My mother lived through the second wave of feminism that occurred during the 1960's and 70's. Feminists of this time brought on a social movement that made great and promising accomplishments for equality and women's rights. The Civil Rights Act of 1964 banned discrimination because of race, nationality, religion or sex. This enforced a change in the way American's viewed women. A few years later the birth control pill was legalized thus spawning the "sexual revolution" and of course the still controversial United States Supreme Court Ruling of Roe v. Wade which determined that women have the right to terminate a first trimester pregnancy.
Although the 1960's and 70's were rewarding for the feminist movement a backlash occurred during the 1980's as a result of the revolutionary changes during the previous two decades. Feminists had fought against the belief's that women were subservient to men. They had instilled new philosophies and ideas to change the traditional American nuclear family assumption that women stay at home as caregivers.
The feminist work of the 1960's and 70's successfully changed American popular culture.
During the 1980's, the decade my mother gave birth to her three children, Americans opposed the reforms of the 1960's and 70's. Although the traditional 1950's style nuclear home had been broken and women were entering the workforce in record numbers we continued to live in a predominantly patriarchal society. Men predominantly ran our government and held the prominent positions of authority in most businesses and government. During the conservatism of the Reagan administration more emphasis was put on family values. The media began to institutionalize the war of the mothers. Feminism suffered a shattering setback because of this media generated war. At this time my mother was a young college graduate and new stay at home mom. She...