A New Life For Women

Length: 5 Pages 1141 Words

A New Life For Women Before the civil war, a woman had a specific place in society, one that was extremely inferior to that of men. People had developed notions of what it meant to be a woman. The Civil War changed those notions. The War was the beginning of woman’s strive for suffrage in America. As the war came to an end, women became more involved in the world, and were allowed to achieve and accomplish a lot of things that only men had done in the past. “The attributes of True Womanhood, by which a woman judged herself and was judged by her husband, her neighbors, and society could be divided into four cardinal virtues- piety, purity, submissiveness, and domesticity.” (Welter 152). In her work, American Quarterly: The cult of True Womanhood, Barbara Welter explains her view on the role of a woman before the Civil War. In order for a girl to reach “true womanhood” she would have to reach for perfection in the four above categories. After the war, two of these attributes began to decline greatly in women, as they began to find new roles in society. Women started becoming more independent, and the submissiveness and domesticity gradually started to fade. They still had these qualities, but they were defini Continue...

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Although things were changing for women, they were slightly different depending on which side of the war the women were on. Men were supposed to be religious, although they rarely had time for it, and supposed to be pure, although it came awfully hard to them, but men were the movers, the doers, the actors. She did not realize what had begun from the war, and that women were actually on the road to earning their rights. "Submission was perhaps the most feminine virtue expected of women. "Agatha Young's investigation of northern women emphasized the emancipatory force of the war for women, but she saw women already eager in the 1850's to move into the 'new and larger world' war would open for them. Although it differed between northern and southern women, change for the better was still encountered among both. "The contrasts between women's lives in prewar northern and southern societies were reflected in women's wartime experiences and, logically have been evident in differing emphases of historical inquiry in the two regions. Frances Peter was a northern woman living in Kentucky during the time of the war. ------------------------------------------------------------------------Bibliography. Chestnut was one of the few women that during the war was not granted more freedom as other women had been.


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