The second wave of feminism generally refers to the organised feminist activism in the second half of the 20th Century. In Britain, the Women’s Liberation Movement (WLM) demanded women redefine their roles as wives, mothers and workers. These feminists were fighting for equality in marriage and the workplace, opening up discussions around sexual liberation and sexuality and campaigning to end violence against women.
Some key moments during this period included the introduction of the contraceptive pill in 1961, the female workers striking at the Dagenham Ford factory for equal pay in 1968, and the passing of the Sex Discrimination Act in 1975.
Important texts of this time include:
The Second Sex by Simone de Beavoir (1949)
The Feminine Mystique by Betty Friedan (1963)
Sexual Politics by Kate Millett (1970)
The Female Eunuch by Germain Greer (1970)
Against Our Will: Men. Women and Rape by Susan Brownmiller (1975)
Beyond the Fragments by Sheila Rowbotham, Lynne Segal and Hilary Wainwright (1979)
Ain’t I a Woman: Black Women and Feminism by bell hooks (1981)”