Q. 205.0( 1 Vote )

What were the changes in the kind of work available to women in London between the nineteenth and the twentieth centuries? Explain the factors which led to this change.

Answer :

Changes in the kind of work available to women in London between the nineteenth and the twentieth century were primarily based on industrial and technological advancements.

(i) Consequently, women had to work in households for a living, and this led to an increase in the number of domestic servants. A large number of women used their homes to increase family income by taking in lodgers or through activities like tailoring, washing or matchbox making. According to 1861 census about one-fourth of a million women worked as domestic servants in London-most of them were from migrant families.


(ii) The First World War brought a change in the kind of their work. They withdrew from domestic services to get employment in wartime industries and offices. They once again joined the industrial sector.


Factors which led to this change:


(i) Factories employed a large number of women in the late 18th and 19th century with technological developments, but gradually women lost their jobs and were forced to work within households.


(ii) There was a great change in the 20th century. As the First World War started, women got employment in wartime industries and offices so, they gradually withdrew from domestic services.


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