A History of U.S. Feminisms

A History of U.S. Feminisms

Language: English

Pages: 216

ISBN: 1580055885

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub

Thoroughly updated and expanded, the second edition of A History of U.S. Feminisms is an introductory text that will be used as supplementary material for first-year women’s studies students or as a brush-up text for more advanced students. Covering the first, second, and third waves of feminism, A History of U.S. Feminisms will provide historical context of all the major events and figures from the late nineteenth century through today.

The chapters cover: first-wave feminism, a period of feminist activity during the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries which focused primarily on gaining women's suffrage; second-wave feminism, which started in the ’60s and lasted through the ’80s and emphasized the connection between the personal and the political; and third-wave feminism, which started in the early ’90s and is best exemplified by its focus on diversity and intersectionality, queer theory, and sex-positivity.

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exposed to nonstereotypical representations of gender. Some feminists worked within their families so that husbands took on domestic responsibilities traditionally deemed “feminine,” such as washing dishes, cooking, cleaning, and taking care of children. Others wrote children’s books that challenged gender stereotypes, for instance by depicting a little boy who wants a doll. Contemporary feminists continue the work of questioning stereotypical gender roles and challenging the way children are

Wollstonecraft and the American transcendentalist Margaret Fuller, whose Woman in the Nineteenth Century (1844) also advocated women’s access to education and jobs, used their writing to convince the public of the constrained social roles available to women. Other women, however, took a different approach, working to reform social institutions through organized activist work. As a result of the Second Great Awakening in the early nineteenth century, white, middle-class women began to gain more

Equity Act meant that federal money could be spent to buy materials and implement programs that challenged sexism. One beneficiary of this legislation was the new field of women’s studies, an interdisciplinary academic endeavor aimed at examining gender inequality in social, historical, and cultural terms. The formation of the National Women’s Studies Association in 1977 offered a professional organization to those involved in such academic pursuits. Crucial to the popularization of feminism in

men and women using the term ‘nigga.’” In addition to reclaiming the term “girl” and embracing femininity, girlie feminists display their sexuality openly, almost as a way to counter the stereotype of feminists as asexual and frigid. Third wave feminism is cast as oppositional to the second wave at least in part because of girlie feminists’ deliberate decision to deploy the trappings of femininity in a conscious, even parodic way. For many second wavers, such uses of femininity are nothing more

of Feminism and Barbara Findlen’s Listen Up: Voices from the Next Feminist Generation, presented the “new subjectivity” Sandoval called for, describing feminism through multiple voices, and not just through the voices of “white economically privileged heterosexual women.” The authors in these collections spoke from many vantage points and perspectives and, as Findlen explained in her introduction, “call themselves, among other things, articulate, white, middle-class college kid; . . . single

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