Ida B. Wells (1862-1931): A Passion for Justice (1989) After the Civil War – 4 million freed slaves The right to marry, raise children, own property, be protected by law 2 years later, Black me got the right to vote Ida Wells was born in 1862 in Mississippi Father wasContinue Reading

“Women’s Cause is One and Universal” by Anna Julia Cooper (1893) The best that civilization has to offer can’t be improvised or developed overnight. It takes generations The history of black women’s struggles is heroic, against the odds & largely unwritten Mothers suffered for their children & fought as hardContinue Reading

“Ain’t I a Woman?” by Sojourner Truth (1851) There’s a lot of talk about blacks in the South & women in the North pushing for rights, so much so that white men are worried Some men say women need to be carried into carriages & over ditches but nobody ever didContinue Reading

“An Appeal to Congress for Impartial Suffrage” by Frederick Douglass (1867) Impartial suffrage is supported by the nature of man & the needs of society Inferred from nature as direct & self-evident, like his right to acquire property & education It’s a crime that he can’t share in making &Continue Reading

“Constitutional Argument: Speech After Being Convicted for Voting in the 1872 Presidential Election” by Susan B. Anthony 1872. I’m being charges with the crime of voting in the last election without having the right to It wasn’t a crime but an exercise of my rights guaranteed to all citizens byContinue Reading

“Why I Became a ‘Woman’s Rights Man’” by Frederick Douglass (1892) Anti-slavery’s history will show, once it’s been written that women were the biggest proponents of abolition They were the biggest spiritual force against slavery They’ve proven themselves to be skilled, patient & perseverant, especially when things get tough TheyContinue Reading

“The Solitude of Self” by Elizabeth Cady Stanton (1851) Individuality of the human soul Protestant idea – right of individual conscience & judgment Republican idea – individual citizenship Whatever belongs to an individual woman is hers alone, as if on an island To use all faculties for her safety &Continue Reading

“Our Costume” by Elizabeth Cady Stanton (1851) Let women stay in their cocoons until they’re ready to come out & fly Leaving behind petticoats, etc. & just deal with all the jokes, mean words & disapproving looks The dress makes women look like dolls on velvet couches Like people withContinue Reading

“Marriage Protest” by Lucy Stone & Henry Blackwell (1855) We urge others to protest laws about marriage that give the husband unfair powers, including: Custody over the wife’s person Exclusive control & custody over their children Sole ownership of her personal property & real estate Rights to the fruits ofContinue Reading

“Declaration of Sentiments” by Elizabeth Cady Stanton (1848) [Mirroring the language of the Declaration of Independence] We’re at a time where we’ve got to start questioning if it’s right that half the population speak up & change its role Natural rights & God’s will require it Men & women areContinue Reading

“The Anti-Slavery Movement and the Birth of Women’s Rights.” Chapter 2 in Women, Race and Class by Angela Davis (1983) Frederick Douglass credits women with being one of the largest proponents of the abolition of slavery He was also a prominent women’s rights advocates This led to much ridicule WomenContinue Reading

“The Cult of True Womanhood” by Jeanne Boydston 19th century women were seen to be shaped by a cult of true womanhood associating being a woman with home & family Kept from “dirty” influence of business & public affairs Serene moral influences over husband & children Women seen as unfitContinue Reading