Feminism unfinished A short, surprising history of American women's movements

Dorothy Sue Cobble

Book - 2014

In this bold, revisionist history, three leading scholars of women's history provide the first concise history of American women's movements over the nearly hundred years since women gained the right to vote. They eschew the popular--though incomplete--narrative focusing on the 1960s and 1970s, and trace the world-changing social movement to the 1920s. This broader canvas allows for the struggles of all women, including working-class women, to come to the foreground. Among the many myt...hs the book dispels is the notion that feminism was a movement of the largely white, highly educated, upper middle class. The authors vividly render the struggles of those women who organized rallies, demonstrations, and sit-ins--often working alongside civil rights demonstrators--to demand equal wages and better jobs, as well as the right to both sexual pleasure and reproductive control. The book also provides a counterpoint to the contemporary corporate-backed "lean-in" philosophy; the authors argue that this assumes that gains for a tiny elite will help all women. They demonstrate that, to the contrary, the gains women have made were created by working together for social change rather than by striving individually for personal success. While each new generation since 1920 has arrived in a world improved by the efforts of previous struggles, the movement is far from over. Progress is not a birthright but rather a vision that has been constructed, reconstructed, and fought for over and over again.--From publisher description.

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New York : Liveright Publishing Corporation, a division of W. W. Norton & Company [2014]
First edition
Physical Description
xxi, 265 pages : illustrations ; 25 cm
Includes bibliographical references and index.
Main Author
Dorothy Sue Cobble (author)
Other Authors
Linda Gordon (author), Astrid Henry, 1966-
  • More than sex equality : feminism after suffrage / by Dorothy Sue Cobble
  • The Women's Liberation Movement / by Linda Gordon
  • From a mindset to a movement : feminism since 1990 / by Astrid Henry.