Declaration of Sentiments: Blog Response
After 156 years, you would think that the issues brought up in the Declaration of Sentiments would have been resolved by this day, but unfortunately that is not the case. Since the dawn of capitalism, developing around the same time period the Declaration was written, it has become one of the most powerful (if not THE most powerful) economic structures in the world. It is no coincidence that this structure has become increasingly dependent on the destruction of women’s self-image, self-respect, and self-worth in order to sell more products. In the Declaration of Sentiments, one of the grievances listed recounts men’s continuing dominance over women’s self- respect. It reads as follows:
“[Man] has endeavored, in every way that he could to destroy her confidence in her own powers, to lessen her self-respect, and to make her willing to lead a dependent and abject life.”
It’s heartbreaking to see that this issue is still so pervasive today. It is not a learned behavior to hate one’s own appearance, hate one’s own size, and to feel as though there is a rigid sphere in which a person should inhabit. All of these self-worth issues have repeatedly been projected at women by men for years-- whether it be through religious standards, social norms, or in this case, through profit. This method is much more insidious and less blatant than the traditional concept of men literally exerting physical dominance over women. In fact, the destruction of women’s self-worth via modern capitalism is so normal that it goes completely unnoticed. It’s because of subtleties like this that some people believe that sexism is no longer a problem. However, many people don’t seem to give any thought to the fact that women aren’t born believing that they are not pretty enough, not the right size, and that there are only a set amount of career options for them. Around age seven, a roughly equal number of boys...
Bibliography: Cogdon, Jessica, Claire Dietrich, and Jenny Raskin. Miss Representation. Prod. Jennifer S. Newsom. 22 Jan. 2011. Television.
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