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History of Feminism in the USA

The history of feminism in the USA is a separate page in the pastimes of the country related to females fighting for their rights. Though the movement has reached its main aims of women equality with men, it initiated a vast discussion respectively females substituting males in everything. However, expressing of the former their viewpoint openly and demonstrating their independence resulted in a gender equality and harmonic development of a society. Therefore, feminism in its liberal form has the right to exist in order to give women a chance of expressing themselves and realizing that their significance for the community is identical to the one of the men.

Analyzing feminism, it is important to have a quick historic review of the way the movement formed in order to realize the reasons its liberal trend seems more productive. Feminism started developing with early women’s suffrage movement after the Civil War in the 1850s. It was the time when ladies expressed their opinion that “women’s secondary position in society was the result of some mistake [<….]>”. Women decided that firstly, they needed the right to vote equally with men. They supported their new vision by the fact that their inequality with males was caused by some old-fashioned traditions, a custom to hide ladies’ opinion from the public, etc. Thus, women needed a reform of their public position to have a chance of being independent and cooperating with men in all aspects. It took quite a long time for an early women’s movement to grow into feminists because they were seeking for the best ways to express the ideas they wanted to convey.

Thought suffragists followed the aims similar to those of the feminists, and their main goal was gaining the right to vote. They seemed quite loyal as compared to later feminists. Feminist movement reemerged only in the 1960s with the changing roles of women in families.² Feminists at that time defined a radical feminist as a “woman, who rejected theinstitution of marriage both in theory and practice”. They were completely devoted to each other and gave birth to a lesbian movement. The radical character of feminism became obvious. Feminists forced the government to perform an educational reform that could allow women to study at universities. Females united in groups and expressed their social and political views together. After the adoption of the Equal Rights Amendment in 1972 that gave the ladies the right to vote, the feminist movement was taken seriously.

The topic of the given research is highly significant as modern women interpret feminism in the most suitable way for them. However, if feminism is liberal and does not cross the borders of common sense stating that women can substitute men in everything, the results of the movement can be effective. Women should be aware that feminism aims to change some of the old issues for the better and not to break them. Numerous feminist translations of the Bible confirm that ladies are concerned about the absence of their voices in the Scripture. Gomola claims that women’s interest to the Bible’s translation gives provide them an opportunity to understand themselves better. He states that “feminist translation of the Bible reflects and reinforces a new, different understanding of the Bible in the community of faith [<…]>.4 Thus, the resolve of a modern woman to find the revelation of female voice in the Bible is reasonable. This is not an act of aggression against men. However, being aware of their importance for the Scripture brings a feeling of harmony to ladies.

Considering Ryan’s work devoted to feminism, it is possible to state that she is concentrated on the historic background of the movement and its revolution. Analyzing the data, the author states that “the various groups [of feminists] did contain distinctive characteristics, and the most noticeable was how they employed feminist practices”. Ryan clearly notes the evolution of feminists’ views moving ffrom self-identity to self-awareness of commonality between them. Thus, she defines a constant gaining of feminists’ perspectives through personal views changing with time. Consequently, it is impossible to blame feminists for making efforts to adjust to the requirements of each historic period.

While Ryan stays more or less neutral to feminism and gives reasonable explanations of the reasons feminism has undergone some transformations with time, Fuchs is more precautious about this movement. The latter states that whereas feminism started with different goals and managed to make men and women equal in their rights, the modern variant of a movement is aggressive and even dangerous for normal functioning of the society. The feminists believe “that sexual activity outside of marriage is fine, and even should be encouraged as a means of “liberation”. They hold that unlimited access to abortion and artificial birth control is a fundamental “right” and that women should be identical to men in every way”. The author warns women of artificial contraception and abortion that may have negative consequences for their health. Fuchs seeks to convey the idea of a sacral union established between a wife and a husband in a marriage that cannot be violated by any feminist ideas.

Researching the aforementioned aspects, it is possible to state that feminism is a controversial phenomenon in the history. The movement formed due to objective factors, wars and industrialization; and many years of silence forced women to express their opinion in a radical form. However, the idea of liberal feminism that supports social and political equality of a man and a woman is the closest to me. In my opinion, a family should stay in its classical revelation when a husband is a supporter, and his wife is an equal partner who takes care of their home and develops professionally. Modern ladies are capable of performing these activities due to numerous working schedule opportunities and nursing services offered for children.

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