Social Reforms of 1960's

Essay by ismail January 2006

download word file, 5 pages 4.0

The decade of 1960's faces significance in the social history of the United States. Number of various raising national problems and the exhaustion of "never ending" Vietnam War formed a vast social chaos. Every social layer faced a certain hurdle of the time based on ethnic, racial and gender discrimination, lack of education and a miserable poverty. A number of civil reforms were presented to address these issues. Various different reforms of 1960's had impact to structure a greater society; legacies concerning women rights, integration of African-American rights and improvement of education are great examples describing the vast social movement of the 1960's.

Since the layers of the society were settled, women were carrying a burden based on their gender. Secondary place in the social life was never pleasing but was always assumed as inevitability. After the Second World War the standard of the woman as a perfect wife and a housekeeper closed her into a narrow suburban life, leaving without any possibility of career and other self realization.

Learning from the intensive protests of the black society, women started their way towards freedom and recognition. As the issue of the limited suburban life aroused, Betty Friedan, the author of the immensely influential book "The Feminine Mystique", took over the movement of feminism. Describing woman's life as a "comfortable concentration camp" she suffered from a blissful domesticity. In fact, Betty Friedan discovered that far more women were working outside the home than she defined in her bestseller of the 1960's. Unfortunately, many of them faced frustration of long time restless jobs and discrimination upon the underpaid work. Headed be Betty Friedan's leadership, a group of determined women formed a National Organization for Women, which would stand for women's support. Apparently, this women's message to the society was very...