Feminism is usually thought of as a political and or social movement, but it also includes the analysis of power in its various forms as it relates to women. It advocates critical inquiry into the more and less obvious mechanisms that distribute power. One cannot state that feminism is a movement advocating equality for women, because some feminists argue that standards of equality developed by the state are based on the exclusion of female identity: The abstract neutral citizen is presumed to be male (Kessler, 36).
Feminists advocated that women should taking back control of the birth process—from what they saw as a male-dominated, overly technological medical profession—through means such as midwifery and the Lamaze technique. By the 1980s, many feminists were writing about their experiences as mothers and using it as motivation for their activism; by the 1990s, the concerns of mothers and children occupied a central place on many feminist agendas.
The First Wave of Feminism
The first wave is commonly traced back to the emergence of movements demanding suffrage for women. However, it should be noted that women played a central role in the French Revolution; the fight for universal rights was successful in part because of women's participation in the democratic uprising (Scott, 22).
The Second Wave Of Feminism
The second wave of feminism became a popular movement in the 1960s, but its guiding principle can be traced back to Simone de Beauvoir's The Second Sex, which observed, “One is not born, but rather becomes a woman.”
Third Wave Feminism
The third wave is above all characterized by a plurality of strategies and a desire for inclusive. The start of the third wave was declared in Ms. Magazine in 1992 by Rebecca Walker in a piece titled, “Becoming the Third Wave.” Throughout the 1980s, feminism had come to be considered an outdated battle, or one that had been won during the 1970s due to gain in reproductive choice and the inclusion of girls and women into sports, the military, professional life, and educational institutions. Walker's declaration was that it was not a post-feminist age, but rather that the start of a new form of the feminist movement has grown in popularity with the political shifts in the twenty-first century. Women's rights and opportunities appear to need defense, even as women around the world gain more inclusion in the formal political process (Kessler, 36)s.
One school of thought has accepted the differences between femininity and masculinity as they are socially constructed and made arguments that society as a whole would be more just if it were to incorporate female models of behavior into the normative standard. The notion that there is a difference between female and male ethics is longstanding, but its more recent incarnation can be traced back to responses to a survey conducted by Lawrence Kohlberg in 1970, from which he concluded that females were less ethical than males.
Issues of Fulfillment
Beyond issues of whether and when to mother, and the relationship between identity and motherhood, feminism has explored ...