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Women's Liberation Movement

             The twenty-year period between 1955-1975 can be looked at as the era of protest in United States history. Popular social protests were opposition to the Vietnam war and the civil rights movements protests, which was exemplified by the struggle for black equality. Though, both of these reasons were significant they were not the only reasons US citizens conducted protests. Other reasons for protests included the women's liberation, gay liberation, and the environmental movement. All three of these reasons were significant and have had influential impact on modern day life.
             The Women's Liberation Movement (WLM) exploded into existence in the late 1960's in America after a period of relative inactivity in feminism during the 1950's. It was a movement', not an organization and consisted of numerous women's groups, all campaigning for different feminist goals. It is said that WLM grew out of the civil rights movement. It is also said that the book Feminine Mystique, written by Betty Friedan, cofounder of NOW, also played a role in the establishment of the WLM. The three main trends within the WLM were socialist feminism, liberal feminism and radical feminism; each saw women's problems in a different light and stressed different solutions. Socialist feminism saw women's problem as being a combination of male domination and class exploitation and viewed the end of capitalism as the way to achieve gender equality. Liberal feminism concentrated on equal rights and attempted to bring about change in legislation and government policy. Lastly, Radical feminism saw the system of male dominance over women (patriarchy) as women's problem. Campaigns against pornography and male violence, was viewed as the way for change. .
             One of the different women's groups was the National Organization for Women (NOW), which helped symbolize liberal feminism. Formed in 1966, NOW promoted its pledge, "to take action to bring women into full participation in the mainstream of American society now- (Farragher).

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