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What Is the Women's Rights Movement?
Updated: 9/17/2020
What Is the Women's Rights Movement?
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  • Elizabeth Stanton was introduced to Susan B. Anthony in 1851. The two become the leading figures in the women's rights movement. Anthony goes on to give hundreds of speeches that Stanton writes while at home taking care of her children. They spoke for women's rights, as well as for the abolition of slavery.
  • In 1909, Pauline Newman helped organize the largest strike of American woman to date. She fought for fair working conditions for women and formed the International Ladies Garment Workers Union.
  • In 1917, Alice Paul organized volunteers to picket in front of the white house. She continued to campaign through the start of WWI and was arrested and sentenced to seven months in jail. While Paul was still in jail, suffrage passed in New York.
  • Surprisingly, Burns voted yes to the amendment. He had kept a letter in his pocket from his mother, urging him to support suffrage. The 19th amendment became a law on August 26th, 1920.
  • President Wilson announced his support for the suffrage amendment in 1918. The Tennessee House of Representatives was stuck in a tie, with the tie breaker being Harry T. Burn, who wore a red rose indicating he was anti-suffrage.
  • Many women worked during WWII, but things went back to normal afterwards and women grew frustrated being housewives. Betty Friedan, a mother and writer, formed the National Organization for Woman which launched the second wave of the women's rights movement. This group, however, excluded lesbians and was led mainly by white, middle class women.
  • At the same time of the second wave of the women's rights movement, black feminists also began to rise after feeling that their issues had been ignored. In 1972 Shirley Chisholm was the first black woman elected to congress and the first African American woman to run for president.
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