My two favorite articles that we read this week were “Black and White Visions of Welfare” by Linda Gordon and “Girl Reporter Derrring-Do” by Elizabeth Cochrane.
I liked the piece written by Gordon because it was interesting comparing the social programs that are offered in today’s society v. the welfare offered in the 1900’s like the Hull House. Gordon specifically focused on identifying the gaps between the black and white women groups of the time. She wrote how white women saw themselves as assisting others, including the blacks. Through this separation of class, the black women came to focus on issues that concerned only themselves. These women promoted great social change, a lot of which is still felt in the programs set up today. One can only imagine what they would’ve been able to accomplish if they weren’t divided by race and false perceptions of the other.
My second favorite piece was “Girl Reporter Derring-Do”. This is mostly because I was so fascinated by her journey. She was an incredibly headstrong young woman who without a chaperone (unheard of at the time) traveled around the world in seventy-two days. Being of college age I have begun to develop a very strong need to see the world around me. The fact that she accomplished the feat alone at twenty-five floored me. I wonder if she ever did compete against a man in an effort to be the fastest. She seems so strong-willed and I bet that alone would’ve ensured her victory.
After reading this week I have a renewed sense of what it was to be a woman growing up in a younger America. I’m inspired by the determination of young females that led to the weakening of male dominance in our society. It makes me want to be better, do more for my sex and all those who face social injustice.