Maria Eugenia Echenique was an Argentine feminist and fiercely fought for women’s rights in her country. She was a strong, eloquent woman who did her best to promote the ideas of emancipation of women and defended this process. This topic was important for Echenique because it directly concerned her life and her role in society. She believed that she deserved proper treatment, so she was worried about people’s reaction to the emancipation of women.
The global central conflict was the adverse reaction of society to the phenomenon of women’s emancipation and a discussion about whether a woman can fully enjoy the rights granted to her. Echenique claimed that “far from causing the breakdown of the social classes, the emancipation of women would establish morality and justice in them” (Echenique). Echenique tried to convince people that an educated woman would cope with any duties much more effectively.
Despite the bright and exciting speech, the author did not offer any specific solution to this conflict. However, to change the views that have been formed over the years, it would take a lot of time and careful, gradual changes to not cause an adverse reaction. For example, I would propose expanding the list of professions for women, distributing literature authored by women, and setting penalties for inappropriate behavior towards women. I would direct all my efforts to destroying stereotypes concerning women and their responsibilities.
I think that Lysander Spooner, an opponent of any slavery and a supporter of individualistic anarchism, would approve of such solutions to women’s emancipation. He advocated the triumph of the individual over any external circumstances, such as society, groups, traditions, and ideological systems. I think he would have supported women seeking social and economic independence since he believed that only a person has the right to govern himself.
Women’s lives have changed a lot thanks to the efforts of feminists. Women now have the right to personal inviolability, the right to vote, and the right to elect public positions. Modern women have the right to a fair salary, property rights, and education. The economic, social, and religious rights of modern women have greatly expanded. Unfortunately, there are still countries where laws greatly curtail women’s rights, forming a solid dependence on men or families. Nevertheless, the situation of modern women is strikingly different from what it was before, and this is also due to Maria Eugenia Echenique.
Echenique, Maria. “The Emancipation of Women (1876)”. Washington State University, brians. Web.