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Btissam Fanchaouy

The Womens Right Movement in the 1920s

Before the 1920s, Womens life in
the United States was quite difficult
compared to what is today; however,
the Womens right movement in the
1920s changed womens lives and
status in society. Wifehood and
motherhood were considered
womens primary and most
significant job. They were also
considered inferior to men.
after many years of long
struggle and hard work they
earned their freedom and
equality in the society, and
that brought a huge change in
their role and status too.
During the 1920s women
changed to flappers, and
women become a huge part in
the work force, voting, and
The Womens Right Movement in the
The flapper symbolized the women
rights movement. The term
described the women as
rebellious, energetic, fun-loving
and bold (America Pathway to
the Present, 684t). For centuries
women wore long skirts. They
were often so long that they
draped on the floor
The Womens Right Movement in the 1920s
However, this changed in the 1920s when
womens clothes began to creep up to the
ankle and the bottom of the calf. The
shorter skirt became the potent symbol
for the changing roles of women. Until the
advent of the twentieth century, female
ankles and calves were hidden but the
flapper changed all of that. Moreover,
their waistlines dropped. The girls in teens
and in their twenties became the first to
wear short skirts, stating that they were
the New Women, no longer bound to
prewar values (Flapper skirts as feminist
The Womens Right Movement in the
The new women cut their hair short and their clothes
became shapeless. Their chest was as flat as a board
and they wore makeup and applied it in public. They
also started smoking, drinking and swearing and
characterized themselves as rebels (America, Pathway
to the present). Narrow boyish hips were preferred and
womanly curves were eliminated as clothes became
loose and unfitted. Slimness became important for
flappers, and they began to watch their weight and diet.
The new women lacked modesty, propriety and
womanly virtues.
The Womens Right Movement in the 1920s
Not only did womens clothing change in the 1920s,
but they also started to work more outside their
homes. Women before the 1920s had a hard time
finding jobs, as they were supposed to stay at home
and take care of children, do household chores, and
prepare food. Even when they did find jobs, they were
paid with low salaries compared to men and got very
few hours for job. Many women turned to prostitution
because they had no other way of surviving (the
Women rights movement in 1920). The women rights
movement however changed this greatly. It allowed
woman to have more working hours and higher pay.
The Womens Right Movement in the
During World War 1, women
started working more outside
their homes and they moved to
higher paying jobs. Getting jobs
helped women because
sometimes women had to
support not only their children
but also their sick husbands.
The Womens Right Movement in the 1920s
During the 1920s, about fifteen percent of the
wage- earning women became professionals and
about twenty percent held clerical positions the
percentage of married women working increased
from twenty three percent of the total female
work force in 1920 to 29 percent in 1930
(America Pathway to the present).
The Womens Right Movement in the
Young women before the 1920s were usually educated until
the ages of nine to twelve years - the only exception were girls
from the rich class who were allowed to have a higher
education. Lack of education also prevented many women
from getting good jobs with good pay; however, this changed
after the 1920s when women got equal rights to men.
Furthermore, the 1920s movement also resulted in the
creation of the Womens bureau of the department of labor,
formed in 1922, to collect information about women in the
workforce and safeguard to insure good working conditions
for women.
The Womens Right Movement in the 1920s
Although women suffrage movement had
begun in 1848 in the Women's Rights
Convention in Seneca Falls,Women officially got
the right to vote on August 26, 1920, after the
19th amendment was ratified. This was one of
the major breakthroughs contributing to
womens equality. However, there were still
many women who didnt vote during this time
period. "Women who were adults at that time
had been socialized to believe that voting was
socially inappropriate for women," said Susan J.
Carroll, senior scholar at the Center for
American Women and Politics (1920, women
get the vote). People believed that women
should not vote because they werent smart
enough to make the right decisions.
The Womens Right Movement in the
There was also this view that if women began to take part in
politics then they would stop getting married. However, after
the 19th amendment, women began asking for more rights to
equal wages. Moreover, 1920 brought new cultural innovation
that brought their focus from politics to the society; this
included new fashions and trends. The political and social
change sought by suffragist changed women roles in society
The Womens Right Movement in the 1920s
The Womens Right Movement in the
The tremendous hardship of women
finally led to their huge change in
society during the 1920s. This was the
beginning to their equality in society.
Women of this century faced their
hardships and overcame the obstacles of
their lives. We women of today would
not be anyone without their huge
contribution. Womens lives would be so
much different if not for the women
who fought for their rights to freedom
and liberty.