Concept Of Women In Iron Jawed Angels: Film Analysis

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For years, women were looked at as fragile beings, who were only good for maintaining the household and making children. Many centuries ago, women were viewed as property, they were owned by their fathers and once married they belonged to their husbands. They had barely any rights even though they played a huge role in society. All the men they cratered to were made from a woman. Women wanted empowerment, equality, and they made sure their voices were heard.

Way before 1848, Abigail Adams was the first lady to President John Adams, but she wasn’t only his wife, she was also his adviser. John Adams had depended so much on his wife; she was a huge inspiration to his presidency. When she was younger, she loved to read and studying different types of literature but because at the time females weren’t allowed to attend school, she couldn’t really do much. But she was an extremely intelligent woman. During the American Revolution, John Adams had spent a lot of time away from the home and she was left to care for the household. At the time women had no political say so in her letter “Remember the Ladies” she expressed how she felt about women and how women she be treated. And if they weren’t treated correctly that they would form a rebellion. She wanted the founding fathers not to forget the women. Her letter was the first step for the fight of women’s rights.

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In 1848 the Seneca Falls Convention was a women’s rights organization in New York. 300 people attended to discuss the issues of women’s rights such as voting, better education, and more job opportunities for women. Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Lucretia Mott were the women who held the convention. Elizabeth Cady Stanton had written the Declaration of Sentiments and Resolution, the document had been signed by 68 women and 32 men. the document had stated how women were treated unfairly towards men and how when weren’t allowed to vote. At the time, women had no say in government decisions, so they had faced a lot of discrimination and basically got laughed at by the men in government. But they didn’t give up, the movement continued to grow, women from all over the United States participle to have their voices heard.

Susan B. Anthony was a women’s rights activist who had organized the 1st women’s suffrage movement along with Elizabeth Cady Stanton, who was also a social activist. They founded the National Woman’s Suffrage Association in 1869. Meanwhile, another organization called American Woman Suffrage Association was created by, Lucy Stone, Julia Ward Howe, and Henry Blackwell. But due to the 15th Amendment, which allowed African American men the right vote was ratified, it divided the groups. AWSA had fully supported it but NWSA did not, it didn’t include the right for women’s suffrage. But later, the groups ended up uniting together and created the National American Woman Suffrage Association.

The organizations faced many challenges, the women had tried placing their votes at polling places and built lawsuits even when they were rejected. But It got them a lot of attention. Susan B. Anthony had got arrested because she had cast her vote for the presidential election, and it made people more aware of the movement. They advocated lawsuits to push their way into the Supreme court, so the justices gave women a constitutional vote. In 1872, Minor V Happersett rejected the demands for women’s suffrage because they did not give anyone the right to suffrage. The women of the movement had adopted strategies for universal Suffrage. They organized amendments for women’s right to vote and campaigns that would help states approve women’s rights to vote. Ms. Stanton died in 1902 and Ms. Anthony had died 1906, neither of the women had gotten to experience the right to vote.

In 1910 the first suffrage parade had been organized in New York by The Women’s Political Union. During 1910 through 1918, a lot of the states had approved the rights for women to vote, but it was still not recognized in the nation. The states that extended it were, Oregon, Arizona, California, Kansas, and Washington. A huge victory for the women happened in 1913 in Springfield the state legislature had granted the right to vote for women, Ruth Hanna McCormick helped lead the fight, she was a future Congresswoman. About a year later, Montana joined in and granted the right for women to vote, this was from the help of Jeannette Rankin.

In 1913, a rival Congressional Union had been formed by a young activist, Alice Paul. It later became named The National Woman’s Party. Paul’s group held rallies and marches to raise awareness for the public and to receive support from others. She drew in younger women for the movement and it helped push for equality. And because President Woodrow Wilson had obstructed the extension for women’s voting, women had attacked him.

Carrie Chapman Catt, who was the former President of NAWSA, took her position once again. In 1915, she proved that she can be an administrator and organize. Her strategized needed relentless efforts and discipline to get states referenda on voting it was especially needed for the nonwestern states. In 1917, full voting rights were granted in New York and Arkansas. Voting rights were argued by President Wilson, he had converted to the suffrage. On April 2nd, women was sworn into 65th Congress, Montana Jeannette Rankin was elected 2 years later and became the first woman to serve the National legislature.

During the time of Suffrage movement World War, I was going on. Alice Paul had started a hunger strike and while in prison they forced the women to eat eggs and milk just for nutrition. President Wilson told the United States that women’s suffrage was needed but for a “war measure”. Later, that year World War I ended in November. Susan B Anthony’s, original Amendment was introduced to Congress and it was passed by the House of Representatives. Women had formed a women’s league to collect information. They wanted to make sure there were good working conditions for the women. A year later, Tennessee had become the 36th state that approved the 19th Amendment. Women’s right to vote was ratified on August 26, 1920, in November of that year, millions of women had casted their votes for the very first time.

In the 2004 movie, Iron Jawed Angels, a young woman named Alice Paul, played by Hilary Stank plays a character in a historical movie about the women’s suffrage. Alice Paul strongly believes that women should have the right to vote. Many women had joined along side her including her close friend Lucy Burns. In the movie, the National America Woman Suffrage Association gave Alice Paul permission to lead a parade on inauguration day for President Wilson. The film shows all the struggles they had all gone through and the backlash they received.

In one of the scenes, Alice Paul and Lucy Burns were seeking other women for the parade. They had gone to a factory because at the time many women worked in small factories. They had spoken to the women and at first, they opposed to the action. Alice Paul had stepped in and talked about how many women had died weeks before due to a fire, they couldn’t escape because there was no emergency exit. This scene indicted how women worked in poor working environments and no one did anything to resolve it. The women had agreed, and they all decided to join the movement.

Another conflict shown in the film was when an African America Women showed up and told Paul that she refuses to march in the back. Women from the south still did not see black women as equal and because of that they threaten not to march if the black women weren’t in the back. The African Women had made a remark saying “What? Are worried we will march out of step.” During this time black women were also fighting for equality and many women from the south still saw them as less than them. With a disagreement like that it could have made the women go against each other and they really didn’t need this type of conflict.

Many of the struggles the women faced were towards men. During the parade march many men and women watched all the activist march down the street. While many stayed positive others did not. The men that attended the parade, raged out on the women. They shouted sexual remarks, insulted them, and even threw bottles and trash. After a while they completely lashed out and started destroying the women’s signs, floats, and flags. Many of the married women had to deal with their husbands telling them what to do and what not to do. The wife of the senator had even threatened to take away her children because she protested with the women. What spoke to me in the scene was when she yelled back at him and basically told him that he acts like this is just his house, indicted she does all the work and she takes care of all the children.

The women of the association had spoken to President Wilson, he had acted like he had no idea what the suffrage movement was about and just told the women he will get back to them. The women ended up having a peaceful protest outside the white house. They made sure everyone knew they would be there dawn till dusk until they get what they want. More and more women followed the protest. The men didn’t not like that. During this time a World War broke out. And all the women received even more backlash because the men believed they should all be home taking care of the children and fallen soldiers. The men then attacked the women and because it caused an outrage, they used that against the women have the protest. Lucy Burns and many other women were arrested during this time.

While in prison, they were treated like animals. Lucy Burns was tied up and they other women stood with her still. Once Alice Paul got arrested the prison setting got worse. You can see clearly that they did not like Alice Paul because she stood up for what she believed in. In the first scene where she got into the prison, she had asked one of the guards to open the windows. The women have the prison were forced to work while in there and it was extremely hot. They didn’t listen so she threw her shoe out the window. They then took her to solitary confinement, and she began a hunger strike while there. Once she got out, she still protested by having the hunger strike, but the guards ended up force feeding her eggs and milk.

Carrie Catt tried getting the President to support suffrage, but he used the accuse that there was a war going on. The Senator had visited his wife and she gave him a note about how they are mistreating the women of the protest. Newspapers of the force feeding leaked and the public shifted over to the suffrage which is known as “Iron Jawed Angels”. Once Catt gets the President to support the suffrage, all the women were released from prison. He came out with a speech in favor of the movement.

Many men and women joined along side of the movement and it made it a little bit easier for them. A court was held and people who were opposed to the movement worse red roses. At first many of the states were against giving women the vote and only one state was for it. But in 1920 35 of the states ratified the amendment. They still needed one more vote. The deciding vote went to Tennessee. August 26, 1920, Susan B. Anthony’s amendment became a law for millions of women around the nation. At the end of the movie, a celebration broke out because the women had succeeded in getting suffrage. The movie really helped open my eyes to how much struggles they had all gone through. It was a very tough time for the women of the suffrage but at the end the showed fighting and working for what they deserve pays off.

Women have come a long way since 1920. We can be a part of congress, we can work any job, we have a better education, and so much more. But, are women treated equal yet? Sure, women are allowed the same rights as men and we are now allowed to do as we please but personally, I think our society takes advantage of women. We are still treated unfairly in many ways.

There are many people who disagree with the statement of how women aren’t equal to men. A lot of this people dislike the feminist’s movement and believe that women are equal. A huge probably in towards society is how many get paid less in the workforce. People say that the only reason why women get paid less is because Women y don’t work as hard as men. But personally, I think women are some of the hardest work I know. They must work hard because we are constantly compared to men. All my life I’ve heard sexist statements about how I should act like a girl or I’m weak because I’m a girl. But I’m capable of doing just as much as men.

Another thing that women are being taken advantage of is, how much we pay for beauty products. When going to the store my products and clothing are always more expensive than my boyfriends. And a reason for that is that companies take advantage of women because they know we constantly change our fashions and we are all into beauty products. But it’s because we are all labeled as having to be beautiful. Our people were supposed to envy constantly buy the most expensive beauty products. So, beauty companies and clothing brands take advantage of that. They make all our stuff expensive because they know we will still pay for it. One item I believe we shouldn’t have to buy for are pads and tampons, we didn’t ask to have a period and if you do the average on how much we pay for feminine products its crazy. Guys do not have periods so that’s one less item for them to buy monthly, therefore we spend way more money than men.

Although women are a part of congress, they are still treated unfairly. The fact that we haven’t had a female president is sad. The United States is full of men who believe they can’t respect a woman in office but the only reason why they are here is because their mothers carried them for 9 months and dealt with them for 18 years. In the house there are only 25 percent that are women. We need a bigger say in congress. Women Soldiers still receive harassment and they are literally fighting for this country.

When I was a little girl, boys use to always tell me I can’t do something because I’m a girl. Being a female in this world can be tough. Men see us as objects that they can use, I know a lot of guys who don’t look to date a girl just date her but to have sex with her. I strongly dislike that men think it okay to stare at a woman’s body. We are supposed to be equal. And in the workforce we are treated like we are fragile even when we are working the same job as a male. Men are considered to be “inferior” to women. But women are constantly dealing with the stuff that’s extremely difficult.

Today we can change, we can stand up for what is right. Men need to speak up and say this isn’t right. If a man won’t listen to women, then a man needs to stand for a woman. we can live in this world without being treated unfairly but it takes everyone to do it. There are still thousands of men who abuse their women or tell them they can’t do certain things. A woman should be able to feel safe anywhere she goes and not have to worry about being harassed. The world an ugly place. Men need to teach their daughters that they are so much more. The world can do that. It just takes someone to stand and speak up.


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