Journal Entry #1
September 5 , 2013
In No Turning Back the History of Feminism and the Future of Women by Estelle
Freedman, the author dives in to the origin of feminism. The two historical transitions
that have propelled feminist politics are the rise of capitalism disrupted older, reciprocal
relations within families in way that initially enhanced men’s economic opportunities and
defined women as their dependents, and secondly, the new political theories of individual
rights and representative government that developed alongside capitalism extended
privileges to men only. This caused pandemonium amongst the early feminists and
galvanized them to strongly fight for their beliefs. After Freedman discusses the history,
she then illustrates the history of the actual term. The term combines the French word for
woman, “femme,” and “isme,” which refers to a social movement or political ideology.
The term was always controversial because of its association with radicalism.
Consequently, many socialists who support their views rejected the label “feminist.” The
author then gives a definition for feminism detailing how it is a belief that women and
men are of equal worth. Feminism must recognize the integral relationship to other forms
of social hierarchy. Women of different color, sexuality, and backgrounds are all different
kinds of beings involved in this movement. The social movement must find a way to
cater to all social levels and kinds of women. Additionally, no matter how intricate its
politics are, feminism always seems to threaten many people because it provides a
powerful critique of the past. This fear that feminists will change what is considered as normality to the world will result in antifeminist politics. This balance must be
discovered to transgress passed the social norms that irritate feminists.
In “Why Feminism Isn’t for Everybody” by Becky Ellis, she explains the
audience that the feminists should direct their claims to. She states that Feminism is a
diverse, heterogeneous movement in terms of membership, ideology, tactics, and strategy.
She then states that although this question may be cloudy, it is about how feminists go
about expressing their beliefs. She wants young feminists to be a force in society because
it is historically proven that that is the way the feminist improvement grew. She becomes
to take an aggressive stance and states that women are basically losing ground within the
recent years. She says that wha