Essay Test 2
By Cody Ward
This essay argues that the attitudes toward sexuality were greatly varied between average people and activists between 1900 and 1960. The people in the 1960s had were much more sexually liberated than those in the earlier part of the century. (Peiss, Sexual Revolutions, p.405) The 1960s brought about a time when sex be came a more common place topic, and people where able to plan their families more easily.
In the early part of the 1900s women became under scrutiny for their sexual practices. Many American women, as well as immigrants, were entering into prostitution in order to make ends meet. They received higher financial rewards as prostitutes than they ...view middle of the document...
(Peiss, The Politics of Reproduction, p.308)
Sanger believed that sexual education was important for many reasons. She spoke of a hospitals findings that 75 percent of the diseases in men and women came from their lack of knowledge of sexual functions, and could be prevented with the proper knowledge. She said that America has the highest number of abortions in the world. She found that three hundred babies under one year of age die from poverty and neglect, and that six hundred thousand parents did not have the knowledge to prevent having more children. (Peiss, Margaret Sanger Argues “The Case for Birth Control,” 1917, p. 312)
In the 1920s and 1930s women in Baltimore began to go the Baltimore Committee on Contraceptive Advice to seek aid in receiving and learning about birth control. Of the women that visited 82 percent of them where white, and only 17 percent were of color. At the time of the findings only 14 percent of the Baltimore population was of color. This showed that the beliefs that people who were economically less fortunate would in fact use birth control. Most of the women that cam were married, around the age of 30, and had already experienced five or six pregnancies.(Peiss, Women’s Use of a Baltimore Birth Control Clinic, 1929, p. 319)
Forced sterilization of epileptics and feeble minded people were laws that continued to be upheld. It was believed that if the feeble minded continued to breed they would pass their insanity on to their children. Like in the case of Carrie Buck who was considered to be a feeble minded person and she was the daughter of a feeble minded person. It was argued for her forced sterilization. (Peiss, Women Write Margaret Sanger for Birth Control, p. 317)
By the 1950s the public opinion changed and sex was a...