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The Changing Role of Women in the United States
Women's History Month (LOC)
Living the Legacy: the Women's Rights Movement, 1848 - 1998
· Outline of American History
· U.S. Dept. of Labor. Women's Bureau
· White House > Issues > Women
· Women in American History
· Women of Influence
· Women Pioneers in American Memory
· Women's History Month

Original Documents
· 19th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution: Women's Right to Vote (1920)
· The Declaration of Sentiments from the Seneca Falls Convention, 1848
· Gifts of Speech: Women's Speeches
· In Her Own Words
· Presidential Proclamation - Women's Equality Day 2010
· Presidential Proclamation - Women's History Month 2010
· Sojourner Truth's Speech to the Akron Convention, 1851
· Women and Social Movements in the U.S., 1775 -2000


· Facts for Features: Women's History Month 2010 
· Highlights of Women's Earnings 2006
Statistical Abstracts of the United States
· We, the American Women - 1990
· We, the People: Women and Men in the U.S.
· Women in the Labor Force. A Databook

Women in the United States: A Profile. 2000


Women's Rights Movement: Living the Legacy

Although American women won the right to vote in 1920, broader economic and social change has been a longer time coming, and the pace of progress has often been uneven.
In the United States during the 1960s, there began a period of substantial social change; in women's issues, the result was a phenomenon known as the women's movement. Influenced by the success of the civil rights movement for racial equality and other progressive currents sweeping the nation during the 1960s and 1970s, a wide array of organizations and lobbying groups urged full equality for American women as well. The call was not only for a fundamental revision of American institutions, customs and values, but also for a revolution in consciousness -- in the minds of women as well as men -- and especially in the way women thought about themselves. Not everyone welcomed the resulting changes, as evidenced by the formation of a number of organizations intent on countering what they viewed as unrestrained feminism.
But whatever the perspective, there can be no doubt the changes have been telling. American women are living very different lives today than they did in the 1950s and earlier. (The Changing Role of Women in the United States. U.S. Department of State, IIP Electronic Journal)

Feature Articles

Women and the Economy 2010: 25 Years of Progres but Challenges Remain
U.S. Congress Joint Economic Committee. August 2010.
On August 26, 2010, Americans will celebrate the 90th anniversary of the ratification of the 19th amendment, which granted women the right to vote and led to their increased participation in our political system. In 1984, Geraldine Ferraro shattered the political glass ceiling by becoming the first woman nominated to a national ticket and ushered in a new era of political leadership for
women. Over the last quarter century, women have become a powerful political force, both as voters and as elected leaders. Did that political benchmark have implications for women’s economic well-being? Data compiled by the Joint Economic Committee suggest that the answer is yes.

AP image
Cathy L. Lanier is Washington's first permanent female police chief.
(© AP Images)

U.S. Women Making Strides in Education, Entrepreneurship
A demographic profile of women in the United States
American women -- 152 million or 51 percent of the U.S. population -- increasingly are making their influence felt in all spheres of American life. And the month of March -- National Women's History Month -- is a fitting time to measure the progress women are making in American society.
Recognizing that education is their ticket to economic success, women now graduate high school at rates higher than those of men -- 87 percent for women; 85 percent for men. In the age range of 25 to 29 years, 32 percent of women compared to 25 percent of men obtained bachelor's degrees or higher in 2005. On the other hand, a higher proportion of males in the general population had a bachelor's degree or higher (28.9 percent compared with 26.5 percent of women). (, 25 March 2008.)

Women's History, Accomplishments Celebrated Every March
2008 Women's History Month theme is Women's Art: Women's Vision
In 1981, the U.S. Congress passed a resolution establishing National Women's History Week. In 1987, Congress expanded the week to a month, and has since passed such a resolution every year. Congressional action is followed by a U.S. presidential proclamation declaring March as Women's History Month.
(, 29 February 2008.)

National Museum of Women in the Arts Celebrates 20 Years

Anniversary exhibition focuses on women Renaissance, Baroque pioneers
Throughout its existence, the National Museum of Women in the Arts (NMWA) has been called on to justify its mission in a way that 'other established museums don't have to, 'says Jordana Pomeroy, co-curator of the NMWA's new exhibition, 'Italian Women Artists from Renaissance to Baroque.'
As the world's only museum dedicated solely to the works of women artists, the NMWA is accustomed to critics who question the need for such a facility and who insist that art should not be viewed through the prism of an artist's gender. But in interviews, both Pomeroy and the NMWA's director of communications, Howard White, said the museum is needed. (, 28 March 2007.)

Featured Publications
Women of Influence

Women of Influence
This publication offers a glimpse at how women in one country the United States have helped shape their society. These notable women from the Native-American Sacagawea, who guided white settlers through a vast wilderness, to Sojourner Truth, who fought for the end of slavery and equal rights for all; to Rosalyn Yalow, winner of the Nobel Prize in Medicine for her research into a new technique for measuring substances in the blood believed that they had a contribution to make and did not shrink from the obstacles in their way. This account of their accomplishments is a reminder that all societies benefit from the talents and expertise of their women.

Making a Difference in the U.S.A - Women in Politics (March 2008) (PDF file, 1.44MB)
This publication offers the stories of women who believed that they could make a difference by participating in politics and government, and forged ahead to do so. They are not famous, like U.S. presidential candidate Hillary Clinton, and they are not serving at the top, like Presidents Michelle Bachelet of Chile or Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf in Liberia. But, just like Bachelet, Clinton, and Johnson-Sirleaf, they have overcome obstacles to get where they are. They have acquired experience in running for election, being an effective policy-maker, and in persuading elected officials to support their cause.

Exhibits - Digital Images
· Agents of Social Change: Online Exhibit
· First Ladies' Gallery
· National Museum of Women in the Arts
· National Museum of Women's History
· National Women's Hall of Fame
· National Women's History Project
· Not For Ourselves Alone: The Story of Elizabeth Stanton and Susan B. Anthony
· Places Where Women Made History
· Votes for Women: 1850 -1920
· Women of Our Time: 20th Century Photographs
· Women's History
· Women's Rights National Historic Park, Seneca Falls, NY

For Students

· The Contributions of Women
· Meet Amazing Americans
· Securing the Right to Vote
· The Story of Susan B. Anthony and Elizabeth Cody Stanton
· Women of the Century
· Women Who Changed History
· Women's History Resources  

Teacher Resources
The Changing Ideal
· Celebrate Womens History Month (NYT Learning Network)
Cultural Change. Lesson Plan.
Eleanor Roosevelt
Exploring Women's History
Mother's Nature.An Exploration of the Million Mom March and Other Women's Movements
· Smithsonian: Women's History Month
Teaching With Documents: Woman Suffrage and the 19th Amendment
U.S. Women History. Lesson Plan Ideas
· Women in American History
· Women's History Lesson Plans
· Women's History Month
· Women's History Month. Free Resources
· Women's Studies Database: Syllabi

Links Lists
American Women. A Gateway to LOC Resources
· American Women's History. A Research Guide
· A Celebration of Women Writers
· Librarian's Guide to the Internet: Women
Links to the News: Women's History Month
Multimedia Sites in Women's History
· Women's History: Learning & Teaching Resources
· Women's History Resource Links
· Women's History Resources
· Women's History on the Web
· Women's History Teaching Links
· Women's Studies
· Women's Studies Section

Texts are abridged from U.S. State Department IIP publications and other U.S. government materials.
Any reference obtained from this server to a specific commercial product, process, or service does not constitute or imply an endorsement by the United States Government of the product, process, or service, or its producer or provider. The views and opinions expressed in any referenced document do not necessarily state or reflect those of the United States Government.
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Updated: September 2010