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The Changing Role of Women in the American Family - Essay Example

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This paper explores the role of women in the American family and its development over time. The ideal American woman at the onset of the 20th Century was “a sheltered lady, swathed in silk and muslin and in innocence and purity, but nowadays this is not the case…
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The Changing Role of Women in the American Family
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Download file to see previous pages Everything seemed to conspire to put women in their place, physically, emotionally and economically, in fact, confine them to one place - the home. In the 1830s, for example, not one college or university would admit women. A little later, a number of educational institutions were set up that catered for women, but these were no more than finishing schools, teaching feminine arts.5 At around this period, the first women activists in the US made their presence felt, when Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Lucretia Mott, and Susan B. Anthony put together the first women's rights convention, which came up with the historic Declaration of Sentiments. The organized demand for women's equality was on its way, as more and more women across the US picked up the fight. Now, in the 21st century, the battle seems almost to be won, but not every woman wants to be in a high-flying, powerful career. The rights of those who do not want to follow such a course are equally valid, the fight for equal rights included the entitlement of all women to chose how to live in a way which makes for fulfillment.
Before presenting my factual research findings, which I consider go some way to support my argument; that the impetus for change was not entirely due to feminist activity, but to a huge variety of historical and socio-economic factors, I will first examine my primary sources. I believe that these show, by raising interesting questions and linking to the reality of womens' lives today, that women make their own choices where possible, choices not always conforming to feminist ideology. The selection of these novels was not designed to belittle the great work and dedication of those who sought to improve women's lives, but to present...
This paper focuses on the role of a woman in the American family. The role that women perform in the American family has changed dramatically in the last 100 years, influencing an equally pervasive makeover in society. This is the main topic of this paper, which will attempt to sketch some of the major changes that led to the social, political and economic emancipation of the American women. The author does not believe that the inter-relations and implications of these changes are fully understood as yet.
Author considers that the material from the research supports and emphasizes the point that, with or without the women’s rights movement, women would still be enjoying some of the freedom and parity with men that they do today. This is the main argument presented here: that the political pressures brought on by the women’s rights movement, from the abolitionists and suffragettes in the 1830s to the feminists of later years, only added sound and color to the equal rights campaign. The movement only served to call attention to the need for such changes. But the impetus for the actual changes sprang from wars, depression and industrialization, economic prosperity, the advances of science and technology, changes in eating habits, the advent of birth control pills, etc. Nevertheless, it must be acknowledged that the feminists gave a voice to millions, despite in-fighting and divisions, media ridicule and so forth; their contribution was very important in bringing about changes to the female role. ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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