Beyond moral issues,
why do the women behind the
temperance movement deserve to be treated with
Women have high status in matriarchal native American society. From
gathering they invent agriculture, dominate farming while men hunt.
Religion is animism, worship of nature, adding to women’s stature as
bearer of children.
introduction of the horse by Europeans reverses by resulting in more
sophisticated hunting. Women’s status deteriorates. European men
see women as second class citizens. Children from common law
marriages between white men and native women are rejected by both
sides, later abandoned by white men. European interest in fur trade
involves women in trapping and fur finishing. Enormous loss of
Native American life from disease from Europeans, sometimes
here die early from
multiple pregnancies. Farm women have endless chores. Rights of
women: women can inherit but husbands own everything. Unmarried
women are seen as whores. The frontier is more liberal for women.
Politically, women have no rights. Most occupations closed to
them. Women are subordinate to men. They are labeled as unclean
during their menstrual cycle, in contrast to tribal society. Women
are either placed on a pedestal or seen as a whore, unrealistic
extremes. Unequal penalties for extra-marital affairs. There are
classes for white women in rural South. Lower class women must wear
heavy garments from head to toe, adding to distress of heavy labor
on the farm. Mid-upper class women wear clothes to create men’s
ideal of the hour-glass figure, creating disfigurement.
Women in the
Revolutionary War period.
Women have important and
dynamic roles. The Stamp Act boycott. War roles include logistic
support, spying, smuggling under clothes. Still there is the full
farm burden. Women adequately manage the farm labor as well as the
business side. Abigail Adams is an icon of frustration of able women
Revolutionary War. . Late
1700s into 1800 family and economic changes. Decline in women’s
status. Women remain on the farm unpaid, while men earn in towns,
cities. Incentive for women’s literacy is increased so they can
nurture children in values of the republic.. In the 1800’s teaching
and secretary work open to women.
Women and the role of
great awakening. Religious revivals in the 17 & 1800s to get back
to the core of religion in individual lives. Has evangelical
quality, greater emotional content. Leadership by some women,
giving them access to power. Generally allowed by men who lead
traditional religious forms because they see women as inferior,
emotional and irrational compared to the rational natures of men.
Experiences of slave women. Slave marriages formed by
stepping over a broom, ended by stepping back. Family life exists
in this form, with the benefits of the extended family. The
surprising role of the Mammy on the plantation. The constant
tension and terror from plantation masters. Dangers and tension
century: Some occupations open to women
including elementary school teaching, later secondary school.
Status of education declines when women dominate. Clerical and
secretary work also decline in status as they become more open to
women. The Lowell Mills, a strange phenomenon in early industrial
America. Single women start at the mills at age 15 until the age
30, work long hours with low pay, living in sheltered conditions.
They may become spinsters after leaving since they are seen as
beyond prime at that age.
The start of the
women’s movement in Seneca Falls, NY, in 1848.
Susan B. Anthony gives
up marriage and children to devote herself to this cause. Role is
organizer of the movement. Her stern image in photos comes from
standard pose style of the time. Her nature is actually open and
warm. Elizabeth Cady Stanton is the thinker, the philosopher of the
movement. She is married, with 2 children, and with her husband’s
approval for her work in the movement. The key issue is the right
to vote. The ideals of the American Revolution should apply.
Inheritance, occupations, keeping your own name, legal, social
issues. Some issues such as abortion and infanticide are too
controversial to be public. The failure of the movement. Failure
of the movement. The 15th amendment after the Civil War
gives black males the right to vote but not women. A stunning defeat
Notable women. In Colonial times.
Ann Hutchinson promoted the Protestant ideal of 1-on-1 relationship with God, was expelled from community partly because being a woman is a negative factor.
Anne Bradstreet writes poetry, offsets stereotype of dry, rigid women.
Adams expresses frustration with lack of opportunity for outlet
of abilities. In the mid-19th century: The stock figure
of the invalid wife in literature. This is a way of avoiding
unwanted sex with her husband when expected to always submit. There
are also strong women portrayed in literature. There are the
breakthrough women. End of the Civil War: Ex-slave women
now are free to seek lost family member across the South, make a
life for themselves, managing work and family care. The image of
the Southern belle is fading as industrialization emerges
with its effect on women.
Abolitionist movement. The negative view of upper class women involved sees them as dilettantes, causing more harm than good, actually prolonging slavery. The positive view is that they keep the issue alive.
The Grimsby sisters associate the end of slavery with women’s rights.
Harriet Tubman and the underground railroad assisting escaped slaves.
Sojourner Truth believes that the slave cause and women’s rights are embedded in the same values.