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Susan Faludi's primary analysis in her assessment of the feminist movement consists of move and countermove. She argues that women's rights and the feminist movement has had a traditional cyclical pattern. In decades where strides were made for women's rights and equality, setbacks happened in the following decade primarily because of a socially acclimated "backlash" against those strides made. In Faludi's study, the 1980s is the decade of "backlash" set against the strides made in the 1970s. Her argument is that there has been a series of social myths put forth in the 1980s, combined with an almost collusive effect in fashion, art, and the academy to suggest that the promises of the 1970s for women led to a desert of despair in the 1980s. Indictments about working women, the supposed perils of such an endeavor, as well as the lack of vocabulary to articulate what feminism in the next decade will resemble have helped to create an arena where Faludi feels that the movement will stall. The implication is that no one is saying that women should not pursue rights, but Faludi is passionate about the idea that the struggle must continue, the cause must progress, and the dream for equality in all realms should never disappear. She feels that the culture of the 1980s has done a good job of attempting to silence these realities, causing the movement to be in danger of receding.
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