Cady Stanton, an American early age’s reform advocate and feminist, was born 12 November 1815 at Johnstown USA and died on the 26 October 1902. I read this biography of her a few weeks ago and here are my feelings. What I found really astonishing in her life as feminist is that, she was married and mother of seven children (this is actually an exception among feminists). As all the woman’s rights advocate I have read so far, there is always something about their lives. Something that right from the beginning points out the fact that they were not meant to be common housewives and obey the standards of the society of their time. Let us have a look at Cady Stanton’s most prominent feminist’s views and accomplishments.
From the young psychologically disturbed woman to the eighty something years old feminist, Cady Stanton lived for a cause which revealed to her as early as from her childhood which is woman’s rights. From her early childhood, her uncommon nature started to show as Cady would suffer some health troubles during her childhood. Still, her opinion about the society of her time made it clear that she was not meant to be the housewife the society ask all of them to be by then. The young Cady believed that woman’s oppression was a crucial issue and that women had to be central agents in social transformation.
Friends described her as someone courageous and self-reliant although she lived her life upon the basic values of family life. Throughout her life and activist career, she dared taking actions even when she knew results were not going to be outstanding. For example, in 1866 she was the first woman in the history of the US to run for congress. Out of 20,000 votes, she received twenty four. But this was never to stop her since the most important was probably the symbol behind her actions.
A forefront of the American social reform and the fight for woman’s right in a society where the woman was still oppressed, she dedicated her life to shedding the light upon issues such as liberalized divorced, equality between men and women, coeducation, self-control in sex relations. Enlighten motherhood, the behavior of men and women, marriage, birth control were also of great concern to her. By enlighten motherhood, she meant the ability for each woman to be able to go about proper conception and gestation. As an early age’s feminist, Cady Stanton cherished the core of family life and child welfare, among the many lectures she gave she incorporated childcare advice, marriage and maternity.
This quote from the book seems to describe a situation or a society which sounds so familiar to me.
One of her major objection of the women’s fashion of her day was that the accentuation of the bosom and hips then popular advertised woman’s sexuality over her mind…
Definitely, in my understanding, Elizabeth Cady Stanton’s vision of the ideal woman is that of a woman who either abandon domesticity or raise motherhood to new dimensions of individual and social reform. In my opinion, her view of feminism is definitely one of the most exceptional among those I have explored so far.
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