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How do feminists explain inequality between the sexes and how do they seek to remedy it?

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Introduction

How do feminists explain inequality between the sexes and how do they seek to remedy it? Feminism is the only ideology that believes that gender is a form of discrimination, if not the strongest of social boundaries compared to race, status, and nationality. For this reason feminists focus on gender inequality and the specific roles that men and woman lead in every day life as a result of gender discrimination. Feminism can be traced back to 1405 in the book by Christine de Pisan's "Book of the City of Ladies". This book contained the basic skeleton of thought that is present in modern day feminism, as it celebrates and highlights women and their contribution through out history, similar to cultural feminism. This clearly shows that from long ago there has always been a demand for equal rights between the sexes. In the last century many schools of feminist thought have emerged as a result of this question of equality and many different remedies have also come as result. Today feminism is an ideology that has a very broad horizon, which is only normal for an area as vast and amorphous as gender. ...read more.

Middle

Patriarchy literally means rule by the father, but feminists use this term to describe men's general dominance in society. Radical feminists believe that patriarchy is how men maintain the position over women in society. When looking at patriarchy radical feminists like to focus on everyday relationships between men and women. For example when a woman irons her husband's clothes, this can show how men for their own benefit use women and also how woman are confined to the house. It also shows that patriarchy starts from the home, and is built in the family structure "rule by the father". Women are socialised into believing that they are inferior to men, they are socialised to be weak, and as Simone de Beauvoir said "Woman are not born they are made". Thus the only way to get rid of patriarchy is summarised in the statement "The personal is the political", meaning woman should liberate themselves in their personal lives as well. Gaining the vote didn't bring equality, because patriarchy starts from the family (the heart of society), patriarchy is maintained through socialisation, and patriarchy in turn shapes society. ...read more.

Conclusion

The statement shows that new feminism is trying to make women more comfortable with being feminists. This is ideal for women who do not want the their public life to mix with their private life. New feminism also looks at issues like abortion, pornography, which are controversial and affect woman greatly. This shows that it is not the end of the line for feminism because women constantly face new problems in a modern growing society, and need organisations that will help them. The feminist movement has changed greatly through out the past century, and no doubt a great deal has been achieved. Feminism by having these different stages has shown the world that it is almost evolutionary, and will be around for a longer time. Organisations like NOW are one of the biggest in America, and lobby a vast range of issues concerning women. Women today are still benefiting from the work of the past feminists, in areas of education, work, and politics. Overall the feminist movement has been a success, a remedy for true equality and liberation may not of been found yet. But instead many have been put forward, which have caused women to think further and also think for the future of "personkind" as well. Waheeda Rahman ...read more.

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