Charlotte Perkins Gilman, Ida B. Wells Barnett and the Fight for Fairness and Equality for Undocumented Immigrants

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Charlotte Perkins Gilman, Ida B. Wells Barnett and the Fight for Fairness and Equality for Undocumented Immigrants Kristin Fine The women founders of sociological theory made it possible for women and members of other marginalized communities to gain access to the rights and privileges their white male counterparts enjoyed for centuries. In particular, the incredible lives of Charlotte Perkins Gilman and Ida B. Wells-Barnett allowed new avenues of academia and social change that had not previously been conceivable. Although they used different approaches and their theories focused on different aspects of the society in which they lived, a common thread ties them together in the history of feminist thinkers: their passion for social and…show more content…
Barnett advocated self-help activities, but she also fought against Jim Crow facilities with economic boycotts and was not above armed resistance”.5 The focus of Wells-Barnett on the subordination of women was unique in that it looked at the problem not only through the lens of sex, but of race, class and geographic location. Undocumented immigration, commonly known as “illegal immigration”, is a hot button topic in American politics today. In the last ten years candidates for political office, political parties and interests groups have used this issue to gain support for their cause, resulting in a heated ongoing debate that affects the estimated 20 million undocumented immigrants that live and work in the United States today. What has become lost in the majority of these discussions is the diminished quality of life these immigrants are forced to endure due to failed social policy of US lawmakers, as well as the many positive contributions immigrants from all countries have on the economy and culture of the United States. Advocates for undocumented immigrants are faced with similar challenges faced by Charlotte Perkins Gilman and Ida B. Wells-Barnett. Both women fought for equality for those who did not have equal status in society and in the institutions that make up American government. The application of their theories to the

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