Now Is the Time for Asian American Women Like Me to Break the Taboo on Intimate Partner Violence

I’m an Asian American woman who serves on the city council in Eastvale, Calif. I’ve served as mayor there. I’m also a survivor of intimate partner violence, and it’s time for me to talk about it.

Up to 55 percent of Asian women report experiencing intimate partner violence. In 236 cases involving homicides of AAPI (Asian and Pacific Islander) women, 58 percent with known causes were related to intimate partner violence, with 81 percent of perpetrators being the victim’s current intimate partner, and 10 percent a former intimate partner. There is power in sharing stories like mine to come to terms with our past, and to help other women dealing with situations like this in the present or in the future.

Keeping Score: Women’s Grammy Wins (and Losses); NYC Clinics to Provide Free Abortion Pills; Navajo Nation Elects First Woman Speaker

In every issue of Ms., we track research on our progress in the fight for equality, catalogue can’t-miss quotes from feminist voices and keep tabs on the feminist movement’s many milestones. We’re Keeping Score online, too—in this biweekly roundup.

This week: The Grammys saw wins (and losses) for women performers and feminist causes; Republicans in Congress call for a nationwide abortion ban; Iowa state rep compares women to cattle; Florida educators reject ban on books in classrooms; NYC city-run clinics to provide free abortion medication; Lisa Marie Presley dies at 54; Biden administration releases plan for renter’s bill of rights; Utah Governor Spencer Cox approves ban on youth gender-affirming care; and more.

Our Abortion Stories: ‘My Abortion Was the Beginning of Getting My Life Back’

Last summer, the Supreme Court overturned the longstanding precedents of Roe v. Wade, representing the largest blow to women’s constitutional rights in history. A series from Ms., Our Abortion Stories chronicles readers’ experiences of abortion pre- and post-Roe. Abortions are sought by a wide range of people, for many different reasons. There is no single story.

Share your abortion story by emailing myabortionstory@msmagazine.com.

Like Prince Harry, Survivors of Family Sexual Assault Know What It’s Like to Cope With Family After Public Truth-Telling

In his new book Spare, Prince Harry outlines the trauma he experienced as a child after Princess Diana’s death, as well as the whitewashing and abuse he and his wife, Meghan Markle, suffered at the hands of both the press and his royal family. As a survivor of sexual violence, I recognize Harry’s plight and also the incredibly painful journey of losing relatives because of truth-telling in an effort to be whole again.

Jacinda Ardern Showed the Power of Women’s Leadership—And the Urgent Need for More

“The resignation of Jacinda Ardern reminds us that women continue to face barriers in politics, and that it is essential to build governmental workplaces that enable all to participate and succeed,” said Cynthia Richie Terrell, executive director and founder of RepresentWomen. “Even as leaders like Ardern have advanced women’s political representation, the pace of progress remains unacceptably sluggish.” 

Reads for the Rest of Us: The Most Anticipated Feminist Books of 2023

I have spent the last few months scouring catalogs and websites, receiving hundreds of books and even more emails from authors, publicists and publishers, reading your book Tweets and DMs, all to find out what books are coming out in 2023 that I think you, my exceptional, inquisitive and discerning Ms readers, will want to hear about. 

Here’s your TBR (to be read) for the year. Enjoy!

New U.S. Global Gender-Based Violence Strategy Says All The Right Things—But Action Is Next

On Dec. 12, the U.S. government launched its updated and long-awaited Strategy to Prevent and Respond to Gender-Based Violence Globally. On paper, the strategy looks great. But, as always, the questions we’re left with are: What does the U.S. government do with this document now? How is it implemented? Will funding increase and be sustained?

As the halfway mark of this administration’s current term approaches, we need to ensure that words are backed up with action.

On the Power of Choice and Imagination: The Ms. Q&A with ‘Women Talking’ Producer Dede Gardner

Already showing in select theaters and releasing nationwide on Jan. 27, Women Talking is both beautiful and harrowing: an ideologically captivating drama about how a group of women with very little agency navigate making a choice that will have profound effects on their lives, their children’s lives and their community. This extraordinary film features an equally extraordinary ensemble cast, including Rooney Mara, Claire Foy, Jessie Buckley and Judith Ivey, with Ben Whishaw and Frances McDormand.

The film takes place in 2010 in an isolated religious community, where it’s been discovered that men and boys have been drugging and raping the women and girls while they sleep; the story concentrates on the small group chosen to make a crucial decision for all the women and girls in the colony: stay and fight back, or leave. Ms. had the opportunity to speak with producer Dede Gardner about her work on the film and its reflection of the power of community, of choice, and of imagination.

Landmark Global Biodiversity Agreement Enshrines Rights of Indigenous Peoples—Providing Hope for Bolivia’s Guarani

After more than four years of negotiations, on Dec.19, 2022, nearly 200 nations adopted the Kunming-Montreal Global Biodiversity Framework—a binding agreement to protect at least 30 percent of the world’s biodiversity within 2030. The agreement represents a significant step forward towards rights-based, gender just and socially equitable biodiversity conservation.

There is hope that the agreement will help to return stolen lands to communities and ensure the rights of Indigenous peoples—like the Guaraní of Laguna Chica, Bolivia, located in the Yaku Agüa territory by Bolivia’s southern border with Argentina.