Changing Role of Women

working life hard for women during the industrial revolution

before the industrial era...

Before the industrial revolution, women raised their children and did housework. Their jobs on the farm included managing dairy, gardens, orchards, and family farms. During the industrial revolution, women moved with family to cities offering jobs in the textile mills and many other factories.

factory life is time consuming

Working in the factory was hard on women because they were expected to work shifts 12 to 14 hours and then go home and do their household duties. Women did not see partners during their working periods and spent little time with their children. Factory owners preferred to hire women because they were cheaper employees and easy to control. During this era, women were paid half of a mans wage and had few rights. The factory life was not easy for a woman in Britain, and also very dangerous.

dangers of working in a factory

Being a woman factory worker was not only difficult, but dangerous. Lace workers often had deformed ribs and chests as a result of long hours spent over their work and made them more at risk of getting a lung diseas. Also endangering workers lungs, was the unclean and dusty air within the mill walls. Long hair and skirts were a cause of women getting caught up in machinery without safety devices.

being a housemaid in the industrial era

Being a housemaid in this era was dirty and difficult. Women lived in tiny attic rooms and were up before dawn doing work. They cleaned the house, washed and ironed clothes, helped prepare meals, and cleaned the kitchen. After a long day, workers then went to their bedrooms and waited to start again. Housemaids had little to no time off and with their time off, were expected to go to church. Some women would argue that factory life was better than being a maid because factory wokers had a lot more freedom and could do what they wanted in their free time, unlike housemaids.