Susan B Anthony and Fight for Women’s Rights

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Origin of Conflict

July 1848 symbolizes the start of the women right’s movement. It was the conventional meeting that was held in Seneca Falls, New York where a group of strong and brave women like Elizabeth Stanton and Susan B. Anthony came together to share their opinions and thoughts, of the unfairness there was in our country for woman. Of course mostly women attended the event but there were also two men who were present, one being Fredrick Douglass who will later make a big impact in history for African American slaves.(Brown)

At first, they talked about their institutional and social barriers they faced and the absence of their votes in political events, but it later shifted exclusively on the right to vote. (History) That day, establishing their plans, started a revolution. “Men their rights, and nothing more; women, their rights, and nothing less,” was a saying that couldn’t be elaborated better, to explain their ambition towards “justice for all”.(History) During this time the main audience were American woman because African American woman and men were still battling with slavery and racist Jim crow laws, but this event also signified a” greater degree of cultural inclusion, was just on the horizon” for African American women, because not long after a African American abolitionist Sojourner Truth lead the second women rights convention. (Brown)

This meeting not only encouraged women but people throughout history, and even, still till this day to “never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world”. (Eisenberg) It gained attention to woman all over the nation and gave them courage, to stand up for the rights women should have because woman were “robbed of their self-confidence and self-respect and were made totally dependent on men” throughout this time. For instance, women were viewed as legally dead to the law’s eyes, they had to follow laws they had no voice or say in, men had the power to do basically anything they pleased, little to no occupation for women and the ones that were open, men were getting paid unfairly higher for the same tasks.

All this was okay with society and these issues needed to be stopped and that was the role of this meeting, to put an end to gender inequality. An important relationship that came out of this meeting was the friendship which later turned into leaders, Susan B. Anthony and Elizabeth Stanton, who will be the driving force of the seventy-two-year struggle of woman suffrage. Three years later they started the biggest association for woman, famously known as the National Women Suffrage Association.

Susan B. Anthony’s Role in Conflict

Susan B. Anthony, “from a young age had a sense of justice and morality”. (Hansen) As she grew older and matured, she detected the limited rights she had and the unfairness there was in our country. As soon she could she started informing people about the rights us woman deserved. Starting with the 1853 state teachers’ convention, Anthony called for women to be admitted to professions and fought for them to have better pay. (Gordon) She also asked for women to have a voice at the convention and to speak out for what’s right, with absolutely “no fear”. (Gordon)

In 1856 Anthony became an agent for the American Anti-Slavery Society, arranging meetings, making speeches, putting up posters, and distributing pan-flips. (History) Trying to make a difference came with a price and it was after she became an agent, she started getting hate for what she stood up for. encountering hostile mobs, and armed threats was just a glimpse to what she had to endure. (Hughes) In 1859, Anthony spoke before the state teachers in Troy, N.Y. and Massachusetts arguing for coeducation, claiming there was no differences between the minds of men and women.

The momentum of the women’ s rights was incredibly low due to the civil war. (Hansen) but during the Reconstruction Era the lifetime alliance of Stanton and Anthony as women right’s activist, both protested and went on to a campaign for full citizenship for women and people of any race, including the right to vote, in the Fourteenth and Fifteenth Amendment, but were disappointed when they found out women of any race were excluded to both.(Brown) To many American woman, they saw this as a total unfairness as slaves were given the right to vote yet American woman who were more of a priority than former slaves at the time, were unfairly treated non the less, denied the right to vote.

But that didn’t stop Anthony, she continued to campaign for equal rights. She started her own newspaper called “The Revolution” which started publishing in 1968. It allowed her to use her voice and share her views on society. (Biography) She began with, attacking lynching and racial pre-justice. In 1870 Anthony campaigned vigorously for women’s suffrage and took matters into her own hands and came up with a plan with her three sisters, and other women who volunteered, to vote, despite what the law said, which ended with they’re arrest at Rochester, New York in 1872. Because of the bravery and attention this act gathered congress finally took notice. (History)

Resolution of Conflict

After Anthony’s death in 1906, a phrase from her last suffrage speech, became the motto for many future young leaders which is ‘Failure is Impossible,’. (Gordon) That’s exactly what Anthony achieved throughout her life time. She Made the impossible, happen, and gave women the confidence to stand up and not be seen as objects, but equal human beings. Today not only does she continue her legacy of being a role to women but to everyone. She marks history as being one of the few people that had the courage to get up and say enough’s, enough and make a change.

Not long after her death, only Fourteen short years later in 1920, the 19th Amendment was ratified. Women had finally won the right to vote. It was a decision that many had dreamed of for years. Time finally came, and it all boiled down to one vote in the Tennessee house, twenty-four-year-old Harry Burns which many people knew was against the idea of women’s rights. But during the time of his vote, he found a letter from his mother writing “don’t forget to be a good boy and vote for suffrage”. (Hansen) Women finally won after a long seventy-two-year fight, the amendment couldn’t have happened if it was not for the strong and powerful women like Stanton, and especially Anthony for her lifelong dedication to sexual and race equality in America.

It took many conventions, meetings, traveling, and even being detained, if your Susan B. Anthony. This movement showed the strength women endured before the movement, which was feeling like you were dead to the eyes of the law, not being able to own any property, feeling dehumanized by their husbands, being constantly abused by them, not being able to enter professions, but above all being robbed of your self -respect and dignity, and having the strength to overcome it. It’s because of a few brave women who sought for a change in our country and a brighter future.

Work Cited

  1. Biography. “Susan B. Anthony.” Biography.com, A&E Networks Television, 27 Feb. 2018, www.biography.com/people/susan-b-anthony-194905.
  2. Brown, Tammy. “Celebrate Women’s Suffrage, but Don’t Whitewash the Movement’s Racism.” American Civil Liberties Union, Aclu, 2018, www.aclu.org/blog/womens-rights/celebrate-womens-suffrage-dont-whitewash-movements-racism.
  3. Eisenberg, Bonnie. “History of the Women’s Rights Movement.” National Women’s History Project, 1998, www.nwhp.org/resources/womens-rights-movement/history-of-the-womens-rights-movement/.
  4. Gordon, Ann. “Selected Documents.” Declaration of Sentiments and Resolutions, Seneca Falls: Stanton and Anthony Papers Online, 2007, www.ecssba.rutgers.edu/docs/documents.html.
  5. Hansen. “Women’s Suffrage: The Movement.” Social Welfare History Project, 31 Oct. 2018, socialwelfare.library.vcu.edu/woman-suffrage/woman-suffrage-movement/.
  6. Hayward, Nancy. “Susan B. Anthony.” National Women’s History Museum, 2017, https://www.womenshistory.org/
  7. History, Art & Archives, U.S. House of Representatives, Office of the Historian, Women in Congress, 1917–2006. Washington, D.C.: U.S. Government Printing Office, 2007. “The Women’s Rights Movement, 1848–1920,” https://history.house.gov/Exhibitions-and-Publications/WIC/Historical-Essays/No-Lady/Womens-Rights/
  8. Hughes, Deborah. “Susan B. Anthony House.” Susan B. Anthony House: Her Story, 2013, www.susanbanthonyhouse.org/her-story/suffrage-movement.php.

Cite this paper

Susan B Anthony and Fight for Women’s Rights. (2021, Dec 21). Retrieved from https://samploon.com/susan-b-anthony-and-fight-for-womens-rights/

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