European Migrant Crisis Asylum

European Migrant Crisis

After 66 years of ratification of asylum, when the Geneva Convention on Refugees was prepared and implemented to officially recognize the rights of asylum seekers and refugees, the world stands in the midst of a global crisis questioning the principles on which this document prepared and ultimately applied on a large international scale for nations to follow and pursue. Fassin (2013) postulates that amidst the crisis which has hit a number of nations owing to the political conditions of various nations it is intriguing to explore the historical value and significance of how refugees came to be and the laws that were put in place to offer them protection from challenging conditions. Before proceeding with commenting on the present scenario of the global refugee crisis which has predominantly impacted European nations, it is imperative to establish the definition of refugee. According to Price, a refugee or asylum seeker is an individual that has been compelled or forced to flee their home country and seek refuge in another country due to a number of reasons.

These reasons may include fear of political and religious persecution, genocide, civil war or the occurrence of a catastrophic event which has made it impossible for the individual to continue to lead their life in their home nation.

According to a report presented by the BBC, the European refugee crisis was triggered in 2015 with the influx of migrants into European nations. The arrival of asylum seekers in the continent was primarily initiated by the conflict and civil war in Syria where the Islamic State is fighting against government powers to impose their fundamentalist ideology and overtake a number of cities within the country. Following the arrival of individuals and families from Syria, the second and third largest nationalities claiming refuge in European nations Afghanistanis and Iraqis primarily on the grounds of civil unrest, violence and terrorist activity in the nations. According to the statistics provided by the BBC, Germany has the highest asylum seeker claims across all countries of Europe, followed by a major portion of refugees entering Italy, UK and Greece. The poor socioeconomic conditions of refugees have captured the attention of global media and world leaders continue to debate about the possible solutions to manage this crisis, however, at present, it is continuing to escalate.

Ethics and Politics of Asylum

The key objectives of this assessment have been set out to examine the ethics and politics of asylum as presented in Auslander Raus to understand who has the right to live in ‘new’ Europe. Auslander Raus or Foreigners Out! Is a documentary directed by Christoph Schlingensief following the victory of extreme right parties and candidates during Austrian election – as a mark of protest and to show his disbelief over the election of such right-wing extremist candidates the filmmaker placed a concentration camp in the middle of the country’s capital to denounce the ideologies which led to their election in the first place. The paper critically examines asylum from an ethical and political standpoint in the light of this documentary by tracing the publics’ perception of asylum seekers in various parts of the globe and ultimately linking it to the perceptions and thought processes which are emerging in Europe against unauthorised migrants. The paper then addresses the concerns which are being raised by them and sheds light on the message of Auslander Raus and notes how it applies to the scenario and grave situation which is unfolding right in front of the world in various European nations that have been hit by the refugee crisis.

Asylum seekers in many scenarios are viewed as the ‘other’, the sense of exclusion that they experience within their own communities is marked by a great degree of animosity from others who may view their motives with a negative connotation and essentially view them as a burden on their own community, economy and country (Haslam and Pedersen, 2007). Studying the attitudes of Australian towards asylum seekers that come into the country, a research found that Australians had mixed reactions which swayed towards the negative side when forming opinions about refugees that come into the country. The authors note that the most common concerns held by the general public pertaining to their arrival were related to raising questions about how they would integrate into society and fears about their inability to cope with the cultural shock that they may undergo upon their arrival into the country (McKay, Thomas and Kneebone, 2012). Many Australians whose views were taken during the course of this research also expressed their concerns that the asylum seekers did not use the ‘right way’ to enter their country which points to the understanding that many residents believe that the motivations for entering into a specific country based on the grounds of asylum are not justified or somehow invalidates their right to be in the country.

The research of Louis et al. (2007) explored the fundamental reasons why citizens and the general public hold a negative view against asylum seekers – the primary problems that have emerged from the entry of millions of documented and undocumented workers are associated with how they will cope with and accept the cultural norms that are so different and varied from their own (55). The study also highlighted the portrayal of a negative attitude by citizens in situations when they were expected to interact with asylum seekers.

As noted previously, the number of applications for people seeking asylum in Europe rapidly increased in 2015 due to the state of the civil war in Syria which escalated tensions in the Middle East and saw the rapid rise of the Islamic State across the country and some parts of Iraq (Leithhold, 2015). While the governments of EU states were positive at first with the arrival of the migrants, it was soon observed that the crisis grew greater than expected. For instance, identifying amongst migrant applications that held credibility and that lacked any validation or genuine reason for seeking asylum emerged as a challenge. When it was realised that the huge migrant influx was close to becoming a major human rights and social issue, Leithhold (2015) notes that many countries began to develop and impose legislations to explore a way of more effectively dealing with the situation. However, at that point, the crisis had already reached a major breaking point with reported illegal activity at migrant camps, acts of sexual assaults reported by migrants in Cologne and even stabbings reported in parts of Europe that were ultimately traced back to migrant men that had posed as children to enter the EU states.

European Migrant Crisis Asylum
European Migrant Crisis Asylum

According to a report presented by BBC (2016), gangs of men were seen assaulting women and engaging in illegal activities including robbery during a New Year’s celebration in Cologne, Germany. Around 100 women reported becoming victims of these crimes and were subjected to groping and touching. As the media picked on this story, reports emerged that many of these men who were claimed to be of Syrian descent stated that it was the women’s provocative clothing and mannerisms which encouraged them to engage in such activities and that they were ‘asking for it’. Rasmussen et al. (2016) write that the fact that these attacks took place in Europe and the emotional and physical ordeal that the women had to go through because of them represent the level of integration that refugees and especially men have been able to depict.

Western society prides itself on promoting equal rights for women and an individual’s sense of dressing should never be viewed as an excuse for sexual assault and even rape because it defies the principles of consent. Therefore, the fact that these attacks took place in such a progressive society raised questions about the ethics of asylum and whether nations should be obliged or expected to offer refugees a place if their lack of ability to integrate within society causes issues and grave problems for the community that resides there.

However, the sensationalization of such news in the Western media and wrong implications of criminal activity that were pinned upon migrant men developed a mindset of fear and allegations where a narrative of viewing asylum seekers as evil or the ‘other’ ones emerged. It should be noted that these stories were not essentially true to the greatest extent, some were fabricated and some cases were never even reported. However, the situation escalated to the extent that right-wing organisations were able to capitalise on this negative public sentiment and actively denounce the entry of asylum seekers often going to lengths were acts of racism were recorded in camps that were housing such individuals. The media must play a responsible role in promoting the integration of migrants rather than singling them out and promoting the ‘us versus them’ rhetoric which is harmful to enhance their extent of cohesion within society. These initiatives can only lessen the tensions between the two sides and enable the start of productive dialogue to better understand the views of the other party and respectfully agree or disagree with them (Cabot, 2014).

European Migrant Crisis

This understanding and course of events lead to the fundamental point of who is ultimately allowed and has a right to live in this ‘new’ Europe? Given the political situation that has erupted in the countries of asylum seekers sparked by terrorist activity that has its roots in extremist ideologies – does Europe have a moral obligation to offer a place of safety and security to migrant families? Children, women and the elderly that have been driven out of their homes due to the ravages of war and those who have nothing to do with how the events have in their own countries. At this stage, the ethical dimension of asylum emerges and takes a new shape because it is ultimately a moral perspective which encourages humans to understand the value of human life and recognise its worth. Who decides whether the asylum seekers are granted a place to live in Europe, the narrative promoted in AuslanderRaus definitely offers a greater insight into this notion and explains how the anti-refugee ideology of rightist fundamentalists is no different from any other ideology that promotes extremist views (Volf, 2010).

As suggested in the research of Leithhold, EU states only began to pass legislations pertaining to asylum seekers and refugees once the crisis had already become grave, therefore, a proper policy or legislation was not documenting their entry when the civil war in Syria first broke out and when the unrest in the Middle East was at its peak. Hansen has stated that protecting the rights of refugees and ultimately those who wish to seek asylum in a country must be documented legally to ensure that the rights of all individuals are protected and that they are able to live freely in a new country without the threat of deportation or violence.

From the aforementioned perspective, the question of who gets to live in Europe can be answered by addressing the legal dimension of the topic – if the satirical nature of political asylum is to be compared with this statement as it has been projected in Auslander Raus it would be intriguing to note that the documentary simply shows the life of a few refugees housed in a Big Brother however, it does not show how they got to Austria, the land that offered them asylum. This is distinctly what can be understood from the premise of the documentary – the key issue with an individual’s refugee status emerges if their arrival in the country is undocumented or not supported by their legal right to enter the country. With respect to this point, Hansen raises the notion that German laws on asylum have been generous rather than practical. This drawback with the country’s policy has what led to the issues that communities face with the influx of migrants which may suggest that how refugees are selected to enter the country and on what basis they are granted permission is an issue rather than the asylum itself.

Asylum From A Legal and Political Perspective

In their research Hanewald et al. (2016) raised a critical point when discussing asylum from a legal and political perspective by stating that the implementation of any laws pertaining to the entry of migrants simply does not relate to their situation but is subjected to the mental and physical health of the refugee as well (166). In a healthcare system which may continue to become burdened if corrective measures are not taken on an immediate basis, it would be unfair for the citizens of a country to bear the additional burden of taking care of individuals who have been left with mental and physical health issues because of the situation in their country. Thus, the simple need to enter a country as a refugee does not offer a proper justification to act as a premise for them to be granted refugee status.

Caviedes (2016) states that with respect to the monitoring of refugees and individuals that are granted migrant status, there is a need to implement effective structures to ensure that their arrival is based on concrete reason on the basis of which they have been granted asylum. The ability to integrate and accept the cultural norms and values is a fundamental point in this case because it decides the extent to which the individual will prove to be a valuable and productive member of society rather than becoming a burden on tax payer’s hard earned money.

Migration governance as a comprehensive model and structure is a critical point of consideration in this case because it addresses and assesses individuals on the basis of the factors which determine their level of integration and also judges their potential to become long term residents. Caviedes recommends that measures such as requiring migrants to take language, culture and civics classes to better enlighten them and offer them tools to successfully integrate within society (559). Moreover, another factor that could better assist the selection of migrants once they apply for asylum is determining whether they already have family members residing in the country they wish to enter. Caviedes states that such cases are more preferable in comparison with situations where the individual has no roots tying the country to them because it offers them a platform to understand the society that they are about to enter (560).

Trauner (2016) notes that what the world is witnessing today in Europe with respect to the migrant and refugee crisis is reflective of policy failures on the part of the nation’s governments. Not only have these policies overburdened neighbouring states wherein migrant numbers are too high but they have also led to the building up of financial constraints on economies that are struggling to provide these new entrants with a living in the society and create jobs against the backdrop of a struggling global economy.

Refugees

As depicted in Auslander Raus, the uncertainty of immigration and refugees only becomes more complex when there is no trace of where they came from and no trace of their background and history (Watts 165). The shady details of their past only create more distrust amongst the community where they are forced to grow more hateful and distrustful of what they view as aliens in their own community. However, a more documented approach wherein a method is devised to check the background of these individuals can also fulfil the moral and ethical obligations of giving them a new start at life while ensuring that the security and well-being of nation’s citizens are not compromised at the same time.

As the refugee crisis was triggered in Europe in 2015, EU member states have been left in utter disbelief with the problems that have followed the state of emergency. While the entry of immigrants into the countries of Europe have also incited a wave of extremist parties belonging to the right calling for their complete ban, from an ethical and moral standpoint this initiative and action are simply not justified. When homes continue to burn in Syria and the bodies of innocent children lie on the streets of Aleppo, the world cannot afford to watch in silence and let these innocent beings suffer because of something that is not their fault. Therefore, calling for a complete ban on refugees is out of the question. This raises the ultimate question of ‘who has the right to live in the ‘new’ Europe?’ and the answer to this as extensively discussed in this essay is that the right to live in Europe is possessed by its citizens and also refugees that have a documented status and the legal right to enter these states.

The legal right to enter these countries must be determined by the government and the concerned authorities that should weigh on various factors which will determine the extent to which candidates can successfully integrate within a society, for instance, assess their education, occupation and family background can offer a better insight into who they are and the potential that they have to become productive members of society. As shown in Auslander Raus, no one has the right to govern the lives of refugees and the general public cannot act as the ‘Big Brother’ in their attempt to scrutinise how they choose to lead their life and what they choose to do. Any measures to impose constant surveillance on migrant settlements and camps will only increase the sense of mistrust that they experience and will promote further hostility and animosity. For successful integration, it is imperative to accept the reality of asylum and accept that the current state of the world has led a scenario where this issue is something that cannot be ignored. Therefore, migration governance, asylum legislation and policy development are key areas to address when coping with the current scenario which is emerging across the globe.

Works Cited

Cabot, Heath. On the doorstep of Europe: asylum and citizenship in Greece. University of Pennsylvania Press, 2014.

Caviedes, Alexander. “European Integration and the Governance of Migration.” Journal of Contemporary European Research 12.1 (2016): 552-565.

Fassin, Didier. “The precarious truth of asylum.” Public Culture 25.1 69 (2013): 39-63.

Hanewald, Bernd, et al. “[Asylum Law and Mental Health: An Interdisciplinary Analysis of the Coaction of Medical and Legal Aspects].” Psychiatrische Praxis 43.3 (2016): 165-171.

Hansen, Randall. “Citizenship and integration in Europe.” Toward assimilation and citizenship: Immigrants in liberal nation-states. Palgrave Macmillan UK, 2014. 87-109.

Haslam, N. I. C. K., and A. N. N. E. Pedersen. “Attitudes towards asylum seekers: the psychology of exclusion.” Yearning to breathe free: Seeking asylum in Australia (2007): 208-218.

Louis, Winnifred R., et al. “Why do citizens want to keep refugees out? Threats, fairness and hostile norms in the treatment of asylum seekers.” European Journal of Social Psychology 37.1 (2007): 53-73.Leithold, D. (2015). Asylum in Europe. DICE Report13(4), 55.

McKay, Fiona H., Samantha L. Thomas, and Susan Kneebone. “‘It would be okay if they came through the proper channels’: Community perceptions and attitudes toward asylum seekers in Australia.” Journal of Refugee Studies 25.1 (2012): 113-133.

Price, Matthew E. Rethinking Asylum: History, Purpose, and Limits. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press, 2009. Print.

Rasmussen, Mary Lou, et al. “Sexuality, Gender, Citizenship and Social Justice: Education’s Queer Relations.” The Palgrave International Handbook of Education for Citizenship and Social Justice. Palgrave Macmillan UK, 2016. 73-96.

Schlingensief, Christoph. Foreigners Out!: Schlingensief’s Container, Chronicle of an Art Event. , n.d.

Trauner, Florian. “Asylum policy: the EU’s ‘crises’ and the looming policy regime failure.” Journal of European Integration 38.3 (2016): 311-325.

Volf, Miroslav. Exclusion & embrace: A theological exploration of identity, otherness, and reconciliation. Abingdon Press, 2010.

Watts, Meredith W. “Political Ideology in Germany.” Democracy, Socialization and Conflicting Loyalties in East and West: Cross-National and Comparative Perspectives (2016): 165.

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Feminist Movement

Feminist Movement

Introduction

In the beginning of the sixties, feminist movement emerged as a social movement which concentrates on dealing with issues related to women. It sought to tackle issues such as abortion, domestic violence, sexual assault, voting issues, violence against women, sexism, etc. it influenced all spheres of life and concentrated on removing sexism and male chauvinism from society. Similarly, it has influenced the field of arts, which was also dominated by males. According to researchers, dealers and curators mostly consisted of males and they preferred male artists. This trend had negatively influenced women artists and they were excluded from major art events and exhibitions. Consequently, they did not get the chance to get acknowledged for their work and skills. During the time of discrimination against women and in the such an environment, where women were not acknowledged for their work and skills along with male chauvinism, female artists expressed their views through art in order to deal with patriarchal society. According to scholars, feminist art is defined as the art which concentrates on tackling patriarchy and to define and pave way for social creation of feminism. Several feminist artists came into view to deal with male chauvinism. The aim and objective of this research article is to explore true feminism.

This article will concentrate on discussing feminism and feminism movement. It will provide an overview on what feminism is all about and how it influenced art. At the same time, it will concentrate on feminism art of the sixties. It will also explore feminism and feminism art in today’s time. The main aim of this research article is to explore the topic of true feminism art of the sixties and feminism art of the twenty first century in the lights of broad and diverse academic resources. This article will employ the use of various journals, books, encyclopedias, magazines and electronic resources to discuss the topic of feminism art of sixties and twentieth first centuries. It will concentrate on discussing the works of prominent feminist artists and the events, which gave rise to feminism movement.

Feminist Movement: Overview

The feminist movement is also called the Women’s liberation movement which sought to deal and tackle with issues such as abortion, maternity leave, harassment and violence against women, domestic violence, genital mutilation of females, honour killings, etc. Scholars and academic have divided feminist movements into three waves, which have dealt with several aspects of feminism but in a different way. The first wave feminist had initiated between the nineteen and twentieth centuries and it was mainly concerned with Suffrage movement. The second wave of feminism was the period between sixties and eighties in which feminists sought to deal with discrimination against women in society and law. It had the basic ideas of first wave feminism. The basic idea behind these movements was to struggle and to improve the conditions of women. According to researchers, feminism is defined as the continuous battle against the oppression and suppression of females. It was essential to initiate the feminist movement because women were subjugated at all levels in the Western society. The feminist movement aimed at removing this bias and concentrated on removing sexism from society so that women would also get a chance to develop their careers. It is one of the most influential and long lasting social movements which have influenced women in all spheres of life.

Feminism and Art

The feminist art is considered to be the hard work and achievements of feminists, who worked hard to use art as a medium to represent the lives and experiences of women so that they can bring change in society as well as in contemporary art. Feminism art main aim was to ensure that women become more visible in the history and practice of art.  The feminist movement started somewhere in the sixties and continued to develop in the seventies. Consequently, it gave rise to the notion “second wave of feminism”, which is persistent in today’s time. It was in the California State University of Fresno, where the first feminism art education program was started. The number of students was not more than fifteen and their instructor was Judy Chicago. She helped in the influencing the early feminism art and employed the use of costumer, video, performance in order to express feminism. In Los Angeles, Judy Chicago founded the art program. Together with Miriam Schapiro, they created Woman House in the early seventies. With the popularity of feminism movement, women emerged as separate and distinct individuals of society and started working with men. Artists such as Judy Chicago and Miriam Schapiro, Suzanne Lacy, Faith Wilding, June Wayne, Mary Kelly, Dara Birnbaum, etc emerged in the world of art and brought piece of art to represent feminism. In the seventies and eighties, the Women’s Building was considered to be the essential hub for feminist artist to gather and exchange views. In the same arena, conferences, conventions, workshops and exhibitions were held to discuss and promote feminist art. At the same time, Women’s Video Festival was introduced in order to promote feminist art.

Feminist Movement
Feminist Movement

Feminism History

According to researchers, feminism is considered to be theory which concentrates on political, economic and social equality of genders. As a social movement, it is considered to be the organized movement, which strives to work for women rights and interests. The history of feminism has been divided and classified by academics and researchers in three waves, first wave, second wave and third wave. The third wave feminism starts from nineteenth century to early twenty first century. The second wave starts from late sixties and late eighties. The third wave starts from nineties till recent times. The first wave feminism had started in the United Kingdom and United States. It concentrated on removing the inequalities which were officially mandated. Feminists of this time included Mary Wollstonecraft, Lucy Stone, Helen Pitts, Olympia Brown, etc.  According to researchers, the first wave ended when the U.S Constitution allowed the women to vote. It was considered to be big step for women. Other significant victories of this first wave included new reforms in education, healthcare and other professions. However, the second wave of feminism concentrates on the unofficial inequalities and it was important to tackle them. It created a link with issues, which had to be addressed in order to change the present situation of women. This wave allowed women to understand their lives personally and politically.

History of First Wave Feminism

In the 1800, women did not have any control in their life. During this time, an average married female was the mother of seven children. They could not get higher education. In wealthy families, women interfered in domestic issues but did not have any property rights. At the same time, religious restrictions also hindered with the growth and development of women. In the 1790, the Second Great Awakening had started which allowed women to show their leadership skills outside the domestic sphere. Several movements were started. Angelina and Sarah Grimke are considered to be famous and prominent abolitionists who had criticized and defied social customs. They publicly addressed the American Anti-Slavery Society and were severely criticized. In order to respond to criticism, Sarah Grimke wrote “Letters of Equality of the Sexes.”

First wave feminism is considered to be the era in which the feminism activities were started during the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. It started in United States and United Kingdom and aimed at removing gender discrimination. It concentrated on women’s suffrage because women were not allowed to vote during those times. From Miriam Schneir perspective, the first wave of feminism was the time when woman had taken her pen to protect herself from male chauvinism and gender discrimination. According to historians, Mary Wollstonecraft was the first female who had published the very first feminist treatises. The name of her treatises was, A Vindication of the Rights of Woman. In it, she expressed her views of current situation of women and supported the fact that there should be gender equality. In her uncompleted work, by the name of Maria or Wrongs of Woman, she had extensively discussed and explored the topic of sexual desires of women. It was criticized severely because it sought to talk on female sexuality. British feminists consider Wollstonecraft as the founder of British feminism. It was because of her ideas; feminists in Britain strived and campaigned for the right to vote. After continuous efforts, some women were given the privilege to vote in the year 1918. During the same time, Maria Stopes emerged and wrote a sex manual by the name of Married Love. The basic aim of this manual was to concentrate on the issue of equality in marriage. It also talked about female sexuality and its importance.

In the United States, Margaret Fuller was considered to be the pioneer of feminist work. She had written Woman in the Nineteenth Century. In United States, several prominent and well known feminist activists emerged. Active feminist movement members included women such as Lucy Stone, Susan B. Anthony, Elizabeth Cady Stanton, etc. these women were also the same individuals who made continuous efforts to remove slavery from the American society. Other prominent activist includes Victoria Woodhull and Matilda Gage, who worked hard to ensure that women get the right to vote. Several of these women had to face charges because of the fact that they had raised their voices. Carrie Chapman, Alice Paul, Sarah Grimke, etc are the name of some of the woman who violated the laws so that their voices could be heard. The first wave feminism consisted of women who belong from orthodox Christian groups. According to researchers, first-wave feminists are considered to be sensible and moderate and were ready to work within the system of politics.

According to researchers, the first wave of feminism was very different from second wave of feminism because of several issues. Firstly, it did not deal with social issues such as abortion, etc. They did not talk about the reproductive rights, which women have. According to researchers, feminists of that time did give views on marriage and asserted that woman has the right to refuse sex. However, marital rape had no legal recourse. During that time, feminists also talked on unwanted pregnancies and birth control pills. In the year 1860, Married Women’s Property Act was passed. It allowed women the authority and power to voice their opinions in the wills of their children. It also gave them inheritance laws. It was in the year 1920, when women were given the permission to vote. This was a major event and a big victory for feminists because it influenced the lives of women and gave the place for second wave feminist movement.

History of Second Wave Feminism

The second wave feminism movement is considered to be the feminist movement which took place from early sixties and continued to develop in the seventies. The first wave feminist movement concentrated mainly on the legal equality. However, second wave feminism concentrated on several social issues such as abortion, domestic violence, work discrimination against women, violence against women, reproductive rights of women, marital rape, etc.  This second wave of feminism emerged in the late forties in which patriarchal concepts emerged. Television shows such as Father knows Best, etc are the male chauvinist programs which concentrated on the fact that woman are best to be housewives and mothers.

The Second Sex has been written by Simone de Beauvoir. In her work, she explained that women were considered to be ‘other’ in the male dominated society. She came to the conclusion that male dominance has taken roots in the entire world and it is accepted as a norm. Women are viewed as objects and their work is to become pregnant, look after their children and menstruate and there is no valid justification to categorize them as the ‘second sex’.

According to Cynthia Fuchs Epstein, Betty Friedan had openly criticized and protested against the image of women, which was depicted in the media. Women were placed at homes, to do house-chores and take care of children. This image was publicized and hindered in the development and growth of women. It showed that women did not have talent. The concept of perfect family consisted of husband, who was the bread earner and the wife, as the home maker and caregiver of children. This concept did not show happiness but rather degraded women.

During this movement, President Kennedy had appointed Esther Peterson to occupy one a high post in his administration. He also founded the Presidential Commission on the Status of Women. Eleanor Roosevelt was the chairperson of the Commission. Betty Friedan released, Feminine Mystique in the year 1963. In the same year, President John F Kennedy administration released a report which demonstrated that women were subjected to severe and harsh discrimination in United States. With Friedan book and report, several housewives criticized and show discontent and dissatisfaction on the present condition of women. This led to the development and formation of several local and government feminist organizations, which concentrated on liberating women from male oppression and subjugation. This was the starting point of the movement.

The movement grew and prospered and won several legal cases. These achievements include Equal Pay Act of 1963, Amendments in the Civil Rights Act of 1964, etc. Friedan joined forces with several women and men to lay down the foundations for NOW: National Organization for Women. Other significant victories of the movement are as follows:

  • Formation of Executive Order
  • Women’s Educational Equity Act
  • Equal Credit Opportunity Act
  • Pregnancy Discrimination Act
  • Illegalization of marital rape
  • No-fault divorce legalization
  • Allowing women to enter the military

The above are some of the major achievements of the second wave feminism. The second wave of feminism assisted women to become aware of them and gave them the opportunity to look at their personal lives. According to researchers, the goal of the second wave feminism was to remove the negative images of the women and to create their positive images in order to respond to these negative images. At the same time, it concentrated on removing oppression.

Abortion Act of 1967

The Abortion Act of 1967 was introduced in the year 1967 by the Parliament of United Kingdom. It made abortion legal if practiced by registered and authorized practitioners. David Steel was responsible for introducing this Act. It was subjected to heavy criticism and became one of the most debatable and controversial subject of all times. However, it was passed on twenty seventh of October in the year 1967. David Steel supported this Act because there were several women who had died because of illegal abortion practices. At the same time, such unwanted children were sent to orphanages or were looked after by relatives. They were also sent abroad. The act ensured that abortion remained legal in the United   Kingdom. It ensured that abortion was legal up to twenty eight weeks of pregnancy.

Sisters of 77

Sisters of 77” is considered to be an important documentary which concentrated on giving insight on the history of women. It was shown on the first National Women’s Conference and sought to end the discrimination and oppression of women. It concentrated on removing gender inequality. This was the first conference which was funded by the federal government and it was brought by more than twenty thousand men and women.

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