Women's Suffrage: Several Waves of Feminism That Changed the Society

2686 (6 pages)
Download for Free
Important: This sample is for inspiration and reference only

For centuries women around the world have fought for Women’s Rights. In a global standpoint women have less opportunities in comparison than men, less political representation, less access to education, and a greater risk to their safety. Being a Women around the world comes with a variety of difficulties that are not faced by males.

Since the early 1800s women have been fighting for equal rights. The women’s right movement in America began with the fight for women’s suffrage in the first wave of the Feminist Movment. During the 19th century the reform began to evolve, it first began by having a large spectrum of goals and ideas before they solely began to focus on securing the ability for women to vote. The leaders for women’s suffrage involving mainly older upper middle class white women often did not agree with tactics and what to prioritize within the federal or state reforms. The women’s suffrage movement ultimately became political training for a variety of early women pioneers in Congress (History 1). The women’s rights convention which was hosted in Seneca Falls, New York in 1848, was the beginning of the fight for women’s right to vote . They fought for fifty years, supporters such as Susan B. Anthony, Elizabeth Cady Stanton, and many other women’s right activist, continuously made efforts to educate the public about women’s rights but specifically women’s suffrage. This was the first large movement for women, they fought for the same rights as men had. Many argue that this is the movement that set the road for the fight for women’s equality (Womens 1).

Although the fight for women’s equality began in the 1800s, it is a fight that we continue to fight for. In the last 60 years, the pay gap for white women went from 41 to 20 cents and for black women it went from 57 to 38 cents, but although there has been an improvement the pay gap continues (Washington 1). Although we have fought for over a century of legislation and activism inequality continues. The pay gap is not only numbers,it is not only the 77 cents to every dollar a white male makes. The pay has has been used for decades by our society as a method to belittle the contributions women have made for the public, as well as a tactic of prolonging the division of labor in the home between genders (Washington 2)

The inequality cannot simply be solved with Legal precautions as it is not only unequal pay for the same jobs between genders. There are gendered stereotypes that encourage women into pursuing jobs that pay less, and are focused on caring for others.During the mid-19th century a harmful cycle appeared. Women shifted towards professions that were demanding of domestic or ‘feminized skills’ (Washington 3) An example is nursing, it is a profession that is consistent of 90 percent females. Nursing began during the civil war,during 1861 the United States Sanitary Commission, sent thousands of women into the war to volunteer while they would pay males to organize nursing supplies and coordinate services.When the war ended, the women moved their nursing experience into hospitals, and their salary continued to be lower than those of men in medicine (Washington 4)

According to a 1964 Time magazine article emphasized the issue that “The new U.S. equal pay law may cost women some of their jobs because — other things being equal — many companies prefer to hire men.” (Times 11). It has also been proven by the 1970s, the Institute for Research on Poverty looked further into the reasoning behind why women with a higher education were not as likely than men to reach their full annual income potential. They found that many women were forced into taking less demanding jobs or part- time jobs because they had to care for their children. Because of the stereotypes from the 1900’s women were forced into belittling themselves for men. But as time has gone on as a society in America we have gotten better with the traditional roles that women are meant to stay home and men are meant to be the breadwinners, women and men are seen as a bit more equal than the 1970’s.

But the wage gap continues between women and men, it is not just a problem in America as there is an incredibly large difference all around the world. According to OECD’s list woman Korea has the most significant wage gap between genders with a wage gapof 34.6%. A woman in Korea earns on an average of 65.4% of a man’s income.To better comprehend the difference between wages an example being that a women yearly income could be $32,500 while in comparison to a male’s yearly earning would be put at $50,000 (Buisness 25) And although over half of the female population is in the workforce of around 56 percent receiving annual incomes, women in Korea are only twenty percent behind the rate of male employment in Korea. Many more counties have a large division of wage gap for example Estonian a women’s annual earnings is 71.7% in comparison to the average female income, which is the second largest pay gap according to OECD. According to Business insider in 2017, around 80% of women were actively working. It is also good to take into consideration that females make up more than half of the population, for every 113 women there is 100 men. (Business 26)

Equal pay is not the only issue women have been fighting for. There have been movement for women’s liberation such as The Feminist Movement, they fight reports on political issues such as women’s suffrage, equal pay, reproductive rights, and sexual harassment. According to the oxford dictionary feminism is defined as “the advocacy of women’s rights on the basis of the equality of the sexes.”a person who supports the belief that women should have the same rights and opportunities as men”. Feminism is a movement that has spread through weastern continents, there have been three different waves. The first wave as I previously stated was the fight for upper class women’s fight for suffrage.

No time to compare samples?
Hire a Writer

✓Full confidentiality ✓No hidden charges ✓No plagiarism

The second wave of feminism occurred in America in the 1960’s and lasted through the 1980’s. The moment later spread throughout weastern countries. Although the first wave of feminism had a focus on women’s right to vote, the second wave focused on a more issues such as reproductive rights, sexuality, women in the workplace and bringing attention towards domestic violence (Womans 7) They made an attempt to input political reforms by attempting to place “The Equal Rights Amendment (ERA) to the United States Constitution, in which they were defeated by anti-feminists” (Woman 8). A fight that they women made strides for was a method of oral contraception just for females, and in 1960, the Food and Drug Administration approved the pill for oral contraceptive. This method of anti contraception made it so women would have the ability to continue their careers and not have to pause their lives in case they become impregnated. (Woman 9)

Then there was the third wave of feminism that occured in the 1990’s to present day. Almost all the issues that were being fought in the 60’s are still being fought till this day. An issue that has been especially present in our soceity that was fught for in The Second Wave of Femenism is abortion, an we continue to fight and argue for till this very day. In the 1970’s in the United States abortion became legal,but recent debate has had an upstur as many male congressmen beilive that abortion should be illegal again. In places such as Poland, El Salvador, and recently in America in states like Louisiana, Ohio, Kentucky, Mississippi, Georgia, Alabama and Missouri; abortions have becaem illegal and if sone legal procotions will be taken (Time 2). The restrection of a womans right to do with her own body as she pleases such as have an abortion is that is what is better for her sitation is being confined. The restrection is extended in all cases inculding rape, it will be taking away all rights a woman has for her body. It is a design to control and force females into following the stereotypical roles that have been assigned due to their gender. “They are an affront to their human rights and dignity and constitute gender discrimination. For transgender and queer people who need abortions, such restrictive laws are the latest in a long line of attacks on their rights and freedoms (Times 2).” According to anning abortions isn’t particularly effective. When governments restrict access to The World Health Organization the banning or restriction of abortion, does not actually prevent them from occuring as they will continue at the same rate but it makes it so abortions will get less safe and harmful (Times 1). Many in congress beilive that abortions are against their religions and if the woman does not want the child they they should be given up for adoptionbut fail to see that thousands of kids are put into thefoster system, according to Childrens Rights more than 690,000 children were placed in the American. foster care system in 2017 (Children 3).

It is possible that women’s reproductive rights are being changed due to the lack of female representation in congress. In the world, only seven out of one hundred and fifty women are elected to be heads of the state. And out of one hundred and ninety two only eleven are elected to be heads of government in the world. All around the world female mayors and elected councillors are under represented (Guardian 7). Women having representation in congress is little to none all around the world, and although in America we have gotten more female representation is it still not close to male representation. According to NPR (NPR 2) “Women make up approximately 19 percent of all members of Congress and less than 25 percent of all state legislators. They also make up six of the nation’s 50 governors, or 12 percent.” And what is astonishing is that female representation in congress is the highest it’s ever been but is still very low in comparison to male representation. And it is a fact that one hundred percent of the presidents in America have been male,but it is an improvement that female candidates are beginning to run for presidency. It is also interesting to note that laws being made for women specifically reproductive rights are being controlled by a male majority.

Although there is being improvements in America females all around the world continue to struggle for a variety of reasons.One being education, many are unable to attend school do to being in poverty and not being able to afford it. According to Their World ( World 5) “It is estimated that 15 million girls – mainly those living in poverty – will never set foot in a classroom, compared to 10 million boys.’ Many families around the world use all their money to send their first born son to school, in hopes that he will pursue a career that will allow him to support his family. But poverty is only one out of many examples as to the lack of education females receive in comparison to males. One reason being the traditional stereotypes that women are required to stay home and fulfill their domestic responsibilities. But in countries where girls are forced to get married at a young age they are unable to gain an education as they are forced to perform domestic duties (World 9)

There are more than twenty countries worldwide that do not allow for females to obtain an education. One of those locations being Afghanistan where only nine out of ten women are able to read and only around forty percent of girls have the ability to attend elementary school, and with lower statistics of only one in twenty girls have the privilege of attending school beyond grade school. But even if girls have the privilege of obtaining an education they go through a lot as many lives are threatened as they try to go to school, an example being that acid is sometimes thrown at them. And because it is a law that females are not allowed to attend school with boys it makes it even more difficult to find a school that is within distance and price for them to attend (Elite 8) But there are many more countries that don’t allow women to attend school such as Pakistan. In recent news Pakistan’s lack of education for females made headlines when fifteen year old Malala Yousafzai was shot by the Taliban as she made an attempt to get an education. This lead to the Malala Fund, which encourages education for females around the world but especially in Pakistan. More than half of the females in Pakistan do not have an education making them the country with the lowest education rate for women (Elite 7).

Getting an education is not the only trouble women experience in Middle Eastern countries, they have extreme difficulties that women in first world countries do not have to face. One being the tactic of using rape as a as a weapon of war in places such as Afghanistan, Sudan, Iraq,Nepal, Chechnya, andColombia (bbc 4), this war tactic came about in the 1990’s. According to bbc (bbc 7) “Rape is often used in ethnic conflicts as a way for attackers to perpetuate their social control and redraw ethnic boundaries.” Because women are viewed as the caretakers for their communities,if a group wants control over a community they will do so by impregnating the women as it will be destroying the community within (bbc 9). In Bosnia rape was used as a mehod of “Ethnic Clensing” (bbc 11). Women were raped so they would birth a serbain child (bbc 12). In 1971 it was calculated that around 200,000 women were raped during the war for independence in Bangladesh (global 2). The same stradegy was used by pakistani troops during the battle of Blangladesh they would rape the women as an effort for the women to birth Punjabi kids (global 5).

Women around the world continue to go hrough many issues and males do not have to such as female genital mutilation also sometimes referred to as FGM. This procedure is done in places like Africa, the Middle East and Asia, but the reasoning behind it varies from location, but many regions perform it for cultural beliefs, the belief that it increases the want for men to marry the girls, or religious reasoning (World 14). But FGM is done in Over thirty countries and over two hundred million females that are currently living have suffered through this mutilation of the body. FGM is the procedure in which a females genitalia is removed or injured for no medical reasons (World 1). Internationally FGM has been identified as a violation of human rights agains females. It further establishes the inequality between males and females, and further establishes intense discrimination against females A majority of the time this procedure is performed on minors meaning its harming children and violating the law. It is a procedure that degree women, it is inhuman and cruel that continues into these females adulthood and haunts them (World 3). But since light has been brought lt to the procedure methods to prevent it have been places such as UNFPA and UNICEF creating the Joint Programme on Female Genital Mutilation/Cutting in 2007 as a method of abolishing this procedure (World 17)

Woman around the world have to go through unbelievable hardships that they otherwise would not of gone through if they were males. They have been fighting for equal rights since the early 1800’s and are still fight for equality. Being a woman in society never has been easy but as we continue to made strides we continue to pave the way for future generations, the same way our ancestors did for us, they are the reason as females we have the ability to vote, and have a say in what women get to do with their own bodies, although men still have large control over women.  

You can receive your plagiarism free paper on any topic in 3 hours!

*minimum deadline

Cite this Essay

To export a reference to this article please select a referencing style below

Copy to Clipboard
Women’s Suffrage: Several Waves of Feminism That Changed the Society. (2023, March 14). WritingBros. Retrieved April 1, 2023, from https://writingbros.com/essay-examples/womens-suffrage-several-waves-of-feminism-that-changed-the-society/
“Women’s Suffrage: Several Waves of Feminism That Changed the Society.” WritingBros, 14 Mar. 2023, writingbros.com/essay-examples/womens-suffrage-several-waves-of-feminism-that-changed-the-society/
Women’s Suffrage: Several Waves of Feminism That Changed the Society. [online]. Available at: <https://writingbros.com/essay-examples/womens-suffrage-several-waves-of-feminism-that-changed-the-society/> [Accessed 1 Apr. 2023].
Women’s Suffrage: Several Waves of Feminism That Changed the Society [Internet]. WritingBros. 2023 Mar 14 [cited 2023 Apr 1]. Available from: https://writingbros.com/essay-examples/womens-suffrage-several-waves-of-feminism-that-changed-the-society/
Copy to Clipboard

Need writing help?

You can always rely on us no matter what type of paper you need

Order My Paper

*No hidden charges