Gloria Steinem

Topics: Gloria Steinem, Betty Friedan, Bella Abzug Pages: 3 (893 words) Published: February 21, 2013
Gloria Steinem

Over the course of the years, our country has changed in many ways. Whether it's politically or socially, we have the people of this nation to thank for how we are today. A woman that has made a difference in the United States is Gloria Steinem. She has defended the rights of not only women, but humanity itself. The time period Gloria Steinem grew up in affected her outlook on life, and inspired the movements that have brought us to have the rights that women have today. Gloria Steinem was born March 25, 1934. She didn't have a normal upbringing; she spent most of the year in Michigan, and spent winters in California or Florida. Due to the constant traveling, she wasn't able to regularly attend school until she was 11 years old. Around that time, her parents divorced. Steinem was left to live with her mother in poverty. Her mother later suffered of depression so severely that she became incapacitated. Steinem took care of her mother until she went to college, where she studied government. An unusual choice women made during that time, it was obvious she didn't want to live the life most women were in the 1950's. During that time, life for women was centered on family and domestic duties. After many years of suffering from the Great Depression, and WWII, women who had held wartime jobs were expected to abandon their careers in order to provide employment for men returning from war. Women were encouraged to stay at home, raise children and care for their husbands. Some women however stayed in the paid workforce, but were paid less than men for the same jobs. Steinem didn't want to live like that, she later said to People magazine. "In the 1950s, once you married you became what your husband was, so it seemed like the last choice you'd ever have…I'd already been the very small parent of a very big child—my mother. I didn't want to end up taking care of someone else," speaking of having to take care of her mother for so many years because of her...
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