What Was the Role of Women From 1920 Through 1930?

role-women-1920-through-1930 Credit: Keystone-France/Hulton Archive/Getty Images

Post World War I, social changes and the acquiring of the right to vote led to a decade of increased freedom for women in the 1920s. This freedom included working outside the home, becoming more involved in politics and radical changes in fashions.

The 19th Amendment to the Constitution was ratified in 1920 and gave American women the right to vote. Women started to become involved in politics on a local and federal level, forming committees to get involved in social issues.

Women entered the workforce for the first time during the war to take the jobs of the men who had been drafted. Many of the woman found that they liked participating in the workforce. After the war, widowed women continued to work to support themselves and their kids. Casualties among young men in the war left many women either widowed or without suitors and forced to provide for themselves. Women began to take jobs in small shops, big department stores and even offices.

Wanting to depart from the stoic social restrictions of the pre-war period, some young women took on a less conservative clothing style and a new, rebellious attitude. Known as “flappers,” these women were characterized by strong language and progressive sexual behavior.