This week you read about the women’s suffrage movement and the Equal Rights Amendment (ERA), two major efforts to establish equal rights for women in the United States. In your discussion post, address the following:
- Choose a sentence or short section from the article embedded in your webtext reading about the women’s suffrage movement. Quote the sentence or section in your post. Along with this sentence or section, briefly explain how your choice illustrates the concept of historical causality.
- In one or two sentences, summarize the author’s thesis statement about the ERA. To support your answer, quote one or two sentences from the article that convey the author’s central point.
Respond to your peers by comparing one of their selections to your own. Reflect on the similarities and differences between the conclusions you each made based on the evidence you selected.
Post 1: On September 30, 1918, President Woodrow Wilson gives a speech before Congress in support of guaranteeing women the right to vote. Although the House of Representatives had approved a 19th constitutional amendment giving women suffrage, the Senate had yet to vote on the measure. One important part of that effort was the campaign for women suffrage, the women won the right to vote after 70 years of campaigning suffrage which later became the National Womanâ€™s Party. The women found that they had a right to vote, women saw the Nineteenth Amendment ratified in 1920â€”but why was this Amendment finally approved? On May 21, 1919, U.S. Representative James R. Mann, a Republican from Illinois and chairman of the Suffrage Committee, proposed the House resolution to approve the Susan Anthony Amendment granting women the right to vote. The measure passed the House 304 to 89â€”a full 42 votes above the required two-thirds majority. Two weeks later, on June 4, 1919, the U.S. Senate passed the 19th Amendment by two votes over its two-thirds required majority, 56-25. The amendment was then sent to the states for ratification.
Post 2: This section from the journal article that caught my attention and seems to describe a point of historical causality about the womenâ€™s suffrage movement. â€œPassage of the womenâ€™s suffrage and national prohibition amendments required prolonged effort, but both were achieved in the immediate aftermath of World War I. They were two extraordinary achievements of national political consensus at the time, a fact obscured by the shift in attitudes toward prohibition that led to its even more remarkable repeal fourteen years later. As a result of the adoption and implementation of the Eighteenth and Nineteenth Amendments, the sense that constitutional amendment could effect social change rooted itself deeply in feminist political consciousness (Kyvig, 1996)â€. Society and social ideals, malleable by executed amendments, is direct historical causality. Due to the passing of these amendments, society accepts them over time and thus changes the perspective of society. Therefore, the modification occurs on account of a historical event. The authorâ€™s main argument is that history is more than just the past and there are lessons in history to be learned from. To have an understanding of the past is to interpret events and facts and apply that knowledge to today. Relative to the authorâ€™s point, this part of the article stood out to me. â€œKeeping the ERA example in mind, combatants in public policy battles would do well to learn more history, develop skills of historical reasoning and critical analysis, and see the counsel of specialists in the pertinent past (Kyvig, 1996)â€.