The Argument For Voluntary Motherhood

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This question got people thinking. Around the 1870’s a campaign began called “voluntary motherhood” which was a program suggesting that married couples should resist sexual activity for long periods of time to keep from having unwanted children. Some feminists during this time were pushing the campaign of “Voluntary Motherhood”. “Contesting” against the conservative party and their extreme beliefs became one of the most “powerful feminist movements”. The main problem was really that women did not always want to be mothers. Despite contrary belief, some women had no desire to bear children. Thus, the feminists argued “Voluntary Motherhood” and claimed it as their main slogan. This simply means that women who actually desire to be mothers…show more content…
Really, this issue throughout most of its stages is nothing more than a conflict between social radicals and social conservatives. People seemed to be so frightened by the fact that women no longer wanted to be completely submissive to men and therefore continuing to birth numerous children, that they automatically assumed that women just wanted to run around and be promiscuous(Tone 148). One of the earliest waves of this movement began in 1870 ,which Tone describes as the “Victorian sexual system”(Tone 148). During this time, people of strong morale stated that the purpose of sexual “activity” for women is solely for reproduction. Many people could not believe that women would ever have any type of sexual desire that was unrelated to the desire to be a mother(Tone 148). And for those who did believe that women might have some sort of “sex drive”, they believed that it was directly related to the duty to satisfy their husbands(Tone148). Of course, men were one hundred percent entitled to having strong sexual desires and were in no way patronized for that. In fact, many married men would find sexual pleasure outside of their marriages, with prostitutes and otherwise promiscuous ladies. Within the churches, preaches spoke of how women with sexual desires were “unwomanly” and that their only true desire should be that of domesticity and maternity. “Many forces to be mentioned later, were clearly at work in curbing fertility, but the power
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