Critical Evaluation Essay
“Now We Can Begin” an essay by Crystal Eastman is a very powerful essay. Eastman makes the point know in her essay that an honest and true feminist no matter where she stands in the movement she will see to the woman’s fight with strength and courage and how it matters in the future and as well as its difference in its approach for the workers fight for industrial freedom. Eastman state “In fighting for the right to vote most women have tried to be either non-committal or thoroughly respectable on every other subject. Now they can say what they are really after; and what they are after, in common with all the rest of the struggling world, is freedom” (Eastman).
The women’s rights movement had many women who fought for women’s rights, some of these women included Susan B. Anthony, Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Lucretia Mott and many more. These women worked extremely hard as activist for women’s rights. The fight lasted for many years, but they day finally came and women got the right to vote and now they could begin. History.house.gov states “ fortified by the constitutional victory of suffrage reformers in 1920, the handful of new women in Congress embarked on what would become a century-long odyssey to broaden women’s role in government, so that in Catt’s words, they might “score advantage to their ideals.” The profiles in this book about these pioneer women Members and their successors relate the story of that odyssey during the course of the 20th century and into the 21st century” (history.house.gov). During 1920 Eastman wrote an essay about this very issue. In Eastman’s view she is pointing out to her audience what women went thorough as a whole group doing that time frame. This essay was also an appeal to society now that women in the American society had the right to vote that they also be treated just the same as the men in American society that they were a part of.
In 1848 there were two things that America was dealing with at the time and those two issues were women’s rights and slavery. During that same time Elizabeth Cady Stanton was head of the Women’s Rights Convention in New York. It was with much time and effort put into many conferences that the amendment which gave the women the right to vote was written by Susan Anthony, but the amendment was not passed and made law until 1920. During this time is when Crystal Eastman started stating her views and ideas of what she would like to happen. Eastman was there first hand to see that women did not have any rights during her short life so the having the Eastman writing this article is a very valuable trustworthy source as an activist for women’s rights. Crystal Eastman wanted to see change this is obvious seeing how she helped found the International League for Peace and Freedom this group was previously named the Woman’s Peace Party Crystal Eastman served as president of this organization.
Eastman states how grateful she is that the law was passed that gave women the right to vote but, that is not all she expressed that she wanted more. East writes this essay playing on the emotions and logical thinking of her audience. Eastman states “Freedom of choice in occupation and individual economic independence for women: How shall we approach this next feminist objective? First, by breaking down all remaining barriers, actual as well as legal, which make it difficult for women to enter or succeed in the various professions, to go into and get on in business, to learn trades and practice them, to join trades unions” (Eastman). In this essay Eastman makes sure that is known that there is more to women that just staying at home and taking care of the house and caring for children. When reading this essay and the argument that Eastman portrays is a successful essay. Due to the hard work and efforts of Eastman and those before her such as Stanton and Motts the set and laid the foundation for success in the fight of the women’s rights movement gaining equal fair opportunities for women.
“Now We Can Begin.” Women’s History – Comprehensive Resources – Biographies, Quotes, Events. N.p., n.d. Web. 21 Sept. 2014. “The Women’s Rights Movement, 1848-1920 | US House of Representatives: History, Art & Archives.” US House of Representatives: History, Art & Archives. N.p., n.d. Web. 21 Sept. 2014.