Sojourner Truth's seminal speech, "Ain't I A Woman?" drew attention to the disparity between how womanhood was defined for white and black women of this era. Her speech at once challenges the treatment of women under the system of slavery and also affirms that women are capable of being strong without a man's protection.
The Cult of Domesticity and the Politics of Packaging
Analyze these Temperance Movement political posters and photographs. What do these images suggest about the role of women in society?
This is a political cartoon which reflects attitudes about women during the era. What message do you think was prevalent about women at the time?
How did the perception of women affect the willingness of the populous to grant voting rights to women?
Do you think that this is a pro or anti suffrage message?
This poster invokes the respected role of a woman as a wife and mother. Do you think that viewing this poster would have swayed a male viewer toward the approval of suffrage? Why or why not?
Why do you think that this particular image was chosen?
Amelia Bloomer - Interim Archives/Getty Images
Look at these changes of fashion in the 1800s. What impact might they have had on a woman's ability to move freely? How do the changes in fashion line up with the suffrage movement?
Clothing worn by women in the early 1800s
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Amelia Bloomer is best known for promoting a style of dress which seemed at best outlandish to many of the people of her day, and at worst subversive and dangerous. This outfit, while quite tame to us now, seemed tantamount to cross-dressing to many of her contemporaries. Consider what impact the promotion of bloomers may have had on the suffrage movement.