Women, Race, Class: Angela Davis' Perception Of Women Liberation

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Angela Davis is an American political activist who is known for being a radical African-American educator and an activist for civil rights and other social issues. She is better known for her book, “Women, Race, and Gender,” which is a powerful story of the women’s liberation movement in the United States in the 1960’s. She summarizes how racism has been prevalent from abolitionist days to present. Each chapter examines a different aspect feminist struggles for equality throughout history mostly targerting the inequality of black women during the feminist movement. Davis provides examples of how black women still struggle for equality in society whether it is at work, school, or in public. She explains that racism interfered with the ability of women’s rights movement to truly achieve equality, leaving black women to be at the bottom of the social triangle. According to Davis, the white middle class women did not do enough to challenge the inequality brought about by capitalism. White women were bought on my capitalism, ultimately leading the feminist movement accepted conditions of capitalism and did not attempt to overthrow existing economic order. The movement was never radical, thus, it could never address deeply entrenched inequality. It was more like maintaining the status quo. She focused on ways that helped explain why inequality worked the way it did because of race, class, and gender. Davis’s main argument is that the white feminist movement did not understand the needs of the black women community. Racism interfered with the ability of women’s rights movement to truly achieve equality.

Davis starts off the book is a very raw manner. She discusses the history of why black women are so strong. She establishes the upcoming feminist struggle by highlighting the legacy of slavery among black people, black women in particular, describing how black women were doing the subhuman labour of slavery. Davis begins to explain that slavery is the only time black women truly enjoyed “equality” with men in terms of oppression. Black women might as well be considered genderless. During the time, the oppression of women and men were almost the same because they were field workers. However, the only difference was that women also dealt with sexual abuse. It is important for Davis to include how black women have always been hard working. They come from a background that forced them to complete the same tasks as men while having to carry and raise children. This is important to remember because black women were doing the same work as men, however, they were still not qualified to vote during the women’s rights movement. It is very important to note that Davis does not sugar coat any of the information she provides her readers with. She presented information about how black women were forced to work while being pregnant and even flogged if they failed to fulfill their duties that day. Often times, even when the baby was born, women would carry their children in a sack while completing extremely barbarous work. Davis introduces the idea of how black women dealt with the terrible burden of equality in oppression. Without this important background history, the readers would not get a grip on what Davis is trying to argue. It is important for readers to get a sense of the history black women had to struggle with in order to understand how they struggle in today’s world as well.

Women, Class, and Race sheds light on very important topics in American history. In the book, Davis summarizes the history of black women’s struggle. It is significant to today’s society because black women continuously deal with oppression whether it is at the workplace, school, or your local shopping center. Remembering the history of black women allows for one to create solutions and try to prevent it from happening again. It markets the intersections of class, race, and gender. This book teaches its readers the history behind the struggle of black women. Books like this are the first step towards gender equality for women of color. It teaches everyone that if one labels themselves as a feminist, then they should be fighting for every women no matter their status, race, or class. 

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Women, Race, Class: Angela Davis’ Perception Of Women Liberation. (2021, July 28). WritingBros. Retrieved June 22, 2024, from https://writingbros.com/essay-examples/women-race-class-angela-davis-perception-of-women-liberation/
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Women, Race, Class: Angela Davis’ Perception Of Women Liberation. [online]. Available at: <https://writingbros.com/essay-examples/women-race-class-angela-davis-perception-of-women-liberation/> [Accessed 22 Jun. 2024].
Women, Race, Class: Angela Davis’ Perception Of Women Liberation [Internet]. WritingBros. 2021 Jul 28 [cited 2024 Jun 22]. Available from: https://writingbros.com/essay-examples/women-race-class-angela-davis-perception-of-women-liberation/
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