POL 344 Lecture Notes - Lecture 3: Global Spread Of H5N1, Seneca Falls Convention, John Stuart Mill

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Lecture 3
1. Feminism
a. Defined by Fraser as 'theory of & struggle for equality for women' (aka gender
equality)
b. Women's rights need to become equivalent to human rights, because originally
human rights were the rights of man
c. Working to redefine human rights as belonging to everyone, not just men
d. In social science, trying to think of it empirically not normatively, meaning there
cannot be opinion involved
e. Must use tools of social science to explain things
2. Why Feminism is important
a. Fraser felt it important that there be a written history of feminist tradition & women
b. Important for other women to know history that held their beliefs
c. Monks were previously the main scholars, able to write & read
d. Therefore, pre 1400s much of the writing was done by men
e. Once written down, each woman didn't have to reinvent the wheel with the ideas of
women's rights, they could build off of each other
3. History of feminist thought & organizing
a. Early writing (1400s-1700s)
i. Printing press inventionthings being shared widely
ii. In 1400s, was very radical to think women be equal
iii. Having feminist writings was important because otherwise these women
wouldn't even think it possible, felt they were unsupported opinions
iv. Important that women were writing because often it was only men who did
political things, public sphere
v. Women were very isolated because they were so busy in private sphere, &
books opened them up to more ideas & people
vi. Focus was on raising awareness, consciousness that there was life outside their
private sphere, push for literacy & education, condemn violence against women
vii. Family rights pushed for because once a woman got married, all her property &
money belonged to her husband, husband got custody if they split up, woman
only had husband's nationality, couldn't testify in court, couldn't sign contracts,
couldn't own or inherit property or bequeath things
viii. Pushed idea that literacy would help improve women as mothers & wives
ix. Little organization, more about getting history recorded & writing, some
organization to push for greater women education
x. Successful in establishing framework, pushing for education
b. Feminist writing & organizing in 1800s
i. Focus on education, anti-slavery, poverty
ii. Organized push for education, abolitionist meetings, public sphere action taken
iii. Ideas from earlier began to be organized, gatherings of people, talking & acting
beyond just writing & reading
iv. Seneca Falls Convention one of first where women got together to organize for
women's rights in public instead of just in private
v. By advocating on behalf of others, they gained the ability to advocate for
themselves
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