- August 19, 2012
- Posted by: essay
- Category: Free essays
Historically, the position of women was inferior compared to men, but the modern epoch is characterized by the elimination of the unsurpassable barrier that used to exist between men and women in the overwhelming majority of societies. In this respect, the American society is in the avant-garde of the feminist movement since it was American women who started the women rights movement aiming at the elimination of gender discrimination and provision of equal opportunities for both men and women. However, in spite of a considerable progress of the feminist movement worldwide, the position of women in different countries of the world is still unequal. The difference is particularly striking when American women are compared to Asian women, for instance, because American and Asian women represent absolutely different cultures and, what is more, if American women are in the avant-garde of the global feminist movement, than Asian women are traditionally in the rearguard of the feminist movement. But the difference between American and Asian women cannot be limited solely to their participation in the feminist movement, but it should also focus on the cultural difference and local traditions which make the lifestyle and behavior of American and Asian women quite different. Moreover, it is necessary to remember that along with substantial differences there are still certain similarities between American and Asian women.
On analyzing the current position of American and Asian women, it should be said that American women are apparently in an advantageous position compared to Asian women. In this respect, it is possible to speak about advantages of American women in terms of human rights as well as professional and educational opportunities. To put it more precisely, today, the access of American women to education is not limited by any means and they have opportunities to get higher education and better job opportunities compared to Asian women. The latter are often deprived of an opportunity not only to get the higher education but it is quite difficult for them to get the basic or elementary education. In many Asian countries, especially of the Middle East, where Islamic laws dominate, as well as in such countries as India, Pakistan and others, the professional education of women is considered to be unnecessary. At any rate, the number of women with higher education in Asian countries is consistently lower compared to the number of women with higher education in the USA. As a result, Asian women have worse job opportunities compared to American women.
At this point, it is also worth speaking about cultural differences between American and Asian women. Obviously, American women pay more attention to their education and professional career than Asian women do and the reason is the cultural difference which make the professional career the main priority of American women. In this respect, it should be said that the divorce rate in the US is very high, especially compared to Asian countries, and women often have to earn for living on their own without the support of their husbands, which is the norm in the majority of Asian countries. As a result, American women have to be more independent and career-oriented compared to Asian women. Also, it is necessary to take into consideration the mentality of American and Asian women. The former are brought up in a more liberal cultural environment where all people are treated as equal or are supposed to be treated as such, while, in Asia, women still play the secondary role.
Moreover, socio-cultural norms and traditions make Asian women more oriented on the family life since their prerogative is taking care of children and household, while for American women such a position is apparently unacceptable because it makes them inferior to men and deprives them of larger job opportunities and career progress. However, it is necessary to admit that, in spite of the progress of feminist movement in the US and emancipation of American women, they are still in an unequal position compared to men and this problem makes the similar to Asian women. For instance, it is not a secret that, if an American woman has a child, it reduces consistently her chances to make any career progress, while often they have to choose a part-time job or focus entirely on their household and upbringing of children. The same trend can be traced in regard to Asian women, who have even fewer opportunities to succeed in their professional career, especially if they have children.
Thus, taking into account all above mentioned, it is possible to conclude that American and Asian women are very different. They have a different mentality and they were brought up in absolutely different cultural environment that determined the difference in their lifestyle, behavior and set of values. As a result, American women tend to be more liberal and independent compared to Asian women, they strive for better job opportunities and attempt to make a successful career, while Asian women are often focused entirely on their families and households.