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The influence of women’s suffrage is evident throughout the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. Politically, women have increasingly engaged with issues that affected them greatly while taking leadership positions. This involvement includes advancing ideologies that range from moderate to conservative messages directed toward empowering women. The women’s movements account for these accomplishments. According to Hesse (2020), suffragists were the new constituent bloc aiming at supporting women’s issues. It was considered a triumphant end to entirely patriarchial-oriented systems. For this reason, the movement successfully influenced women to move from the domestic sphere to making achievements such as advancing feminism and creating equality.
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Creation of Democratic Rights Through Feminism
Women’s suffrage significantly contributed to achieving the objectives of feminism revolving around democracy. By the twentieth century, women broke out of the patriarchal systems and out of the domestic sphere. They had moved to public life with more privileges and responsibilities, for example, the right to vote. Initially, women were denied such rights during most of the 19th century and the time before. Proposing the 19th Amendment helped in changing this situation. The suffragists provided a breakthrough for women in America by cementing their place in American democracy. For instance, the participation of women in voting ensured the full participation of people compared to previously, when only half the population voted. The effect of this change is evident in the electoral processes in the 21st century. Midterm elections in 2018 exhibited a wave of female candidates who voted for different positions, including that of the president, an unprecedented case (Young, 2020). This wave is directly reflected in other electoral processes indicating the positive influence of the women’s movement. The success helps supplement the efforts of feminists towards demanding equitable and fair preference of women in the political realm.
Historically, allowing women the right to democratic processes such as elections was significant then and now. It is directly reflected in the larger image that includes women winning elections. The movement contributes to the positive impacts on American women’s lives by changing societal perspectives. Broadly, the efforts towards suffrage trickled down the population to the present-day socially developed country. This has constantly improved the state of women, and it has inspired changes. The movement gradually contributed to the democratic welfare of women in America (Ware, 2020). Success in social development is seen in the thousands of women winning elections and boring in large numbers. The impact is further exemplified in American history, which is now stronger and richer because of the efforts of women such as Susan B. Anthony. The strength of history is seen in the equality between men and women. Through democratic rights, then, women have realized dreams related to equality. These efforts have been recycled to sustain the original objectives of the suffrage and women’s movement.
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Advancing a Better Future With Equality
The future of women concerning equality remains bright due to women’s movements. So far, the demands of equity and fairness, which was integral to the movement, have been met. Through organizing and protesting the exclusion of women from engaging in elections, suffragists questioned the attitudes and ideologies in society. It comprises such ideologies that view women as second-class citizens. They challenged the attitudes and planned out ways of rectifying the situations. Conceptualizing women as a group that required attention and whose issues promoted solutions is a way that the goals of equality were achieved through suffrage (Mkhize & Mgcotyelwa-Ntoni, 2019). However, racism threatened the achievement of this goal as it contributed to discrimination. Women of color were eclipsed from enjoying the movement’s goals as it discriminatively focused on certain races and privileged classes. As a result, women of color were excluded from the vision of women’s suffrage. Therefore, racism compromised feminism during the movement and after the movement. Recent efforts by feminists have adopted approaches that include all races. It recognizes the diversity that threatens the success of women’s movement toward equality.
Conclusively, the result of the women’s movement is improving the efforts to achieve empowerment of women, feminism, and equality. Suffrage created a sense of camaraderie between men and the entire society to uplift women. It provided opportunities for women as they sought to achieve their welfare. Camaraderie enhanced the networks for women, cemented since then, thereby creating a lasting effect on empowerment. This aggressively helped to achieve the objectives that included equality and democratic rights. In terms of equality, the result of the women’s movement has significantly reduced discrimination based on gender. Inclusion is emphasized throughout the times, with its results including improved participation of women in various social systems. One such area is related to democratic rights. As a result of suffrage, women are not only allowed to vote but also vie for various positions. Therefore, the women’s movement has various impacts comprising equality and achieving democratic rights.
- Hesse, M. (2020). Women’s suffrage was a giant leap for democracy. Washington Post. https://www.washingtonpost.com/graphics/2020/lifestyle/100-years-of-womens-suffrage-whats-changed/.
- Mkhize, G. & Mgcotyelwa-Ntoni, N. (2019). The impact of women’s movements’ activism experiences on gender transformation policies in democratic South Africa. Empowering women for gender equity, 33(2), 9-21. https://doi.org/10.1080/10130950.2019.1618637.
- Ware, S. (2020). Leaving all to younger hands: Why the history of the women’s suffragist movement matters. The Brooking Institution. https://www.brookings.edu/essay/leaving-all-to-younger-hands-why-the-history-of-the-womens-suffrage-movement-matters/.
- Young, H. (2020). Women’s Movement Successes of Past 3 Centuries. Right at Home. https://www.rightathome.net/blog/womens-movement-successes-of-past-three-centuries.