Harriet Tubman Impact On Women

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Their experiences with slavery helped black women to redefine womanhood. Harriet Tubman, a leader in the Underground Railroad and a strong female role model, successfully crossed the Mason-Dixon line into freedom in 1849. After Tubman arrived in Pennsylvania, she decided that she had no right to freedom while others were in bondage and resolved to bring her family North. When she arrived at her former master’s plantation, she discovered that her husband had taken another wife and devoted herself to the cause of the Underground Railroad. The independence and leadership she demonstrated was contrary to the view of women at the time. Ironically, most women of the 19th century did not have the same freedom as Tubman did. Married women, bound to…show more content…
In her situation, running away showed more courage and strength of character than demanding freedom. Also significant is the name of Moses itself. Moses is typically used for a man, not a women so adopting this nickname allowed Tubman to showcase traits thought to be masculine. This suggests the attitude toward women at the time. Harriet’s example, while not directly tied to the suffrage movement, indirectly contributed to it by expanding the view of what women could achieve. Sojourner Truth’s Ain’t I a Woman speech challenged men to view women in a different way. Truth proved that feminine qualities are not dependent on the type of labor performed. Sojourner’s labor in the fields contrasted greatly with the role of the Southern Belle. Women of the Deep South were expected to be fragile and dainty, not darkening their skin in the hot sun and developing calluses. This type of labor would have been considered unladylike. They raised their children, supported their husbands and submitted to their God. Yet Sojourner birthed thirteen children, twice as many as the average Southern
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