Essay On Sexism In The Civil War

Words: 1454
Pages: 6

In American History, women have faced countless circumstances of sexism and hardships as they worked to develop their role in society. A prime example of such sexism women fought against were the adversities the Civil War brought about. The maternal instincts of women should have made females the obvious first choice for nurses in the war, but this was not the case. Instead, females who offered their services were met with sexist men who believed women were not capable of fulfilling the job as a healthcare provider. Women's strength and bravery served them well in the Civil War as they were put up against unimaginable difficulties. The hHardships women were forced to endure were horrifying and unlike anything women of the time had encountered. Despite all the controversy they were presented, women still surpassed the expectations which society set for them. Due to the relentless hard work of female nurses in the Civil War, women in America have thrived and continue to make their mark.
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From the very beginning, females were forced to go through the insult of being discriminated against only because they were born a woman and not a man. As women began to apply to become nurses, the superintendent of nursing produced a list of qualifications which a female nurse was required to meet in order to be considered for the job (McPherson, 1992, p. 391). “The woman applicant must be at least thirty years old, plain in appearance, plain in dress” (Seigel, 1990, p. 5). Men who enlisted to serve as soldiers or doctors were not held to the same standards as women were; which was essentially discrimination based upon appearance. Perhaps more soldiers would have survived if a skilled nurse were there to help with injuries and wounds acquired in battle, but men perished because some of those talented women were deemed “too pretty” to be a