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Women in the 16th century

            Virginia Woolf has been recognized as one of the most important and influential feminist writer’s in the twentieth century. In her book, A Room of One’s Own, she discusses many views on women in the sixteenth century. She says that women have served all these centuries as looking glasses possessing the magic and delicious power of reflecting the figure of man a twice its natural size. Throughout history women have been portrayed in a variety of ways. Such reformers in the sixteenth century as John Calvin, Titian, and Ulrich Zwingli have posed a certain attitude towards women. Women have been held in lesser esteem throughout the centuries because they have been expected to enhance the image of men.
             In the sixteenth century, John Calvin, a humanist, who wrote and believed in predestination, thought women, belonged in the kitchen and their body was for a man’s pleasure only. Also, he said that women were obligated to have sex with their husband. Ulrich Zwingli had a similar view on women. He said that wife’s had to be subservient and obedient, loving mothers. Women were treated in a way like servants to their husband. An artist named Titian, portrayed women as “thick”, because he wanted to show that they were capable of having children. This was his main view on women.
             Since the sixteenth century, women have come a long way. Today, women have many rights. A women’s rights movement that was established helped produce the same social, economic, and political status for women as for men. It also guaranteed that women would not face discrimination on the basis of their sex. This movement did a great deal for women and their rights. Women are now able to vote, have abortions, and basically do anything any man can do. Although, women continue to be treated unfairly, they are making progress towards the future. Hopefully, women will be treated as one and have the same equality as a man.