From the Post-Civil War Period Through the 1920s: Freedom for American Women (Research Paper Sample)
Format: Times New Roman, 12 point font, regular margins, double-spaced, with page numbers. The paper should be between 3-5 pages in length (no shorter, but also not much longer, unless absolutely necessary).
Essay Question: From the post-Civil War period through the 1920s, how did the meaning and experience of freedom change for American women?
Note: Please be aware that the question has specific beginning and end points, some of which are specific dates. These temporal ranges are not arbitrary, the paper must span the entire temporal scope and be in chronological order.
The paper must only use the sources included with the order and contain no other online sources.
• Grammatically sound without errors of syntax or spelling
• Factually correct
• Properly cited in MLA style, with page numbers in parentheses
• Organized into a logical sequence of paragraphs linked by transitions and topic sentences, all in the service of a central argument stated clearly in the introduction and recapitulated in the conclusion.
• Most importantly, your paper must have a thesis / argument / claim, which you make in your introduction.
How the Meaning and Experience of Freedom Changed For American Women
In the early republic of the United States, state laws rather than federal law governed the rights of women. Women did not have the right to vote or lead in any political positions of the state. American women of the past experienced oppression from both the state and the men around them: They were barred from entering professions and occupations of their choice, the right to choose their own mates, give birth to the number of children they wanted, and the right to voluntary motherhood. These women suffered from a lack of knowledge about their reproductive systems and ignorance of the effects of such discrimination by their men counterparts. However, America experienced drastic changes from the post-civil war period through the 1920s when the American women joined hands to protest against the gender discrimination and advocate for equality in all spheres of life. They advocated for equal treatment through coalitions such as the American Women's Suffrage movement and the National Women's Party. This paper will discuss how the meaning and experience of freedom changed for the American women from the period of post-civil war through the 1920s.
Before the enfranchisement of the American women in the United States, different groups argued for and against the Women's suffrage. Those who argued for Women's suffrage argued their right to political equality using logic, religion, and justice's points of view. They argued that women's enfranchisement would be the first step to secure the strength, health, and prosperity of the United States (Santon, Susan, Matilda & Ida 349). On the other hand, those against the women's suffrage argued that if women had the freedom to vote, they would neglect their homes and dessert their families while spending all the time at the polls. Another argument is that if women were given the right to vote, they would vote against their husbands resulting in family quarrels and divorce (Howe 4).
One of the greatest experiences of freedom was the right to vote by the American women. The American Women Suffrage in the United States fought for equal democracy where women could be given freedom to take part in political elections by voting. Carrie Chapman Catt, who served as the president of the American Women's Suffrage Association, addressed the congress in 1917 urging them to allow women to take part in the presidential election process in the nineteenth amendment. Later in the same year, the president of the American Society of International Law, Elihu Root said that the world could not be half-democratic and half-autocratic; a situation where some states allowed women to share in the election of the president while some states denied the women to do so. In 1918, the Congress approved the nineteenth amendment (Gallagher 15), which became part of the constitution in 1920. The fundamental principles of the government of the United States compelled the enfranchisement of its own women (Catt, 1917).
Secondly, the American women achieved equality in all things of life. After the year 1921, the National women's Party started a campaign to eliminate the discriminations against women in the laws of the United States (Hill & Kelly 419). Equality for...
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