Paper Sample: The Role of Women in the 19th and 18th Century

 

role of women in the 18th century

May 15,  · In earlier centuries it had been usual for women to work alongside husbands and brothers in the family business. Living ‘over the shop’ made it easy for women to help out by serving customers or keeping accounts while also attending to their domestic duties. Nov 24,  · The Role Of Women During The 18th Century. The women characters in The Castle of Otranto are also portrayed as weak compared to the other novels we have read. I felt that the main female characters in Roxana and Pamela who sort of knew how to manipulate the men . WOMEN IN THE 16TH, 17TH, AND 18TH CENTURIES: INTRODUCTION. The century closed with the deaths of visionaries such as Mary Wollstonecraft and Catherine the Great, and the births of a new breed of female writers and scholars. The political and social changes that took place in the eighteenth century paved the way for these future writers and activists to advance the cause of women's rights.


Women in the 18th Century


In earlier centuries it had been usual for women to work alongside husbands and brothers in the family business.

As the 19th century progressed men increasingly commuted to their place of work — the factory, shop or office. Wives, daughters and sisters were left at home all day to oversee the domestic duties that were increasingly carried out by servants. From the s, women started to adopt the crinoline, a huge bell-shaped skirt that made it virtually impossible to clean a grate or sweep the stairs without tumbling over.

Women were considered physically weaker yet morally superior to men, which meant that they were best suited to the domestic sphere. Not only was it their job to counterbalance the moral taint of the public sphere in which their husbands laboured all day, they were also preparing the next generation to carry on this way of life.

The fact that women had such great influence at home was used as an argument against giving them the vote. These would be learned either at boarding school or from a resident governess. A woman must have a thorough knowledge of music, singing, drawing, role of women in the 18th century, dancing, and the modern languages … ; and besides all this, she must possess a certain something in her air and manner of walking, the tone of her voice, her address and expressions … ch.

As Miss Bingley emphasizes, it was important for a well-educated girl to soften her erudition with a graceful and feminine manner. Some doctors reported that too much study actually had a damaging effect on the ovaries, turning attractive young women into dried-up prunes. Later in the century, when Oxford and Cambridge opened their doors to women, many families refused to let their clever daughters attend for fear that they would make themselves unmarriageable.

Drawing and embroidery were part of a conventional female education in the 18th and 19th centuries. Usage terms Public Domain Marriage and sexuality At the same time, a young girl was not expected to focus too obviously on finding a husband. Women were assumed to desire marriage because it allowed them to become mothers rather than to pursue sexual or emotional satisfaction. Girls usually married in their early to mids. Typically, the groom would be five years older.

Some unfortunate couples were obliged to endure an engagement lasting decades before they could afford to marry. If a young man was particularly pious he might manage to stay chaste until he married. Many respectable young men, however, resorted to using prostitutes.

All the major cities had red light districts where it was easy to find a woman whom you could pay for sex. Unfortunately syphilis and other sexual diseases were rife, and many young men unwittingly passed on the infection to their wives. For those unlucky enough to develop full-blown tertiary syphilis, the result was a painful and lingering death, usually in the mids. Usage terms Public Domain Young and not-so-young women had no choice but to stay chaste until marriage.

They were role of women in the 18th century even allowed to speak to men unless there was a married woman present as a chaperone. Higher education or professional work was also out of the question. These emotional frustrations could lead to all sorts of covert rebellion. Young Florence Nightingale longed to be able to role of women in the 18th century something useful in the world, but was expected to stay with her mother and role of women in the 18th century, helping supervise the servants.

She suffered from hysterical outbursts as a teenager, and could not bear to eat with the rest of the family, role of women in the 18th century.

This passage was considered so shocking that conservative commentators such as Lady Elizabeth Eastlake in a famously scathing review of Jane Eyre likened its tone to Chartism, the popular labour movement that advocated universal suffrage. The figure of the governess was unsettling, especially in literature, because it drew attention to the fact that not all Victorian women were as sexless as Dr Acton had suggested.

Usage terms Public Domain Prostitution The prostitute was the shadow that haunted the well-run middle-class home. She serviced the needs of the men of the house, not just before marriage but sometimes during it too. Just like the men she slept with, but unlike their wives, the prostitute was a worker in the economic market place, exchanging services for cash. For this reason Contagious Diseases Act were instituted from which allowed, in certain towns, for the forced medical examination of any woman who was suspected of being a sex worker.

Many charities were instituted to help reform prostitutes. Despite these efforts, prostitution continued to flourish for as long as there were bachelors who were prevented by economy from marrying until their late 20s, and working-class women who desperately needed to make role of women in the 18th century to raise their own children.

Kathryn is also editor of George Eliot: A Family History and has won many national prizes for her journalism and historical writing. She is a contributing editor to Prospect magazine as well as a book reviewer and commentator for the Guardian and BBC Radio. The text in this article is available under the Creative Commons License. Gender roles in the 19th century. From marriage and sexuality to education and rights, Professor Kathryn Hughes looks at attitudes towards gender in 19th-century Britain.

Usage terms Public Domain. Marriage and sexuality At the same time, a young girl was not expected to focus too obviously on finding a husband, role of women in the 18th century.

Young and not-so-young women had no choice but to stay chaste until marriage. Prostitution The prostitute was the shadow role of women in the 18th century haunted the well-run middle-class home, role of women in the 18th century.

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Gender roles in the 19th century - The British Library

 

role of women in the 18th century

 

May 15,  · In earlier centuries it had been usual for women to work alongside husbands and brothers in the family business. Living ‘over the shop’ made it easy for women to help out by serving customers or keeping accounts while also attending to their domestic duties. In the 18th century pale skin was fashionable. So were dark eyebrows. Women also used rouge abundantly. Perfume was also common. In the early 18th century a new scent was made in Cologne. Later in the century it became known as Eau de Cologne. In the 18th century some women wore false eyebrows made of mouse fur. They were glued to the face. Oct 25,  · s e o-automated-link-building-1T h e Roles of Women during the 18 th Century and How They Were Portrayed in Literature. Outline. During the eighteenth century, women’s roles in society were categorized as domestic. The roles of women were strictly defined in areas such as “work, family, and society according to ideas of what is appropriate for the sex” (Easton ).