Weekend Reading on Women’s Representation; Rest in Power, Lani Guinier; NY Gov Kathy Hochul Is Shaking Things Up for Women; Black Women Are Just 6% of U.S. House

Weekend Reading for Women’s Representation is a compilation of stories about women’s representation.

This week: New York Gov. Kathy Hochul’s term limit legislation could provide more women the chance to run and win; Minneapolis’s Andrea Jenkins is the first openly trans city council president in the U.S., and Seattle’s Debora Juarez marks same milestone for Indigenous people; Sheila Cherfilus-McCormick’s election brings the percentage of Black women in the U.S. House to 6 percent; Xiomara Castro, the incoming woman president of Honduras; the legacy of voting rights champion Lani Guinier, who died on Jan. 7; and more.

Rest in Power: Sarah Weddington, Feminist Attorney and Champion of Roe v. Wade

On Jan. 22, 2022, we mark the 49th anniversary of Roe v. Wade, the landmark Supreme Court decision that legalized abortion in the United States. The case was argued by a 26-year-old female lawyer from Texas: Sarah Weddington, in her first appearance before the Court. Female lawyers were so rare in those days that the Supreme Court lawyers lounge didn’t even have a ladies’ room. There were no female judges; Weddington faced a wall of older white men.

Almost five decades after the decision, Sarah Weddington died at her home in Austin on Dec. 26, 2021, at age 76, after a period of declining health. Rest in power, Sarah Weddington.

bell hooks: The Black Feminist Guide That Literally Saved Our Lives

bell hooks’s death is a reminder that the work continues, and that it is even more imperative to continue resisting systemic oppressions, to carve a path to liberation.

Her signed message to me—”Janell! To loving blackness –bell hooks”—still resonates with me because I have approached my critiques through this radical positioning of “loving blackness” and doing so as resistance to “white supremacist capitalist patriarchy.”

Rest in Power, bell hooks—Iconoclastic Writer and Activist Who Reminded Us “Feminism Is for Everybody”

We were devastated to hear bell hooks—scholar, writer, activist and feminist legend—died on Wednesday, Dec. 15, at her home. She was 69.

In this beloved interview from the Spring 2011 issue of Ms. between hooks and Jennifer D. Williams, hooks frankly shares her bold takes on the past, present and future of feminism, and how to *live* it—not just think it.

“On one hand we’re being told that feminism failed, but if it failed why do people want to go back and take away some basic successes of the movement?”

Weekend Reading on Women’s Representation: Sweden and Honduras Both Get Their First Female Heads of State

Weekend Reading for Women’s Representation is a compilation of stories about women’s representation.

This week: women’s social citizenship must be embraced; Sweden’s first woman prime minister is back in office; Honduras just elected a woman president for the first time; how gender proportionality principle can achieve gender balance in the corporate sector; the status of women in the media in 2021; the growing reach of gender lens investing; and more.

Rest in Power: Kamla Bhasin, Feminist Icon of India

Kamla Bhasin, an early leader of the women’s movement in India, died in New Delhi on Sept. 25 at the age of 75. Bhasin played an integral role in the second wave of feminism and was a prominent voice in the women’s movement in India and other South Asian countries from the 1970s to the present. Her impact will live on for years in the songs, poems, art and music of the thousands of people that she inspired across South Asia.

Rest in Power: Penny Harrington, Criminal Justice Reformer and the First Woman to Lead a Police Department in a Major U.S. City

Penny Harrington—the chief of the Portland, Oregon Police Bureau in the mid-’80s and the first woman to lead a major U.S. city’s police department—died at her home in Morro Bay, Calif., on September 15, 2021, at the age of 79.
Harrington became a police officer in 1964 in Portland and headed the Feminist Majority Foundation’s National Center for Women and Policing at its founding in 1995. Harrington served in Portland in the Women’s Protective Division and began to challenge discriminatory policies after a few years in the force. She became chief of police in 1985 and was the first woman in America to lead a police department in a major city.