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The Famous Five: Heroes for Today
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Stereotypes and Ideologies

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British Imperialism

Social Darwinism

Temperance and Prohibition

Marxism, Socialism, and Communism

Social Gospel

Anti-feminist Atmosphere

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"The Eye Opener"Taken out of context, it is easy to eulogize the Famous 5 as heroes of the feminist movement, to dismiss them as "maternal" rather than "real" feminists, or to read their words and judge them as man-haters or bigots. But to identify these women in such a manner would be a grave injustice.

To help one understand and interpret some of the beliefs they held, one needs to view the Famous 5 as products of their time. Though it may be accurate that the Famous 5 took for granted many of the beliefs common to people of their station, they were also fine leaders who transcended the commonly held stereotypes about women, and pushed to achieve rights that women enjoy today.

To understand some of the forces that influenced the Famous 5, it is necessary to look at some of the major ideologies and movements that helped shape Canada in the early 20th century.

Video: Women on the March
The female suffrage movement embarrassed many politicians and amused the general public, as demonstrated by the silent film, "How They Got the Vote" by Ashley Miller. Watch Now
 
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