She is the party

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Modern Day Fairy Tale

Despite the rhetoric surrounding all phases of the feminist, the political measures taken by the major players in the women’s movement were those which granted access to resources for white women everywhere, but still have a large obstacle to face in doing the same for all women regardless of nationality or race. As Cott states in her piece included in Wheeler’s anthology, activists such as Alice Paul, Lucy Burns, and other members of the National Woman’s Party "would take up the term Feminism and become the prime mover in giving it a political and organizational dimension once the ballot was gained."15 Perhaps early movements such as this, and the circulation of the term itself, were what created the greatest danger to the movement itself – the fear of the language surrounding women’s rights.

Feminist mother Elizabeth Cady Stanton perhaps said it best, in a lyceum lecture she performed in 1869, far before the modern day feminist movements which, not only asked for equal treatment for women, but universal equality for any human,

If we would train our sons more in what are called the feminine virtues and accomplishments, and our daughters more in the healthy outdoor exercise and the masculine virtues of self-control and self-dependence, they would be equally improved and happier for the imitation of what is best in each other.16

The movements of the past are crucial to the knowledge and power that can be gained by the movements of today. Without the suffragist dedication which came from the early years of Stanton, Wells and Anthony there is no guarantee that women would be in Congress and nearing a run for the Presidential seat. Had Burns and Paul not given periods of their freedom to marching on the Capitol who could say that the freedom to live separately from a male partner could be possible for this generation and the generations to come.

This is not to say though, that the efforts in the years prior to the pro-choice and equal pay revolutions one sees today were not flawed in their execution and did not hold themselves separate from the unequal nature of social terms. There remains, under certain circumstances, cultural occurrences within the United States that make one question whether we are actually far from the racially divided feminism of the post-suffrage years. Ultimately, “the impact of abolitionism on the history of American feminism” is one that plays into every aspect of feminism.17 As Ellen Carol DuBois explains, the greatest myth of feminism that holds the necessity to be unbound is that “political equality [is] a ‘single issue’ that ignored all the other dimensions – sexual, economic – of women’s emancipation” when in reality it is an all encompassing aspect which, when put into play properly, embodies a reality which one should fight for.18

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