Proposed Statement of Political Principles

(1969) A proposed statement of unity circulated while the Chicago Women's Liberation Union was first being organized. (1969)

(Editors Note:This proposed statement of political principles with accompanying preamble was circulated as the CWLU was first being organized.)

I. [As radical women] we demand the right of all women to control all aspects of their lives.

  1. Women must have control over their own bodies, and therefore over childbearing and medical care and research affecting them.
  2. Women must no longer bear the major burden of child-rearing and domestic tasks. These should be clearly the public responsibility of the total community.
  3. Women must have full participation in the control of an educational system that will guarantee the realization of their fullest human potentials.
  4. Women must have full access to all meaningful and satisfying work and, like all workers, must control the profits and administration of their own labor.

II. Our commitment to self-determination and people's control demands that we work towards a society in which priorities are determined by genuine human needs as defined by the people themselves. We will therefore work to end capitalism and all forms of exploitation and corruption growing out of the capitalist system; we will struggle for the establishment of a socialist society.

  1. We support the struggles for self-determination of all sectors of the population.
  2. We demand workers' control of the means of production.
  3. We demand people's control of the institutions which serve them.
  4. We demand the establishment of a scientific and technological system which uses the resources of nature to the greatest benefit of humankind while at the same time reestablishing and maintaining the balance of nature.
  5. We are committed to building a movement that embodies within it the humane values of the non-exploitative and non-manipulative society for which we are fighting.

III. As radical women we demand an end to all forms of oppression in American society.

  1. We will work to eliminate all forms of class oppression.
  2. We are committed to ending all forms of caste oppression, in particular to the desperate struggles of the black a brown communities for self determination and we will work to end white racism.

IV. As radical women we unequivocally condemn and will organize against all forms of imperialism; we will devote special effort to the destruction of American imperialism and its oppression of peoples abroad.

  1. As women fighting for self-determination, we will do all in our power to support the struggles of women throughout the world for freedom and self-determination. We support liberation struggles of people throughout the world for control over the destinies of their own countries.
  2. We violently condemn the role of American imperialism in all third world countries and in particular in Vietnam. We support and salute the struggles for independence and freedom of the Vietnamese National Liberation Front and of the Vietnamese Women's Liberation Union.

To these ends we join together to form the Chicago Women's Liberation Union.

Proposed Preamble TO The Statement Of Political Principles

The oppression of "women is the oldest and most widespread form of caste oppression." By caste oppression, we mean a social system which divides the population into groups on the basis of characteristics over which the individual has no control -- e.g. sex, race, age, intelligence -and then distributes power and privilege among those groups; further, a caste system delimits the behavior of all castes, and, through an ideology justifying those delimitations, teaches the members of the lower castes to acquiesce to the authority of the upper castes. Women are played off against each other by divisive factors such as ago, race, class, marital status "intelligence" and "beauty." We are unified however by the common victimization of sex oppression.

America is a class society. One of the major functions of caste and other structured inequalities of power is to support the domination of the corporate elite over the majority of the people.
As radical women we demand the identification and elimination of all forms of oppression -- class, caste, and colonial -- and to the formation of a socialist society in which all individuals have equal access to the material and experiential wealth of their world.