For nearly 50 years, generations of feminists in the U.S. have marched, lobbied and advocated for the Equal Rights Amendment (ERA)—a simple but crucial amendment that would enshrine gender equality in the Constitution. Trailblazing feminists—including Alfre Woodard, Dolores Huerta and Kate Walsh—want to make sure the message is heard: There is no time limit on equality.
“Before Meghan, Princess Diana had already warned that strong, independent women are incompatible with an institution that can only support one queen whose interests must further patriarchy, imperialism and whiteness.
“Change is possible in our attitudes on gender, race and class, but sometimes—as we’re learning from the examples of Diana and Meghan—the changes are much too slow.”
The Kardashians made their money by trademarking their white femininity, their relationships with African American men and marketing Black beauty aesthetics for white women—a type of modern mediated Blackface in a cultural space where few actual Black faces actually grace U.S. television screens.
In the midst of a global pandemic, the entertainment industries have come to a standstill. Theater, a traditionally live experience, is especially facing challenges. But lifelong feminist and theater producer Susan Loewenberg of L.A. Theatre Works finds her organization in a unique position.
“I think people who dismiss her as somehow being a lightweight or a pretty girl with some lucky breaks—as if you can create at that level without thinking critically!—that is actually just another sign of misogyny and how women are discounted for what they create. When we make exquisite things, people assume there are fairies in the night who do it with magic dust instead of looking at the work and the research and the effort that goes into it.”
Given recent activism on the part of celebrity women—from the #MeToo movement to the Time’s Up Campaign—it’s easy to forget there was a time not that long ago when the link between fame and feminism was viewed with suspicion and even incredulity. Here, we chart the evolution—and increasing impact—of celebrity feminism over this millennium.
Actor and activist Jane Fonda and Ms. magazine co-founder Gloria Steinem were arrested today in Washington, D.C., alongside National Domestic Workers Alliance Director Ai-jen Poo and Moral Mondays leader Reverend William Barber II, at a climate change action also attended by founder of United Farm Workers and Feminist Majority Foundation board member Dolores Huerta.
Singer-songwriter Carrie Newcomer’s 19th album, “The Point of Arrival,” is personal and contemplative—and it’s the kind of inner work that inspires her activism in the world. Deeply influenced by her Quakerism, Newcomer’s music reflects an inclusivity and a call to “lean in toward the light” that offers an inspirational soundtrack for social justice movements.
“Do we really want to stand by the idea that its fine for female characters to be one-dimensional, narrowly-stereotyped, hyper-sexualized or simply not there?”
The 71st Primetime Emmys on Sunday honored the best of television—but the night’s real winner was feminism.