The "Woman Question" Dbq

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In the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, many European women were still struggling for basic rights such as choosing who they married, obtaining full citizenship and having the right to vote. Because so many women were fighting for the same thing, many formed groups or alliances that were designed to fight against the male-driven political parties that wanted to deny them their rights. As the “woman question” became a bigger deal in politics and society, people began to form stronger opinions about whether or not they thought women should be allowed to vote. The eighteenth century in Europe began a revolution on the topic of women’s suffrage. An overwhelming amount of feminist groups argued for women’s suffrage and fought against the leading political parties to voice their opinions and try to incite change in the European governments. Starting in the eighteenth century, women and a few men like John Stewart Mill began fighting for more women’s rights and women’s suffrage in Europe. John Stewart Mill believed that the institution of the family was very corrupt because it was based on subordination and suppression of women. He believed that letting women vote would promote social strength and a moral regeneration (Document 1). Female political activist also fought for women’s rights by saying that, if women are nearly half of the population, excluding them from voting was a complete contradiction to the idea of universal suffrage (Document 2). Continuing with the idea of the expansion of universal suffrage, many people argued that allowing women to vote would broaden the base of democracy and weaken the traditional vices in European governments (Document 4). Many feminist groups emphasized the connection between domestic politics, society and the government. If women aren’t allowed to vote, they lose control over their domestic responsibilities as well and the high-class society begins to slip away (Document 5). The idea that social and political...
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