The term
feminism can be used to define a cultural or political crusade aimed in instituting
equality legally and in rights for women. Feminism involves theoretical concerns
and sociological concepts that focuses on issues between genders, as well as promoting
gender equality. Along with campaigning interest and rights for women. Although
the use of “feminist” and “feminism” did not gain status well-known terms until
the 1970s. The “personal is political” was frequently heard feminist rally cry
during the 60s and 70s although its exact origin is widely debated. Even now it
is not attributed to any one person, but instead thought of as part of the
movement.

            The first wave of feminism took
place during the late nineteenth century and early twentieth century. It
emerged out of the atmosphere surrounding the urban industrialism and the
liberal socialist politics that came from the era. The objective of this wave
was to create new opportunities for women such as voting and property, with an emphasis
on suffrage. Seneca Falls Convention during July 19, 1848 and July 20, 1848 was
where the first wave officially began. This convention was where three hundred
women and men rallied together for the equality of women. “All men AND WOMEN
are created equal.” (MacLean 4)

            The waves of feminism has a tendency
to see flashes of empowerment each time there are sparks of outrage that boil
over. Such as the times it showed during the civil rights movement and the
Vietnam War. Although the second wave of feminism had difficulty finding its
voice amongst so many other widespread social movements. It was easily disregarded
and viewed as much less pressing than others, such as the efforts to end the
Vietnam War and the Black Power movement. However this did not discourage the
movement it merely made them continue in their quest for equality. “Younger
women developed an emerging “mass movement: women’s liberation” (MacLean 16)

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            The Second Wave of feminism began in
the 1960s and continued well in to the 90s. The second wave reared its head
during the anti-war and civil rights movement. As there was mounting awareness
all over the world from minorities everywhere. One of the main protests during
this wave was against the Miss America pageant in Atlantic City in 1968 and
1969. Feminist were against the ideal of reducing women as nothing more than
objects of beauty. Therefore the staged protest mocking said pageant even
creating their own. Where they crowned a live sheep and “tossed female symbols
of oppression – curlers, bras, and makeup- into a ‘freedom trash can.” (Dubois
606)

            Liberal feminist such as NOW the
National Organization for Women focused on the individual right of each women,
but held the belief that each individual held the right to fight for their own
rights, rather than as a collective group.  They fight for equality not just of women but
for all. They argue that society has a tendency to hold false beliefs of women.
These false beliefs being that women are inherently less intellectual and physically
incapable of completing the same tasks as men. Which is why society pays women
less in the same company, while working the same position, and for doing the
same exact job? The Liberal feminist use subtle yet effective efforts in
bringing about change as they fight for bills to be passed and laws to be made
in their endeavor for equal rights for women, “through the system.” (MacLean
30)

            Radical feminist do believe in and
want the same things as a Liberal feminist, however the way that they go about
getting their message across is vastly different. As they have a tendency to
take things much farther. Radical feminism believes that society is fundamentally
run by patriarchal rules. “Our society, like all other historical
civilizations, is a patriarchy.” (Dubois 620) One that has been structurally built
on the oppression of women. They believe that the only way to truly break out
of the mold of women’s oppression is to completely destroy the oppressing patriarchal
system and completely rebuild it from the ground up. Some radical females
believe that it would be better for women to rule the world in the way that
there would be more women as CEOs, leaders, upper management or heads of
states. They believe that women would do a much better job than men have been.

Of course not all radical feminist are against men so much as they are
against patriarchy. Although there is of course a small percentage of women who
are against all men. Unfortunately these are the ones who gain attention in all
types of media. This is what causes many people to incorrectly assume that all
feminist hold strong hatred to men. It is also the reason why so many hesitate
to label themselves as feminist at all. 

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