Women’s Rights Movements in the USA from 1920 until now
The history of the USA counts numerous examples of the women’s rights evolution. It is a fact that female rights always had an emerging nature. It is important to evaluate its essence in order to see transformation of this phenomenon through time. In general, it is possible to say that women’s rights movements have a complex nature, which supports an idea that it is hard to fight for a natural female right to be treated in a natural way in the men’s world. However, the USA is one of the countries, which has established a democratic approach towards the regulation of every sector. Women’s rights are not an exception. It is possible to claim that there have been many changes and transformations, which led to the establishment of contemporary rights and standards of collaboration of women in the men’s world. It is hard to deny the fact that a man is an original head of the family. It means that he is a primary source of the family’s welfare. The USA is a country, which holds numerous aspects of the women’s performance, which require taking special attention in order to have a positive influence on the social development. The following research indicates the main peculiarities of the female rights’ movement in the frame of a timeline, which reflects an emerging nature of events circling around the selected topic.
Tendencies of the Beginning of the 20th Century
In case of evaluation of women’s rights starting from the 1920s, it is necessary to start taking into account events from 1921. This year is the first time, when there was the right of having a planned family discussed. Margaret Sanger and an original founder of the American Birth Control League transformed the named institution into the Planned Parenthood Federation (Wainwright, 2011). It has become a significant step towards the regulation of a woman’s role in a social segment, which supported initiatives of providing every woman with a family. The whole aspect of the selected movement became a focus on those elements of the woman’s life, which supported her right to have a happy marriage. It is important to mention that creation of this federation became one of the most important moments in the transformational tendencies circling around women’s rights, in general. It became a defining step in the establishment of the women’s rights platform, which penetrates a social activity in the contemporary world.
The next important event, which continued the evolution of the women’s role in the society, became an organization of the National Council of Negro Women in 1935 by Mary McLeod Bethune (Payne & Wermeling, 2009). She is the one who decided to take an appropriate action towards the protection of the most sensitive segment of the society, i.e. Afro-American women. It is a loud declaration of women’s rights, which should become a center of the social development in order to proclaim welfare and sustainability. The main aim of the organization became a protection of every African-American woman regarding discrimination within a workplace, gender inequality, and sexism. These elements became the leading targets of the performance of the National Council. It is obvious that females needed this support as long as there were tendencies of putting women into stress, conflicts, and difficult situations. They were contrary to their right to enjoy a peaceful existence within a social sphere.
Discrimination and Women’s Rights in the Middle of the 20th Century
In 1955, another significant event took place in order to enhance the woman’s performance in the men’s world. The United States obtained the first lesbian organization, which supported the right of a female to be free in her sexual orientation. This organization had a name the Daughters of Bilitis (DOB). It is a political organization, which created numerous changes in acceptance of every woman’s right to choose with whom to share her life. Freedom in sexual orientation became one of the main tendencies, which supported an overall establishment of an appropriate set of standards accepted throughout all levels of social development.
In 1960, the Food and Drug Administration made a breakthrough in the expansion of women’s rights in the society. The named institution accepted birth control peals and supported its distribution within drug stores. It became an event, which defined a female right to choose her way of controlling birth with the help of contraceptives. It is the first step towards equality of sexes. The Food and Drug Administration, however, is not an only institution, which surrounded its performance around the problem of birth control. It was originally a primary initiative of a man.
One of the most important steps in the appropriate support of female rights through the political segment took place in 1961. John Kennedy, the current president of that period, established the Commission on the Status of Women. In addition to this point, Kennedy put Eleanor Roosevelt as a chairperson. It became the first sign of letting women in the political segment of the society. The Commission established a report including issues of workplace discrimination, racial and gender inequalities, and sexual orientation. It became a first phenomenon proving that the USA is an appropriate society for the development of a woman as a social part. It became clear that the world of a female is a complex system, which needs man’s approval in order to continue its welfare and existence, in general. Kennedy became a president who supported the initiative of protecting women’s rights and supporting their integration in a decision-making process of the political sector. Finally, it became obvious that the USA will continue to establish appropriate conditions for the development of every woman.
In 1963, the society faced both political and cultural transformations of female perception (Krovel, 2011). For example, there was a breakthrough in the sector of literature. Betty Friedan became the first writer who reflected the tendency of the women’s rights evolution in her book. It is essential to mention the way she mentioned a female role in the society through the mirror of her book. The book called The Feminine Mystique circles around dissatisfaction with perception of women within the middle-class’ housewives. The author successfully discussed the narrow role obtained by these women from the social perspective. The book managed to become a best-seller and introduced a new vision on the problems of females faced in the world ruled by men. This year also has a specific characteristic feature aimed to turn the attention of the whole society to the problem of supporting women’s rights and protecting them from violence both intentional and unintentional. There was an important change in the political segment too. In summer, the Congress passed an act, which made it an obligation to pay women the same compensation. It became illegal to put unequal wages for men and women. The same job started to have the same level of wages for both men and women. This act titled as the Equal Pay Act became another support of the female rights movement.
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The following years have a high penetration of events continuing the chain of tendencies imposed in the social segment, which changed the woman’s role. In general, it is possible to call the following five years as a strengthening point of the previous initiatives taken by the society in order to enhance the perception of females. For example, the Supreme Court denied law, which prohibited married couples to use contraceptives. In addition, the Civil Rights Act extended its legal side all over the concept of racial and gender equality. It became the support of previous steps taken towards integration of women into the society without borders. In general, it is possible to mention that the community started to work towards protecting every woman instead of limiting her. In 1966, Betty Friedan continued her social performance in another segment (Bandler, 1997). She became a founder of the National Organization of Women, which supported initiatives of feminists. It is the first time, when feministic movements started to emerge and began to worry millions of men. This period aroused many arguments and doubts within a social segment, which stated circulating in the perspective of limiting women’s rights.
In 1972, there was another transformation in the political segment, which enhanced the notion of making men and women equal in the social responsibilities (Bandler, 1997). This transformation took place in the political sphere. The Congress passed the Equal Rights Amendment, which declared that equality of rights of men and women should not be denied by any governmental institution or law. Neither the government nor any state could become a limiting organ of the women’s rights. In addition, this year became the first one when there were numerous discussions circulating regarding the discrimination within schools. Education became one of the main targets of female discrimination and oppression. It became illegal to penetrate the learning process with arguments or any other conflicts putting students at stress regarding gender, racial or any other form of discrimination.
The period from the 1980s until now is a period, which has a specific nature of supporting women’s rights based on the achieved results. For example, there were many cases in the Supreme Court, which prohibited a sexual harassment in the workplace (Bridgeman, 2011). In general, there were many issues, which supported the point of ethical behavior of both genders within a society. It is possible to claim that there was a tendency of penetrating social performance with confidence in the female place and role in the overall perception.
Current Trends in the Development of Women’s Rights Movements
In 1994, the USA accepted an act against violence, which turned attention to the importance of providing women with appropriate support in order to protect every woman from violence within her home and workplace at the same time (Bandler, 1997). The Supreme Court had numerous cases throughout the following ten years, which reflected the importance of working in the same direction in order to provide every female with appropriate support. Domestic violence became a separate target of the government’s performance, which could enhance the equality of sexes. In addition, there was a special attention to the performance of women serving in combat roles. From 2006 up to 2013, the government successfully had implemented numerous initiatives, which transformed the perception of the army and women joining it (Bridgeman, 2011). Equality of the sexes and women’s rights continue to be the target objectives of social development, which aim to bring it to the appropriate level for the sake of future generation’s sustainable performance. Finally, the current situation in the social segment proves that the performance of social organizations along with the governmental support are appropriate enough for the establishment of healthy norms and principles of building a friendly environment for a female development and overall welfare. The society became a segment, which supports women instead of creating limits. Freedom was a target, which should be attained in the shortest terms. President Obama and his administration continue to work in this sector and bring the society to the understanding that every woman needs care and support. It should be done in order to promote the further development of the community. In general, it is possible to see the effect of every action taken in previous years by other leaders, which supports the following point. It is necessary not to neglect the woman’s role and her place in the society in order to promote an overall sustainable development of the generation.
In conclusion, it is important to mention that the community will always be performing within the selected framework. However, it is impossible to penetrate its performance with limiting initiatives regarding female rights and roles. The women’s rights movement has a long history. The current situation in the world of feminism proves that there have been many achievements, which supported the tendency of approving women’s place in the world of men. However, it is possible to claim that the contemporary level of social development allows both men and women to exist without tension and stress. It is possible to continue transformation of the society and enhance its overall evolution through the lens of supporting rights of both parties formulating an overall welfare of future generations. The USA is an appropriate example of the country, which proves that females deserve to be treated with respect without creating limits for them. Regardless of the social class, a woman should have the same opportunities for the development and successful performance as every man. The society continues to go through evolutional stages. It is necessary to forget old-fashioned principles, which destroy psychological sustainability of every woman.
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Bridgeman, J. (2011). Wise women in community: Building on everyday radical feminism for social change. Interface: A Journal for and about Social Movements, 3 (2). Retrieved from http://www.interfacejournal.net/wordpress/wp-content/uploads/2011/12/Interface-3-2-Full-PDF.pdf
Bandler, M. J. (1997). The roads to be taken: Contemporary women’s voices. U.S. Society & Values, 2 (2). Retrieved from http://shenyang.usembassy-china.org.cn/uploads/images/KYFFp59L1dwF5zj84P2KNg/women-role.pdf
Krovel, R. (2011). Alternative journalism and the relationship between guerrillas and indigenous peoples in Latin America. Interface: A Journal for and about Social Movements, 3 (2). Retrieved from http://www.interfacejournal.net/wordpress/wp-content/uploads/2011/12/Interface-3-2-Full-PDF.pdf
Payne, D., & Wermeling, L. (2009). Domestic violence and the female victim: The real reason women stay! Journal of Multicultural, Gender and Minority Studies, 3 (1). Retrieved from http://www.scientificjournals.org/journals2009/articles/1420.pdf
Wainwright, H. (2011). Reclaim the state: Experiments in popular democracy. Interface: A Journal for and about Social Movements, 3 (2). Retrieved from http://www.interfacejournal.net/wordpress/wp-content/uploads/2011/12/Interface-3-2-Full-PDF.pdf