Oral BAC anglais : L’idée de progrès
Progress is the idea that the world can become increasingly better in terms of science, technology, modernisation, liberty, democracy, quality of life….. It could be understand as an improvement in our society.
It exists three types of progress : the Scientific Progress, the Technological Progress, and finally the Social Progress .
In our oral we will primarily study the last one : the social progress.
Unlike the other types of progress, the social one is highly recent. In fact since the XIX century no much advances have been made and respected.
So, we are going to ask us what is progress in our society and what are the limits ?
First of all, we will study the inequality between men and women. Then, we are going to see the inequality amongst blacks and whites. Finally, we will pay attention for all the spokesmen of those fights and their importance in social progress.
I) Inequalities and social progress amongst men and women
In our society, in the Western world and approximately in all the world, women used to be considered as less important than men. In fact, with the same academic luggage, the same society women earn on average 30% less. Besides, in the majority of the states women were not convicted to vote or to participate in the government. It was unbearable for them. ( as we saw in an add women were considered like slaves and machines in order to help men)
Nevertheless, since the XIX century progress have been made . Since 1918 women have had the right to vote in United Kingdom, in 1944 in france, 1971 in Switzerland and not so far in 2005 in Kuwait. Besides, we saw in class a document called The good wife’s guide it’s unfair and comic in our era. For example : it’s written that “ A good wife always Knows her place” “ Don’t greet him with complaints and problems” “ arrange his pillow” reportedly, women were considered as machines and slaves in order to serve and help men.
Unfortunately, nowadays, it persists lots of inequalities. In fact, in Saudi Arabia a few weeks ago, women were convicted to vote, however, currently they still don’t have the right to vote. Consequently, progress has been made but disparities about salaries, about their role in the house, or about their rights are persisting in some states and people’s minds. Nevertheless, there are other social inequalities and progress too.
II) The case of blacks and white’s social segregation and inequalities
1) In the case of inequality amongst blacks and whites it is a bit different. In fact, as women they were considered as less important than whites. From the XVI century to the XIX century, they used to be considered as animals and slaves.
2) Nevertheless, fortunately, progress has been made. Slavery was abolished in the XIX century in Europe and United States with the Civil Rights Act in 1875 and 1964 and aproximatly in all the world in the XX century. Furthermore, nowadays, social segregation has been abolished, as we saw in class with Obama or Mandela, blacks can obtain a high hob in the government.
3) In class we studied an article called “ Is black America better off under Obama” it was published by The Atlanta Voice at the beginning of the year. The article shows that about unemployment, poverty and the black/ white wealth gap : the situation is basically worst with Obama than Bush. Consequently, social progress is limited even if a black person becomes president or a woman ( Michelle Bachelet in Chili ). ( Number can be criticised : recent crisis in The United States).
III) The spokesman of fights against discrimination in order to increase the social progress
1) First we are going to speak about the suffragetes. They were fighting in order to obtain the equality between men and women because of it was unfair. The group was created at the beginning of the XX century because only men were allowed to vote in elections for members of Parliament. The leader was the lawyer Mrs Emmeline Pankhurst in 1903; she started the society called WSPU ( Woman’s social and political Union ) which moto was “ Deeds, not words”. One of the most important deed of this group was the 4th of June 1913 when the famous derby horse race was run at the Espsom Rececourse and at the bend called Tattenham Corner a suffragette named Emily Davidson ducked under the rails and rushed under the race course. She ran into the track of the king’s horse and died.
So Emmeline Pankhurst and Emily Davidson were spokesmen of fight against the inequality between men and women.
2) Also spokesmen in black and white discrimination. For example : Rosa Parks on the first of december 1955 Rosa Parks refused to give up her seat for a white person. Consequently, she was arrested and had to pay 15$ with Martin Luther king, she became on of the exemple of anti social segregation’s activists.
Barack Obama became the fisrt black president in the United State’s history. Mandela who fought during all his life againt apartheid.
First M/W discrimination improvement nevertheless still inequalities salaries, and the role of them in some men’s minds. Then B/W same problem however they were also considered as animals and slaves, social progress because since Xxth century all the states of the world have abolished the slavery. Nevertheless still inequalities some society and company. Those social progress needs spokesmen as Emeline Pankhurst fundator of the WSPU or Barack first black president.