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Feminist Contributions to Understanding Women’s Lives Essay (Critical Writing)

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Updated: Jun 17th, 2022

Feminism is a term that has been in the headlines for many decades. Swigonski and Raheim (2011) have explored how it has contributed to women’s lives and the social environment. The feminist claim is that women are as valuable as men, which has significantly impacted social work theory and practice even in mostly paternalistic and patriarchal societies. Although this kind of theorizing has attracted many views from different quarters, this assertion has significantly influenced how social workers understand women’s lives and how this understanding dictates the interaction with the environment.

In a world dominated by the male population, the women’s strides in empowering themselves are quite commendable. The most important factors that have resulted from feminist efforts include diversity, power, difference, gender, and care, which have been addressed differently in the three waves of feminism. Of these, the first one is the most crucial; it started when women began to fight for their rights, for instance, the right to vote. The pioneers of feminism not only cared for women’s well-being but we’re also committed to national progress. They were fighting to engage in matters of national interest. Therefore, feminism has come a long way, and the first wave marked the beginning of a largely fruitful journey.

The second wave’s approach was based on the assertion that women’s lives matter. Much of the efforts are aimed at reclaiming women’s control over their bodies, eliminating patriarchy, and condemning violence against women. However, these standards created a misunderstanding between men and women because they ignored the significance of the natural differences between the two genders. The third wave majorly discredits the second one based on plurality, perfection, and power. Thus, this last phase is a better approach than its predecessors because it is multifocal, nonjudgmental, and inclusive.

The last wave redefined feminism and gave it a completely new turn, taking into account the flaws of the second one. This gave women a clear picture of the daily realities in their lives. Although not all women hold the same views or target similar goals, they indeed matter. There were some differences in each wave’s approaches, but one constant aspect is that they all aimed to deconstruct oppressive systems against women. The success of feminism is evident at all levels of human interaction since there is a better understanding of women and their lives.

Reference

Swigonski, M. E., & Raheim, S. (2011). . Affilia, 26(1), 10-21.

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IvyPanda. 2022. "Feminist Contributions to Understanding Women’s Lives." June 17, 2022. https://ivypanda.com/essays/feminist-contributions-to-understanding-womens-lives/.

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IvyPanda. (2022) 'Feminist Contributions to Understanding Women’s Lives'. 17 June.

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