Marriages were usually based on economic partnership and cultural believes. Husbands ruled over their wives and made all of the family decisions. It was almost impossible for women to be involved in public matters. In fact, women had no right at all to participate in activities that weren’t permitted by the husbands and if they were to do so the men were allowed by the law to punish their wives for disobedience. It felt almost like they were imprisoned in the domestic environment by their Masters who were men.
The main concept of this role of women was that their purpose was to educate their sons properly and to make sure that when they grew up, they would be functional and hopefully upstanding members of society. This was a major development, as it made sure women knew their place in the world; they were to serve the men of the world, and were not to get directly involved in any of a “man’s decisions.” This thought was also shared by Benjamin Rush, who stated that women should be educated just enough so that they could teach their sons about the principles of liberty and government (DOC B). While this did proved women with some educational opportunities, said opportunities were very limited, and their small amount of education could never land them a good job or allow them to be “free”, as Margaret Fuller wrote in “Woman in the Nineteenth Century” (DOC E). The Cult of Domesticity was probably the most dominant and most binding “institution” that developed in this era. It was based around four principal ideas: piety, purity, domesticity, and submissiveness.
Feminists believe that the family is patriarchal, dominated by men, and that it exploits and oppresses women. The family supports and reproduces inequalities between men and women. Women are oppressed because their socialised to be dependent on men and remain in second place. They reject the new rights view of the separate roles, and also reject the ‘march of progress’ view in that society has not changed and it is still unequal. Feminists believe that marriage remains patriarchal and that men benefit from wives.
Women are able to do many things that they weren't allowed to before. They do not belong to anyone nor have to depend on a man. Kate Chopin and Charlotte Perkins Gilman both gave women ideas on how they should be treated. They both believed that women should be doing a lot more than they are expected to. The authors wrote that women should have equal rights as men, should be able to vote, and they shouldn't be tied down to their husbands.
They also believed that they were superior to women and that women should remain obedient and oppressed, and not question their husbands or fathers. The conversations that the females in the play have when they are not in the presence of men seem to prove that they have accepted society’s expectations of them, and that when they are in the company of men, they behave the way men believe to be natural. It is for this reason that when Desdemona married Othello without her father, Brabantio’s consent, he states that her actions were “against all rules of nature” (I, iii, 101). Many feminist critics view Desdemona as submissive and oppressed. Desdemona, herself, gives evidence to this claim when she states that she is “obedient” (III, iii, 89) to Othello no matter what.
“Initially, women energized by Friedan’s book joined with government leaders and union representatives who had been lobbying the federal government for equal pay and for protection against employment discrimination.” They had established that polite requests were not working and they would need their own group, basically an equal to the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People but for women. In June of 1966 the NOW was born, (History.com). In 1966, Betty Friedan wrote the NOW statement, “We, men and women who hereby constitute ourselves as the National Organization for Women, believe that the time has come for a new movement toward true equality for all women in America, and toward a fully equal partnership of the sexes, as part of world-wide revolution of human rights now taking place within and beyond our national borders. The purpose of NOW is to take action to bring women into full participation in the mainstream of American society now, exercising all the privileges and responsibilities thereof in truly equal partnership with men…” (NOW.org). Since 1966, NOW has been working to make sure that the partnership with men and women is
Culture tends to divide sexes, based on our gender we automatically go into a category. The pattern of dividing gender and limit men and women to a certain way of living could be constructing some people into lifestyles they don't really enjoy. Women are expected to have children and raise a family and take care of her husband. What's wrong with a women not wanting to have children and spend her life traveling. There really isn't anything wrong with that but society frowns upon it.
Women were deemed incapable to work and function in public because these traits were thought to make women less capable to do work that the men did. Women were thought of as weaker and unable to do things that men did, but still thought to be morally superior to men. Mid-nineteenth century religious views had reinforced this thought to be true. It was because of this that people had thought that women were best suited for the domestic sphere because of their moral superiority. Women were also expected to teach the next generation the necessary moral virtues to ensure the survival of the
“Feminists can produce a positive stereotype, considering that women work just as hard as a man, inside and outside of the home. It’s unfair that women who participate in the feminist movement are accused of being butch or trying to live in a “man’s world”. They are not trying to live in a man’s world; they just want to co-exist be equals, not dominant, like men feel they need to.” Sanbonmatsu, K.
Hanna Rosin’s article states that she thinks that women are not completely controlled by men in their job choices, but that women are making different choices based on their personal prefrences and economic situations. The counter argument is that men are dominating over women and taking all the jobs. Rosin gives an example from her own experience of how women themselves are in control of their own decisions in the workplace. she stated that shortly after giving birth, that she wanted to go back to work, but that she also wanted to stay home and raise a child. She didnt see staying home with her child as her “duty”, and she didn’t feel pressure from her husband or boss to do one or the other, but that It was her own subconscious, tricking her into beliving that it was more her duty to stay home with their baby than her husbands.