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Yet, feminists such as Voltairine de Cleyre and Margaret Sanger were still active in campaigning for women's sexual, reproductive, and economic rights at this time.In 1854, Florence Nightingale established female nurses as adjuncts to the military.Feminist theory emerged from these feminist movements.
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HISTORY AND THEORY OF FEMINISM The term feminism can be used to describe a political, cultural or economic movement aimed at establishing equal rights and legal protection for women.
The first wave refers mainly to women's suffrage movements of the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries (mainly concerned with women's right to vote).
The second wave refers to the ideas and actions associated with the women's liberation movement beginning in the 1960s (which campaigned for legal and social rights for women).
During much of its history, most feminist movements and theories had leaders who were predominantly middle-class white women from Western Europe and North America.
However, at least since Sojourner Truth's 1851 speech to American feminists, women of other races have proposed alternative feminisms.In Britain the Suffragettes and, possibly more effectively, the Suffragists campaigned for the women's vote.In 1918 the Representation of the People Act 1918 was passed granting the vote to women over the age of 30 who owned houses.Some Postcolonial Feminists, such as Chandra Talpade Mohanty, are critical of Western feminism for being ethnocentric.Black feminists, such as Angela Davis and Alice Walker, share this view.Feminism involves political and sociological theories and philosophies concerned with issues of gender difference, as well as a movement that advocates gender equality for women and campaigns for women's rights and interests.Although the terms "feminism" and "feminist" did not gain widespread use until the 1970s, they were already being used in the public parlance much earlier; for instance, Katherine Hepburn speaks of the "feminist movement" in the 1942 film Woman of the Year.History Simone de Beauvoir wrote that "the first time we see a woman take up her pen in defense of her sex" was Christine de Pizan who wrote Epitre au Dieu d'Amour (Epistle to the God of Love) in the 15th century.Heinrich Cornelius Agrippa and Modesta di Pozzo di Forzi worked in the 16th century.Originally it focused on the promotion of equal contract and property rights for women and the opposition to chattel marriage and ownership of married women (and their children) by their husbands.However, by the end of the nineteenth century, activism focused primarily on gaining political power, particularly the right of women's suffrage.