Gilman Vs Dubois

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Charlotte Perkins Gilman and W.E.B Du Bois are perhaps two of the most influential gender and race scholars in the United States. In many ways both scholars contribution is similar in nature. In the case of Gilman, her theoretical framework is largely influenced by classical theories such as Marx, Weber and even Durheim. Her work focused on gender stratification through the process of the division of labor in the private and public sphere. But Gilman not only looked at the division of labor as the source of women’s oppression, her activist role identified mechanisms that could improve women’s life conditions. Similarly, W.E.B. Du Bois theoretical framework is influenced by Marx and Weber’s sociological theories. While Du Bois believed…show more content…
Her distinguished feminist utopian is grounded on systemic changes to improve women’s life conditions. In her book, Women and Economics, Gilman developed a theory of gender stratification that connected the economic relationship between the private and public sphere. She argued that humans were the only species in the world were the female is entirely dependent on the man, “We are the only animal species in which the female depends on the male for food, the only animal species in which the sex-relation is also an economic relation” (Gilman 1989:3) . For instance, she explained how women exchange home-labor for subsistence items such as food and clothing. She indicated that this type of exchange relationship is present in families with traditional structures. This type of exchange process in the private sphere represent a form of exploitation for women. In the same way Marx’s theoretical contribution illustrated the relationship between capitalism and exploitation. Gilma’s argument and work refuted beliefs and practices that produced women’s oppression and exploitation. She recognized that economic progress “is exclusively masculine” ( Gilman 1898:4). Therefore, she indicated that women’s gender roles in terms of labor could be perform by men. But to make these changes it would take…show more content…
Du Bois’s goal was to educate Whites on Black’s social and economic conditions of the time. He wanted for White’s to understand the social and economic conditions of Blacks in the United States. He wrote, “To the real question, How does it feel to be a problem? I answer seldom a word.” (Du Bois 1994:2). Du Bois understood that while Whites reached social and economic progress Blacks were still far from experiencing social equality. For instance, Du Bois criticized Booker T. Washington’s ideas for Blacks to give up their political power, civil rights and education to young Blacks. Du Bois recognized that not having political bargain, and limiting black people to technical education was not progress but a continuation of a cast

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