Conservatism, gender and the politics of everyday life, 1950s–1980s
in Rethinking right-wing women
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This chapter offers a critical analysis of the political and social scientific surveys of the post-war decades to provide some fresh perspectives on the rise and fall of the gender gap in voting pattern. It examines the period in which female voters in Britain were most inclined to support the Conservative Party, namely the 1950s and 1960s. The chapter also examines how the Conservative Party adapted its policy and communications to the key social and cultural changes of the 1950s and 1960s. It suggests that one of the main reasons for the Conservative appeal to women was a plausible and sincere rhetorical invocation of the hard-working, ambitious and consumerist, but still traditionally minded, housewife or part-time worker. This approach helped the party to speak to the aspirations and anxieties of lower middle-class and upper working-class women.

Rethinking right-wing women

Gender and the Conservative Party, 1880s to the present

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