Evans, Sara M. Born for Liberty – A History of Women in America. New York: Free Press Paperback, A Division of Simon & Schuster Inc., 1989 Ferguson, Robert A. The American Enlightenment 1750-1820. London, England: Harvard University Press, 1997 Jacob, Margaret, and Mack, Phyllis. Women and the Enlightenment.
Sisterhood Historically, women have been relegated to a limited role in society. In our male dominated culture, a considerable number of people view the natural role of women to be that of mothers and wives. Thus, for many, women are assumed to be more suited for childbearing and homemaking than for involvement in public life. Despite these widespread and governing beliefs, women, frustrated and tired of their inferiority and subordination, began seeking personal and political equality, including equal pay, reproductive choice, and freedom from conventional societal restraints. Massive opposition to a demand for women’s equality with men prompted the organization of women to fight collectively for their rights.
The Pioneers of Womens Suffrage Are women really inferior to men? Of course not, but this is the mindset that has been a part of the world since the beginning. For a long time, even women did not believe that they measured up to men. In her book Northanger Abbey, Jane Austen wrote, "A women, especially, if she have the misfortune of knowing anything, should conceal it as well as she can (Gurko 1974, 5)." Beginning in the early 1900's, though, women began to want changes in society.
In the 1890s, American women emerged as a major force for social reform. Millions joined civic organizations and extended their roles from domestic duties to concerns about their communities and environments. These years, between 1890 and 1920, were a time of many social changes that later became known as the Progressive Era. In this time era, millions of Americans organized associations to come up with solutions to the many problems that society was facing, and many of these problems were staring American women right in the face. Women began to speak out against the laws that were deliberately set against them.
Living the Legacy: The Women's Rights Movement 1848-1998. The National Women's History Project, 1998. http://www.legacy98.org/ Hole, Judith. Rebirth of Feminism. New York: Quadrangle Books, 1971. K., Esther.
Biographical and Historical Contexts.” Ed. Margo Culley. New York: W.W. Norton, 1994. Print Chametzky, Jules. “[Edna and the “Women Question”]” The Awakening: An Authoritative Text.
Johns Hopkins University Press, 2006. Phillips, Melanie, The Ascent of Woman: A History of the Suffragette Movement (Abacus, 2004). Pomeroy, Sarah B. Goddess, Whores, Wives, and Slaves: Women in Classical Antiquity. New York: Schocken Books. 1975.
“Male and female represent the two sides of the great radical dualism,” wrote American journalist and women’s rights advocate Margaret Fuller in 1843, “there is no wholly masculine man, no purely feminine woman... Nature provides exceptions to every rule.” (((Margaret Fuller, Jeffrey Steele, The Essential Margaret Fuller, Page 310, American Women Writers, 1992))). Her statement during the mid-nineteenth-century was symptomatic of the changing dynamics of the traditional household and workplace in Western Europe and North America as a result of rapid industrialisation, and improvements in education and medical standards. This essay will discuss how women who took part in this transformation and ventured into the workplace – usually in low-skilled labour jobs - were represented in artwork between 1750 and 1900. Based on the visual analysis of François Millet’s The Gleaners (1857, fig.