Shirley Chisholm Women's Rights Speech Analysis

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Shirley Chisholm, in her address to Congress on May 21, 1969, advocated for women’s rights in juxtaposition to African American’s rights - both predominant issues at the time, because she believed women, unlike African Americans, would continue to be discriminated against and denied equal rights even after racial inequality was adequately addressed, a topic she felt passionately about. To explain, in her speech, Chisholm reflects upon the fact that although prejudice against African Americans is still a point of controversy among American society, it is slowly beginning to recede and become resolved as people express their stance on racial equality and commensurateness. On the other hand, preconceptions and enmity towards women is still socially…show more content…
7-8) The fact that women have not openly protested for their rights, and have often been submissive to prejudice and discrimination illustrates why Chisholm takes a stand for women instead of African American. She believes that though race relations in America had begun to improve, women would always be overlooked and thought of as incapable and inferior due to their position in society. As an African American woman, she is an embodiment of a strong, determined, and passionate woman who believes in equality for all, not just the agglomerate of whites and men at the time. All in all, as aforementioned, Shirley Chisholm may have made the choice to stand up for women’s rights instead of African American rights because she believed that women, unlike African Americans who would soon reach racial equality as America faces the issues that arise from segregation and discrimination, would continuously be classified in a position subordinate to men and society unless women spoke out for the rights they believed all Americans
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