Saturday, March 19, 2005

Maggie notes Robin Morgan for Women's History Month

Ticking off a list of names worthy for noting for Women's History Month, I came across many: Margaret Fuller, Mary Shelley, Kate Millet, Margaret Atwood, Lucy Stone, bell hooks, Kathy Boudin, Catharine A. MacKinnon, Eleanor Holmes Norton, Grace Paley, Grace Slick, Michelle Phillips, Nina Simone, Kate Bush, Nora Ephron, Anne Sexton, Louise Bryant, Janis Joplin, Aretha Franklin, Carole King, Tracy Chapman, Mary Daly, Rita Mae Brown, Joan Baez, Alice Walker . . . And for the longest time I was just paralyzed as I was facing this monstorous decision of how to choose one.

Certainly the struggle for equality has been made up of many, many women (and often some men) but hopefully by noting various individuals it brings awareness to the larger struggle and the many who participated in opening various fields and options to women.

So just when I was at the abandon-all-hope-all-ye-who-enter, I was gathering magazines to carry to my local library's magazine exchange and there's Ms. staring at me.

Robin Morgan is a writer who's influence on my own life has been wide ranging. It started when I was a teenager and found a copy of Sisterhood Is Powerful on my mother's bookshelves. Sisterhood Is Powerful is an anthology of writings from the women movement circa 1970 and Morgan served as the editor of the anthology. She also wrote a lengthy introduction for the book that served to capture what had led up to the then current wave of feminism. I found the anthology Sisterhood is Global (also edited by Robin Morgan) while I was in college and immediately snapped it up.

In 2003, Robin Morgan edited another anthology that I quickly added to my collection, Sisterhood Is Forever. I think the three Sisterhood books serve as a powerful overview of the feminist movement and I hope she continues to introduce and edit anthologies.

Robin Morgan currently serves as a consulting editor at Ms. along with Gloria Steinem who's already been highlighted. Both have long helped steer Ms. and as such have shaped my life in ways that I'm probably not even aware of.

I'd recommend this interview with Morgan for those new to her and I'd recommend this article by Morgan entitled "Fighting Words for a Secular America: Ashcroft & Friends VS.George Washington & The Framers." I'd also recommend that you check your libraries and bookstores for copies of Sisterhood is Powerful and Sisterhood is Forever. I'd also recommend that you check out her book The Demon Lover: The Roots of Terrorism.

[Note: This entry arrived Thursday. With three new entries on Women's History Month posting this Saturday, I think we've caught up on the two days we missed.]