff Edwardian styles that predated WWI)

    By and large once the war ended the nuclear family in which the wife stayed home remained the norm, but the shortage of men meant that many women had to remain single and self-supporting. Certain job and educational opportunities were not generally available to women, although there were mavericks everywhere who quietly bucked the system.

    Source(s): History scholar for 55 years - also talking to people who lived at that time - oral history is very important
  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    In August 1914 many women waved their sons, husbands, fathers, uncles and brothers goodbye as they marched their way to the western front. Marching into the distance to the sound of military brass bands the went over the horizon, many never to be seen again.

    The war was a localised horror, only stories of heroic deeds and victories were printed in the papers and to those at home it seemed likely that the war would be over by christmas and the men would be home for good.

    It wasn't until Autumn 1915 that a news camera man had brought his films home from the front and showed them in a London theatre. These films showed the true horror of the war over seas. The mud, the rats, the rain and the vision of hell that was the battle front. Many of the scenes showed men lying around,which caused one woman in the auditorium to jump out of her seat and point at the screen and shout "Oh my God, they're dead".

    It was after this that women began to take their jobs in the factories seriously and made a much more concerted effort to winning the war.

  • 1 decade ago

    All the women had to do the mens jobs as the men were away at war and there were constant advertising 'We want you' aimed at men living with their families to reep shame and guilt.

    Women who were housewives were just use to cooking, cleaning and looking after the children and now had to take over mens roles, milkmen, factory work, postman etc...

    Some women would have adjusted to this way of living much easier than others as it proposed freedom and the ability to work.

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    We did this in coursework last year. Basically it forced men to take women seriousely as the women were bumped up to doing all of the work in ammunitions factories and helping in the fields so men left behind were forced to take their claims of equal capabilities seriousely. See link.

  • 4 years ago

    I think that skirts tend to either look kind of cheap or trashy if they are tight and short, or they are simply just the run of the mill jean skirts that are not necessarily sexy.

  • Anonymous
    4 years ago

    Try maxi dresses with the medial side slits those will look great on you! It doesn't matter if you have long legs or not simply strut that skirt

  • Anonymous
    5 years ago

    They were not conscripted. They had plenty of time to go around handing out white feathers to men who did not volunteer. However they were needed to cover jobs left by the men who went fighting particularly in industry and agriculture.

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