Tag Archives: History

Margaret Thatcher Dies

She was far from a feminist or social justice warrior, but she was, as the Times put it, “the first woman to become prime minister of Britain and the first to lead a major Western power in modern times.” She didn’t do particularly good things for women, the poor or the marginalized. While I can’t say I’m a fan of her policies, the increased normalization of women in power is a good thing — even if Thatcher herself thought feminism was unnecessary. She was not, in fact, a “real feminist.” But her election and her leadership were nonetheless indicative of feminist progress. Continue reading

Posted in Feminism, Gender, Politics | Tagged , , | 210 Comments

Where are the feminists today?

Last night, PBS aired the documentary MAKERS, a truncated history of the women’s movement. It’s streaming here, and is worth a watch — it’s powerful, inspiring and sometimes enraging. It serves as a good reminder of the debt of gratitude that we owe our feminist foremothers. At the end, though, there’s the question of where feminists are today — and there’s nothing about feminism online. I address that issue in the Guardian: Continue reading

Posted in Blogging, Feminism | Tagged , , | 36 Comments

The many types of prostitutes in ancient Rome

UPDATE: After posting this guest entry, it was brought to my attention that the blog from which it is cross-posted contains material that is racist, misogynist, fat-shaming and transphobic. Had I known that history, I would not have allowed this post to be published on Feministe. We will not be publishing work from this author again. And going forward, when guest posts are offered, I will do more homework into a blogger’s background and past posts, instead of just generally perusing their blog for anything that immediately stands out. The Feministe team is also discussing ways to prevent this from happening in the future. I apologize that a piece from such a problematic author was posted in this space. -Jill Continue reading

Posted in Discrimination, History, Sex | Tagged , | 146 Comments

Amazing feminist history through the lens of “Ms. Magazine”

In the years leading up to the birth of “Ms. Magazine”, women had trouble getting a credit card without a man’s signature, had few legal rights when it came to divorce or reproduction, and were expected to aspire solely to … Continue reading

Posted in Feminism, History, Media & Media Literacy | Tagged | 18 Comments

Pro-slavery propaganda from the 1800s USA

Oh. My. God. Thanks to LoriAdorable’s Twitter stream, I learn that in the early 1800s, pro-slavery authors reacted to the anti-slavery classic Uncle Tom’s Cabin by writing their own pro-slavery propaganda. I guess that makes sense. What’s really cool is … Continue reading

Posted in Advertising, Art, History, Politics, Race & Ethnicity, Racism | Tagged , , , | 106 Comments

Welcome to the Dollhouse: Men and Beauty Products

Back when pretty much the only men wearing makeup were either rock lords or Boy George, I privately came up with the guideline that if any particular piece of grooming was something women generally performed while men generally didn’t, I … Continue reading

Posted in Advertising, Beauty, Celebrity, Class, Fashion, Gender, History | Tagged , , , , , , | 27 Comments

Grassroots organizing for feminism, S&M, HIV, and everything else

I wrote this for Bitch Magazine’s Feminist Coming-Out Day Blog Carnival; the goal is to talk about feminist “click” moments. Earlier this month, my sex-positive documentary film series screened “Jane: An Abortion Service”. The film tells the extraordinary story of … Continue reading

Posted in Feminism, Health, History, Sex | Tagged , , , , | 11 Comments

Where are you from? Part 7

That is it, there is no more. Thank you for participating in this project. Writing it certainly helped me to clarify and work through a lot of my thinking and pain around this question, and I feel a lot easier … Continue reading

Posted in History, Race & Ethnicity | Tagged , , , | 8 Comments

Where are you from? Part 6

Previously: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, and Part 5. I wonder what the future looks like. I am thinking about what “where are you from” will mean in my family’s future. I wonder what it means even … Continue reading

Posted in History, Race & Ethnicity | Tagged , , , | 10 Comments

Where are you from? Part 5

Previously: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, and Part 4. How do you relate to where you are now? Does it feel like home? Who lets it feel like home? I have lived in this city all my life and … Continue reading

Posted in History, Race & Ethnicity | Tagged , , | 27 Comments


This isn’t the post I was going to write today. I was going to write about the right to fuck up in feminist/progressive/social justice communities. Maybe you’ll get that one later in the week. But this morning I woke up … Continue reading

Posted in History | Tagged , , , | 21 Comments

Where are you from? Part 4

Previously: Part 1, Part 2, and Part 3. Where are you now? Is it home? Is it a place you can’t see your way to it being a home? Sometimes identifying a place as where you’re from isn’t just about … Continue reading

Posted in History, Race & Ethnicity, Racism | Tagged , , , | 24 Comments