Indeed, it can be said that what has become of the women of the present day is shaped by forces other than the history. It is easy to discern that the history has been filled with stories of great men and had been mostly the chronicles of the undertakings of the males. Thus, it has focused only on them and their recounting. Also, it could be noticed that even the history, whether it be local or in relation to the international arena, is divided according to the male dominants of that time.
They become the stone that reminded everyone of that point in the history. Although, it is not to be taken in general but it is that which prevails. Therefore, with the foregoing statement, it could really be justified that there are forces that shaped women to what they have been now. These forces prove to be more important than the history, which is leaning towards the men, and has not relied solely on the importance of the history but rather, on the other driving forces. What the woman has achieved right now is to be credited to the Women’s Movement.
It is the beginning of cooperative efforts that fought against the oppression and the inequality they feel when it comes to gender relations. It was not a bloody revolution as depicted in wars, but a revolution of nobility but still with hardships encountered. The women’s movement started with an afternoon of tea on July 13, 1848. As Elizabeth Cady Stanton was invited with four friends for a cup of tea in New York, their conversations fell into the situation of women with regards to rights and freedom, which sparked the initiative to start a revolution that would end the gender oppression (Eisenberg and Ruthsdotter).
This same group of women also organized the convention they called “A Convention to discuss the social, civil, and religious conditions and rights of woman” (Eisenberg and Ruthsdotter). It was in this convention that the Declaration of Sentiments was drafted and approved by the women attendees, including the right to suffrage (Eisenberg and Ruthsdotter). From these situation, it could be said that legislation and advocacy shaped women. The laws that favored them and also those which oppressed them have contributed much to what they are right now in the society.
It may be more or less good that resulted to either uplifting or further depression of the women in the society. Moreover, the women of today, given the right to an education, have the chance to gain knowledge and insights within the academe (Jackson and Jones, p. 4). The wave of feminism has gone over to the institutions to bring about the change needed and to heighten the awareness of the people regarding the state of women (Jackson and Jones, p. 4).
Therefore, the academe served as an avenue for the exchange of ideas and the breeding ground for the empowerment of women and served as one of the contributory factors that shaped women to what it is today (Jackson and Jones, p. 4). It is, however, to be noted that the academe only gave the chance to the women who have the capacity and the ability to enter the institution and have formal education. This will narrow down the number of women who can have the chance to reap the fruits of the driving force of women empowerment in the academe. Still, this institution served the purpose of creating an impact to the women.
Also, it can be said that the women were shaped by the literature written by the intellects and experts in the field of women studies (Jackson and Jones, p. 5). The ideas of these people have perpetuated the soul and are expected to have an impact on the way the woman are. The existing literature regarding the field in practice and in theory will add up to the knowledge and awareness of women about themselves. More specifically, these theories on feminism created are “women generating knowledge about women and gender for women” (italics supplied by author) (Jackson and Jones, p.
1). It will also make them more visible and will help in the mainstreaming of women in the different portions of the society. The more literature is written about the women, the greater are the chances, too, of making them more apparent in the society and will make the whole world know that there are actually changes that are happening with the women. Slowly, it will help perpetuate fields which were previously handled by men. In the history, especially with the philosophical thinkers, most of them were men and the ideas they convey are, of course, from the viewpoint of women.
The slightest taint of women in their writings is visible, if there are even any. With the help of authors, both men and women, who write about the women, more and more is known and they become incorporated into the scene of the society. Lately, different fields, some are even unexpected, have been involving women and they even succeeded. These fields give women the chance to excel and realize their full potential. Also, the role of the media, through its different mediums, is of great importance to shaping women (Thornham, p. 231).
It is the fastest way of communicating to people which made advocacy and exchange of ideas a lot easier and accessible to all. Also, it can highlight the success of women in the different fields and will give an update of how they are faring especially with the issues. However, it could also influence the mindset of the women when it comes to what is expected of them. The current trends in fashion, the role expected by them of the society, the behavior they have to manifest, the attitude, and others of the same kind are being given by media the emphasis it deserves to change the line of though of women.
Still, the importance of the history of women can not be totally set aside. It gives out the chronicles of important facts and will serve as a reminder to the women of today. The historical accounts regarding women are, because of their great distinction from men, are being given special shelves in certain libraries. Some also have built their own website to serve as electronic references for greater accessibility. Others may have used other forms such as paintings and other forms of art. All of these are intended to keep the fire burning and to let the people know that there existed such a thing.
The books that contained literature about women’s history proves that the women had experienced a colorful and distinct past, which are not included in most ordinary history books. Different fields have their own different history such as that in sports. They highlight how the women evolved to what it currently is. It deserves special attention since books can be found in any library and can easily be located anywhere. Also, not far from the books are those articles about women in the internet. These are made available for those who do not have access to libraries or would simply want to have a faster means of seeing the past of the women.
However, it is to be noted that some electronic articles go unchecked before published so it is better to be careful about historical accounts they present. Art can also be used as a very convenient and convincing way of representing women. It can give a figurative representation of women that will most clearly capture the situation of the women in the past and can give a better picture and understanding to those who chose to see it today. Another form where women’s past is represented might be through the movies and documentaries that are being produced through films, nowadays.
There is the fact that some people do not have the patience to go through long articles or to identify and capture the meaning of an art. The moving picture can easily and entertainingly give the audience the chance to have a background on what transpired in the past. The history of women should not be gone into oblivion. The entitlements and the benefits enjoyed by the present generation of women are things which should be thanked for and should not be treated as something that came as natural as being born. It is a claim that was made for a long span of time and still is in continuance.
Works Cited Eisenberg, B. and Ruthsdotter, M. “History of the Movement. ” Living the Legacy: The Women’s Rights Movement 1848-1998. 1998. National Women’s History Project. 26 September 2007 <http://www. legacy98. org/move-hist. html>. Jackson, S. and Jones, J. “Thinking for Ourselves: An Introduction to Feminist Theorising. ” Contemporary Feminist Theories. Ed. Stevi Jackson and Jackie Jones. NY, USA: New York University Press, 1998. 1-5. Thornham, S. “Feminist Media and Film Theory. ” Contemporary Feminist Theories. Ed. Stevi Jackson and Jackie Jones. NY, USA: New York University Press, 1998. 231.