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New Woman

            Suffrage gave rise to the "New Woman." The "New Woman" was "young, well educated, probably a college graduate, independent of spirit, highly competent, and physically strong and fearless." The battle for suffrage was a long, hard, uphill journey that took over 60 years to obtain. Suffrage occurred in three different phases in conjunction with the three different generations following the Civil War; each possessed different views concerning marriage and family and professionalism. The "New Woman" fully emerged with the third generation in the early twentieth century, due to the political, and social reform efforts of the previous two generations, which the third continued.1.
             The "advancement of women" was a phrase intended to be vague enough to include all women and their respective ambitions. It was not a term used to imply equality between the sexes, but rather included topics such as higher education and financial independence for women. This movement was a result of expanding possibilities for women in a changing world. Urbanization was on the rise and with it many new conveniences for women to experience on the streets. Department stores were considered part of the woman's realm and were able to be made the most of through the better public transportation systems. Night travel was also made possible through the invention of streetlights. All of this gave women freedom of mobility about the city and lessened their dependence on men. 1.
             The ladies of this generation, the first, used their newfound freedom and belief in the advancement of women to pave the way for the second generation, "many older women were prepared to organize, petition, and fund-raise to give the younger generation of women the opportunities they had not had themselves." This was accomplished most directly through education and the formation of women's clubs. The 1880s saw a new type of female, thanks to the efforts of the previous generation.

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