Is it true that feminist concerns about sexual exploitation are a recent thing? Nope.
A small thing that has come up in my ongoing fascination with the battles over modern feminism in atheist circles: There’s a widespread claim that feminists of yore were “reasonable” feminists who merely wanted things like the vote and the right to own property, whereas modern feminists are “radicals” with their uncomfortable questioning of sexual harassment and abuse, as well as anger about the victim-blaming that occurs afterwards. Comparing modern feminists with our supposedly more conservative predecessors is a common tactic of anti-feminists, but you’re seeing it crop up during this fight over feminism in atheism. Richard Dawkins put his toe in those waters by praising Christina Hoff Sommers, whose only real tactic is claiming she stands for this older, supposedly more restrained votes-and-property feminism, against the newcomers with their anger about things like sexual objectification and abuse.
That argument is bullshit, just so you know. Our elders were complaining about sexual abuse back in the day, just as we are complaining now. For instance, this passage from The Second Sex by Simone de Beauvoir, published in 1949, is illustrative:
De Beauvoir seemed less than enthusiastic about powerful men who close ranks around sexual predators while pointing fingers at their victims. I mean, it’s possible that this is just a bad translation and if I read it in the original French, it would read dif— Ha, just kidding. I mean, clearly in 1949, feminists objected to men who they think they they are great arbiters of truth but treat sexual predators with more respect and dignity than they do victims of sexual exploitation.
As for the notion that abortion is some new-fangled feminist obsession, I will point out that in this very same passage, she denounces “the hypocrisy of men decreeing abortion to be criminal when every year in France a million women are put by men into the situation where they have to abort”.
But sure, tell yourself that feminist concerns about how men leverage their social power to exploit women sexually, often creating major damage in women’s lives, is something third wavers came up with because they were bored. Whatever gets you through the day.