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Level 7

7AAH3025 Gender and British Society, 1900-1945

Credit value: 20
Module convenor/tutor (2019/20): Dr Ben Mechen
Teaching pattern: 10 x 2-hour weekly seminars
Availability: Please see module list for relevant year
Assessment: 1 x 4,000-word essay (100%)

Students are reassessed in the failed elements of assessment and by the same methods as the first attempt.

The modules offered in each academic year are subject to change in line with staff availability and student demand: there is no guarantee every module will run. Module descriptions and information may vary between years.

This module examines the making of modern masculinities and femininities in Edwardian and interwar Britain, a time when gender played a central role in the reorganization of lives, livelihoods and social institutions amidst rapid social transformation. The topics covered include the campaign for women’s suffrage, the changes wrought by the First World War on gender relations, the participation of women in public life, and gendered experiences of work, education, and family life between the two world wars.

Provisional Teaching Plan

Each seminar’s discussion will be guided by a set of key questions, but students should aim to think about the topics broadly and be prepared to discuss all of the issues arising from their reading. Students must complete the core reading and are expected to read a selection of secondary readings and primary sources, following their interests. Each week the seminars will begin with a student presentation reflecting on the major themes followed by small group work and then open discussion. Arrangements for presentations will be arranged in advance with the module convenor.

Suggested introductory reading

This is suggested reading and purchase of these texts is not mandatory

Laura Beers and Geraint Thomas (eds.), Brave New World: Imperial and Democratic Nation-Building in Britain between the Wars, (2012)

Stephen Brooke, Sexual Politics: Sexuality, Family Planning and the British Left from the 1880s to the Present Day, (2011)

Krista Cowman, Women in British Politics, c.1689 - 1979, (2010)

Julie Gottlieb and Richard Toye (eds), The Aftermath of Suffrage: Women, Gender and Politics in Britain, 1918-1945, (2013)

Lesley A Hall, Sex, Gender and Social Change in Britain since 1880 (2nd ed., 2013)

Claire Langhamer, Women's Leisure in England, c.1920 - 1960, (2000)

Ross McKibbin, Classes and Cultures: England 1918 - 1951, (1998)

Billie Melman, Women and the Popular Imagination in the Twenties: Flappers and Nymphs, (1988)

Selina Todd, Young Women, Work, and Family in England 1918 - 1951, (2005)

Ina Zweininger-Bargielowska (ed.), Women in Twentieth Century Britain, (2001)

Lucy Bland, Modern Women on Trial: Sexual Transgression in the Age of the Flapper (2013)

Gisela Bock Women in European History (2002).



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