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The Feminist Movement in America of 60’s - American History

Mar 14, 2010 3046 Words
The feminist movement in America of 60’s
The reasons of occurrence of the second wave of feminism in the beginning of 60’s Prominent features and differences of feminism of "a new wave» Movement for the rights of women and female liberation movement Legal victories

Timeline of key events
View on Popular Culture
The conclusion
Feminism (fr. Feminisme, from an armour. Femina - "woman") in wide sense - aspiration to equality of women with men in all spheres of a life of a society, in narrow sense – a women's movement which purpose is elimination of discrimination of women and equality of their rights with men. It is possible to name a synonym the term “emancipation of women”. Emancipation (lat.-emancipatio) Romans were designated by clearing from under the fatherly power. From here there was a general value-clearing from dependence and restriction. Feminist movement has long history which can be divided into two basic periods. The first is a so-called feminism of the first wave or old feminism (end ХVIII – first third ХХ centuries). At the heart of its ideology liberal doctrine about equality of the rights of citizens lay, the basic direction was sufragism– struggle for political equality of women. It has stopped the existence after its basic mission, and in the majority of the developed countries of the woman has been executed have received a vote on parliamentary elections. The second wave of feminism, "neofeminism", has risen on a wave of the left movements of the end of 1960th. Owing to it in neofeminism except the liberal direction continuing traditions of old feminism, the strong radical current is allocated. This feminism proclaims unity of interests of all women and necessity of their incorporated struggle against man's domination not only in sphere public, but also sphere of a private life. Some researchers allocate also the third wave of feminism (from the beginning 1990th) which is characterized by attention strengthening to theoretical questions, carrying over of the analysis of problems from a social and economic plane on philosophical level. Now the feminism remains the considerable social movement which has reached of the greatest successes in the field of culture. In the centre of attention of feminism in its forms there is a remaining gender inequality of women. 1. The reasons of occurrence of the second wave of feminism in the beginning of 60’s The success of sufragism has for a while suspended the general development female political movement, which was four decades subsequent almost in a hibernation condition. But, despite all achievements of feminism, still in all spheres of a life, men predominated. It has appeared that equality on a paper insufficiently, it was necessary to change the relation to the woman and in consciousness of people. Awakening or “female revival” has begun in 60’s years. Its epicenter of a steel of the USA, where exactly these years observed activisation of the democratic processes directed on liquidation of various forms of discrimination, and first of all racism. The women's movement has found new, frequently radical forms, that has found reflexion in its name – “female liberation movement” (Women’s liberation). The phrase "Women’s Liberation" was first used in the United States in 1964 and first appeared in print in 1966. By 1968, although the term Women’s Liberation Front appeared in the magazine Ramparts, it was starting to refer to the whole women’s movement. The new wave of struggle for emancipation has been caused by structural changes in society and, first of all, - substantial growth of a share of female work in a social production. So, to 1960, in the USA women made more than one third of manpower of the country, thus 54 % of workers of women were married, and 33 % had children that testifies to the business factors inducing women to join in a public industrial practice. With acquisition of experience of women’s political activity it was steel and more self-assured, in the forces. The impression is made that modern movement for clearing of women went a similar way. At its initial stage struggle for success the same specific goals – such as the right to abortion, the divorce right, legal prosecution of tyrants and the men beating the wives was developed. "Option" was a keyword: women aspired to dispose of their own life and, first of all – own body. The labour market became one more important field of activity of a women's movement at the present stage. Here struggle of women is conducted for the right to work reception, equality an advancement of possibilities on the career steps, equal payment for equal work. Thus, the feminism causes essential and irreversible changes in a life of the woman in all that concerns its social status, its sexual functioning, its place in a society. These processes make considerable impact on consciousness growth, both women, and men. 2. Prominent features and differences of feminism of "a new wave» Feminist movement of 60’s and the beginnings of 70’s has received a little extravagant colouring, being shown in causing, even shocking traditionally adjusted the public by unusual slogans, forms of expression of the protest. Aspiring to awakening female consciousness, to clearing of public opinion of inertia patriarch the focused moral installations, feminists used, for example, receptions of "the vulgar theatre”. In leaflets arisen in 1968г. To the American organisation under the scandalous name "Witch" it was told: “Everything that is repressive, has exclusively man's orientation, enviously, is noted by Puritanism and authoritativeness, should become a target of your criticism. Your weapon – your boundless fine imagination. Your force proceeds from you as from women, and it repeatedly amplifies from teamwork with your sisters. Your debt – to release your brothers (they want it or not) and from stereotypes of sexual roles”. The feminism, as well as any other political movement, could not avoid radicalism, "leftism" as some kind of illnesses of growth. Time, that sends a maturity of estimations, moderation and suspension of actions, at last, theoretical validity Was required. It was promoted substantially by creation of a network of so-called female researches (women’s studies), called simultaneously to conduct educational work and to bring the scientific base under movement for clearing of women. Female researches became an integral part of curriculums of many universities, there were many specialised research centres. 3. Movement for the rights of women and female liberation movement The second branch of movement – «radical, left, often socialist feminism which denied idea of equality with men. In its frameworks was considered that political reforms never will release women, the main accent should be made on women, instead of on the state. The movement purpose – to change a way of thought and action, to overestimate a female essence, instead of to adapt the woman for man's values» Participants of this movement considered that women as group have the specific interests, which they should struggle together, irrespective of social or a racial accessory. Personal changes became the basic arena of struggle. This branch of movement operated more at local level. According to its participants, change of a society of the woman should begin with itself. This branch with-stood from set of groups (so-called «groups of awakening of consciousness»), in which were not the leader and accurate structure. A little later, within the limits of it direction, the crisis centers for victims of rape, shelters for the wives suffering violence in a family, medical clinics, the female centers, the public co-operative societies, the centers for rendering of legal services, services on employment, female cafes and restaurants, female theatrical groups, art galleries, «emancipating schools», bookshops, shops on sale of craft products and a network of "female researches» have been created. The new women's movement has affected programs of almost all parties in the western countries. Left parties have appeared the most susceptible to feministic ideas. Many members of feminist movement became members of the left and green parties. Besides, in the majority of the countries the institutes which are taking up the problems of women (committees of the equal status, the ministry of affairs of women, etc.) have been created. Though the majority of feminists and today specify in remaining problems and the discrimination facts, position of women in the West is real has changed very strongly. Women actively participate in various social movements and institutes; the female political representation has sharply increased in 1980th, especially in the Scandinavian countries where women have received to one third of places in parliament. 4. Legal victories

Amongst the most significant legal victories of the movement after the formation of NOW were a 1967 Executive Order extending full Affirmative Action rights to women, Title IX and the Women's Educational Equity Act (1972 and 1975, educational equality), Title X (1970, health and family planning), the Equal Credit Opportunity Act (1974), the Pregnancy Discrimination Act of 1978, the illegalization of marital rape and the legalization of no-fault divorce in all states, a 1975 law requiring the U.S. Military Academies to admit women, and many Supreme Court cases, perhaps most notably, Reed v. Reed of 1971 and Roe v. Wade of 1973. However, the changing of the social attitudes towards women are usually considered the greatest success of the women's movement. _5. Timeline of key events_

The rise of the second-wave
The Second Sex by Simone de Beauvoir (1949) translated from French to English Late 1950s Awareness rises that many women are disgruntled by their status in society and their inability to hold successful careers or achieve equality. 1960 The Food and Drug Administration approves combined oral contraceptive pills. They are made available in 1961. 1961 President Kennedy makes women's rights a key issue of the New Frontier, and names women (such as Esther Peterson) to many high-ranking posts in his administration. 50,000 women in 60 cities, mobilized by Women Strike for Peace, protest above ground testing of nuclear bombs and tainted milk. Helen Gurley Brown writes Sex and the Single Girl.

The Commission's report finds discrimination against women in every aspect of American life and outlines plans to achieve equality. Specific recommendations for women in the workplace include fair hiring practices, paid maternity leave, and affordable childcare. Twenty years after it is first proposed, the Equal Pay Act establishes equality of pay for men and women performing equal work. However, it does not cover domestics, agricultural workers, executives, administrators or professionals. Betty Friedan's The Feminine Mystique is published, becomes a best-seller, and lays the groundwork for the feminist movement. Alice Rossi presents "Equality Between the Sexes: An Immodest Proposal" at the American Academy of Arts and Sciences conference. 1964

Title XII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 bars employment discrimination on account of sex, race, etc. by private employers, employment agencies, and unions. The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission is established; in its first five years, 50,000 complaints of gender discrimination are received. 1965 Casey Hayden and Mary King circulate a memo about sexism in Civil Rights Movement. The Supreme Court case Griswold v. Connecticut strikes down the only remaining state law banning the use of contraceptives by married couples. The case Weeks v. Southern Belle marks a major triumph in the fight against restrictive labor laws and company regulations on the hours and conditions of women’s work, opening many previously male-only jobs to women. The "Woman Question" is raised for the first time at a Students for Democratic Society (SDS) conference. EEOC commissioners are appointed to enforce the Civil Rights Act. Among them there is only one woman, Aileen Hernandez, a future president of NOW. The Time Is NOW

Twenty-eight women, among them Betty Friedan, found the National Organization for Women (NOW) to function as a civil rights organization for women. Betty Friedan becomes its first president. The group is the largest women's group in the U.S. and pursues its goals through extensive legislative lobbying, litigation, and public demonstrations. 1967 Executive Order 11375 expands President Johnson's 1965 affirmative action policy to cover discrimination based on sex, resulting in federal agencies and contractors taking active measures to ensure that all women as well as minorities have access to educational and employment opportunities equal to white males. Women’s liberation groups begin springing up all over the nation. NOW begins petitioning the EEOC to end sex-segregated want ads and adopts a Bill of Rights for Women. Senator Eugene McCarthy introduces the Equal Rights Amendment (ERA) in the US Senate. New York Radical Women is formed by Shulamith Firestone and Pam Allen. Anne Koedt organizes "consciousness raising" groups. The National Welfare Rights Organization is formed. From Miss America protests to revolution

Robin Morgan leads members of New York Radical Women to protest the Miss America Pageant of 1968, which they decried as sexist and racist. The first national women's liberation conference is held in Lake Villa, a suburb of Chicago, Illinois. The National Abortion Rights Action League (NARAL) is founded by Betty Friedan and others. Coretta Scott King assumes leadership of the African-American Civil Rights Movement following the death of her husband, and expands the movement's platform to include women's rights. Shirley Chisholm is elected to the United States Congress that same year, the first black congresswoman. The EEOC rules sex-segregated help wanted ads in newspapers illegal, a ruling which is upheld in 1973 by the Supreme Court. Women now are able to apply for higher-paying jobs previously opened only to men. New York feminists bury a dummy of "Traditional Womanhood" at the all-women's Jeanette Rankin Brigade demonstration against the Vietnam War in Washington, D.C. For the first time, feminists use the slogan "Sisterhood is Powerful." The first public speakout against abortion laws is held in New York City. Notes from the First Year, a women's liberation theoretical journal, is published by the New York Radical Women. NOW celebrates Mother's Day with the slogan "Rights, Not Roses". Mary Daly, professor of theology at Boston College, publishes a scathing criticism of the Catholic Church's view and treatment of women entitled "The Church and the Second Sex." 1969

The radical organization, Redstockings, organizes.
Members of Redstockings disrupt a hearing on abortion laws of the New York Legislature when the panel of witnesses turns out to be 14 men and a nun. The groups demands repeal, not reform, of abortion laws. Redstockings popularizes slogans such as "Sisterhood is Powerful", and "The Personal is Political" which become buzzwords of the feminist movement. California adopts a "no fault" divorce law which allows couples to divorce by mutual consent. It is the first state to do so; by 1985 every state has adopted a similar law. Legislation is also passed regarding equal division of common property. _6. _View on Popular Culture

This wave of feminism helped to educate women and allowed them to see their personal lives as politicized and reflective of the sexist structure of power seen throughout society. “One project of second wave feminism was to create ‘positive’ images of women, to act as a counterweight to the dominant images circulating in popular culture and to raise women’s consciousness of their oppressions. Feminists during the movement viewed popular culture as just another example of gender equalities that tried to prove the idea that woman are classified into false images of how they should act and the roles they should play. They believed that the mass media was influencing women to act in certain ways. Artist Helen Reddy’s song “I Am Woman” played a large role in popular culture and became the feminist anthem; Reddy came to be known as a "feminist poster girl" or a "feminist icon". Throughout second wave feminism other organizations started to form, such as the NOW and different black organizations emerged. {draw:frame}

The conclusion
Influence of political, economic, social changes on position of women was very inconsistent. Traditionally the woman erected to a pedestal, saw its role mainly in creation and preservation of the family centre, in education of children. But it did not prevent to use female work on a laborious work and to shut eyes to an inequality in wages of men and women. When the requirement for a labour has increased, women have recruited ranks of hired workers. And it besides that long time the married woman could not own the property, sign contracts on its own behalf and even to dispose of own wages. Centuries before in the developed countries of Europe and America the equal rights of citizens irrespective of a floor (in the USA – in 1920г have been proclaimed were required.). The society began to depart gradually from a rigid binding of those or other economic and behavioural norms on the basis of a floor, from traditional concepts about constructed on the gender factor of division of house, parental duties and labour activity out of door. Feministic ideas, in my opinion, and keep today the urgency. Let women have already achieved much, but original equality in a society is not carried out yet. Still in the politician and economy men predominate, with doubt concern progressive, business women. On a paper laws proclaim equality, and in practice - old, patriarchal foundations in a family prevail, the man still considers itself as the owner in the house and in a society. Literature

Bovuar de S. The second floor. М, Spb., 1997. 832с. Betty Friedan. It Changed My Life: Writings on the Women’s Movement. Shenar A.Kuda goes feminist movement?//Today. 1996. On April, 26th. С.6. Evans S. Born for freedom: Пер with English М, 1993. 320с. Popkov L.N. Influense of a women's movement on change socially-legal status women of the USA in ХIХ-ХХ centuries//Gender reconstruction of political systems / Red.-sost. Н. M.Stepanova, Е. V.Kochkina. SPb.: Алетейя, 2004. With. 110. Temkina A.A.women's movement as public: history and the theory.//Gender reconstruction of political systems / Red.-sost. Н. M. Stepanova, Е. V.Kochkina. SPb.: Алетейя, 2004. With. 47. Chapter 3. Gender equality in a historical retrospective show Wikipedia:

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