Pub. date: 2008 | Online Pub. Date: May 28, 2008 | DOI: 10.4135/9781412963930 | Print ISBN: 9781412941655 | Online ISBN: 9781412963930| Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.About this encyclopedia
Women's Rights Movement
Deirdre Mary Smythe
The women's rights movement (WRM) seeks women's equality with men in all aspects of society, with full access to the same rights and opportunities that men enjoy. Mary Wollstonecraft's A Vindication of the Rights of Woman of 1792 first introduced the concept of rights for women. Previously focused on abstract notions of women's equality, women slowly progressed to battle for constitutional and legal rights, like property rights and suffrage. Early 19th-century intellectual leaders of the American WRM were Lydia Maria Child (1802–80), who wrote the Ladies Family Library , 1832–1835, a history of women; Margaret Fuller (1810–50) and her seminal work, Woman in the Nineteenth Century of 1845; and Elizabeth Ellet (1818–77) who wrote The Women of the American Revolution of 1848. Ninety women came to the Virginia colony in 1619, followed by 18 women and 11 girls who landed in Plymouth, Massachusetts, in 1620. The first women colonists were ...