Essay about Women During The 19th Century

Essay about Women During The 19th Century

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Traditionally, women during the 19th century were expected to submit to the patriarch of the house and obediently follow his commands and the commands of society. According to Elaine Fortin, writer of “Early Nineteenth Century Attitudes Toward Women,” society’s expectations of married women included catering to their husbands by caring for the children, performing household chores, and preparing all meals so their husbands could focus all of their attention “on the matters of the world.” To broaden this definition of a wife’s duties during the 19th century, Judy Brady, an activist for women’s rights and renowned author, said women had to satisfy their husbands sexually but refrained from soliciting sex, listened to their husband’s problems but did not complain of a “wife’s duties,” were good cooks, waited hand-and-foot on their husbands and their guests, babysat the children, and more in her essay “I Want A Wife.” As an effort to overturn the stereotypical view of women and their marginalization, two waves of feminist movements were organized in order to establish “Women’s Rights.” In today’s society, women’s rights have improved in the United States, but women continue to struggle with inequity when compared to men.
A woman’s ability to exceed her expectations as a mother and wife has increased substantially since the 1900s. Mehroz Baig, a communications specialist and author of the Huffington Post, wrote “…[W]omen’s presence in the labor force has increased…from 30.3 million in 1970 to 72.7 million during 2006-2010.” In addition to women working outside the home, women were given the right to vote in 1920 and women such as Hillary Clinton have run for presidency, establishing women’s equity in the political system. Furthermore...


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... generalizations, double standards, and gender roles, but, through excessive perseverance and tribulation in the feminist movements, women have gained rights only known to men. Though modern society believes misogynistic and sexist ideals have reduced to nothing, women are still marginalized because men enjoy the privilege of being above women and men misinterpret religious scripture to subordinate women when compared to men. Nonetheless, the United States does not face gender discrimination as strongly as certain countries such as Jordan and Lesotho where women must submit entirely to the male head of the home before continuing with their life. In response, great leaders such as former President Jimmy Carter and Nobel Laureate Leymah Gbowee believe this bigotry can be overcome with perseverance and determination similar to the feminist movements in the 19th century.

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