Trump’s Appeal to Nostalgia Deliberately Evokes America’s More Racist, More Sexist Past

There’s a reason Donald Trump’s 2024 presidential campaign is working hard to evoke nostalgia: People who are nostalgic—meaning, people who long for America’s “good old days”—were more likely to vote for Republican candidates in the 2022 midterm elections.

Trump’s nostalgia is more than simple retrospection. Trump’s appeal isn’t just about a better economic past or a more stable society. It serves as an evocation of a time in America when women and minorities had less power.

What the 3.2 Million-Year-Old Lucy Fossil Reveals About Nudity and Shame

Fifty years ago, scientists discovered “Lucy,” a nearly complete fossilized skull and hundreds of pieces of bone of a 3.2-million-year-old female specimen of the genus Australopithecus afarensis, often described as “the mother of us all.”

Though Lucy has solved some evolutionary riddles, her appearance remains an ancestral secret.

Popular renderings dress her in thick, reddish-brown fur, with her face, hands, feet and breasts peeking out of denser thickets.This hairy picture of Lucy, it turns out, might be wrong.

Remembering the Late Faith Ringgold—the Black Feminist Artist Who Knew Who She Was

The late Faith Ringgold was a feminist, an activist, a teacher, a mother and an artist known for her innovative use of mediums, ranging from the more traditional oil on canvas, murals and mosaics, to story quilts, protest posters and soft sculptures.

(This article originally appears in the Summer 2024 issue of Ms. Join the Ms. community today and you’ll get issues delivered straight to your mailbox!)

‘My Journey From Guerilla to Grandmother’: The Ms. Q&A With Katherine Ann Power

In 1970, college student Katherine Ann Power became involved with a revolutionary anti-war guerilla group. Power was the getaway driver when the group attempted to rob a Massachusetts bank to help finance the anti-war movement.
For years, Power lived as Alice Metzinger: baker, cook and eventually— mom. As she reflected on her own responsibility for the officer’s death, she concluded that she needed to turn herself in to begin the long process of redemption and restitution.

Power has just written a memoir about her experience, Surrender: My Journey from Guerilla to Grandmother. She recently talked with Ms. about her involvement in the anti-war movement, the killing of police officer Walter Schroeder, her time in prison and her reflections on it all. 

‘The Other Roe’: Abortion Documentary Spotlights Atlanta Attorney Margie Pitts Hames

Most people are unaware that Roe v. Wade and Doe v. Bolton were both argued on the same day before the Supreme Court and upheld in the 1973 decision that legalized abortion. Roe legalized the right to abortion, while Doe ensured its availability and accessibility.

After nearly 50 years, both decisions were overturned in the Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health case in June 2022, leading to a fragmented legalization of abortion across the country. Ironically, the Jackson clinic that brought the suit was started by Susan Hill and me in 1995.

I was puzzled that the Doe decision and the lawyer who argued it, Margie Pitts Hames, did not have a more prominent place in the history of abortion rights. So I’m making a documentary about her and the case, called The Other Roe.

The Abolitionist Aesthetics of Patrisse Cullors, Co-Founder of Black Lives Matter

“Imagine if culturally we understood that protecting Black women meant protecting all of us,” said Patrisse Cullors, renowned for her activist work with Black Lives Matter, a global network she co-founded in 2013 with Alicia Garza and Ayo Tometi. “I think that’s what this show means to me.”

The show referenced here, “dedicated to all Black women and femmes around the world,” is the exhibit Between the Warp and Weft: Weaving Shields of Strength and Spirituality—an introduction to Cullors as an artist wielding her protection spell over Black women. The exhibit opens Saturday, June 15, at the Charlie James Gallery in downtown Los Angeles.

Criminalizing Drugs—Including Misoprostol and Mifepristone—Is a Bad Idea

Recently, Louisiana added misoprostol and mifepristone (“M&M”) to the state’s list of criminalized controlled substances. M&M are medications that, among other things, can safely and effectively end a pregnancy. As a result of this law, possession of these medications without a prescription can result in fines of up to $5,000 or “imprisonment of no more than five years with or without hard labor.”

Much of the outcry against this state action has focused on the fact that M&M are neither dangerous nor addictive and thus should not be categorized or criminalized as a controlled substance. While it is true that M&M, two exceptionally well-studied and approved medications, are extremely safe and lack any potential for addiction, this critique reinforces dangerous myths about the war on drugs already deeply intertwined with the war on abortion.

Honoring Queer Feminist Trailblazers: Octavia Butler, Marsha P. Johnson and Margaret Cho

Women throughout history have been inventing, leading, organizing, creating and making the world a better place despite gender injustice. If women knew about these inspiring stories that have been kept from them, would they be bolder and have more willingness to persevere?

In honor of Pride Month, we spotlight three queer feminist trailblazers: Afro-futurist novelist Octavia Butler; activist and drag queen Marsha P. Johnson; and actor and comedian Margaret Cho.