Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Why it is important to share women's stories ...

With the recent shift in our country's leadership, the women's movement has become louder and more active, which is paramount as the present administration is NO friend of women! In fact the idea that our country elected a chauvinistic, misogynistic, racist, sexist, egomaniac as leader, should put all women on high alert. His campaign alone set Women's Rights back decades, but his election has made Women's Rights an endangered species. Now more than ever, women's accomplishments and milestones need to be taught, celebrated and highlighted. And women and girls need to be supported, defended and assisted in following their dreams and desires. This is why I am sharing women's stories here, on my blog, in honor of National Women History month (March). 

As happens with many of my projects, posting these mini biographical posts as a way to celebrate National Women's History month, happened organically. I hadn't planned it, but suddenly it felt paramount for me to share the histories, fates and accomplishments of women, some well known and some not-so well known. I feel that it is so important for the acts and deeds of women to be  remembered and honored. And even though in recent years, there is much more written and reported about women in history, there is so much more that needs to be shared.

created by Hannah Hill
I have this deep desire to spread the knowledge of women in history because I believe in the strength of teaching through modeling, through example. There is immense power in being able to see yourself in the world, to see people who are like you, in race, in gender, doing the jobs, tasks and careers that you want to do.
I believe in the truth of the above quote by ever-sage Virginia Woolf, that women often had to hide their identity. At the time, women's work was not noteworthy.

Also, I was influenced by the writings of feminist, activist and artist, Judy Chicago, who wrote many books and articles. I was greatly effected by Chicago's views in
Through The Flower: My Struggle as A Woman Artist.

This idea rang true for me,  that we, girls and women, did not and do not have the access and the knowledge of what women have done before us, what they had achieved and where they had failed.  When I thought back on all that I had learned in elementary school, high school and college, it was definitely male-centered biased; the men had the power, made the decisions, won the battles and the women supported them, the nameless women.

"As in many other microcosms, the role of women in the art world has always suffered from the male establishment protecting its territory. Change is so slow and incremental, but often follows other changes in society at large. We are now in a moment to revel in this conversation, which is never big enough, but also bigger than it was."

the above excerpt comes from a letter from the SOHO20  to the NY Times – in response to “Female Artists Are (Finally) Getting Their Turn” written by Hilarie M. Sheets published on March 29, 2016 (click here to letter entire letter)

And the history of women is rich and lush and multi-layered because women are multi-layered, women not only bring to the table brains, ideas, strength, fearlessness and most all of the qualities that men can bring, but women also have the capability to bring life to the table, they can 'procreate'. And women should always have and should remain to have the right for each of them to personally decide if they wish to procreate or not to procreate!! 

This month I discovered this 'rad' book about women and I highly recommend it. Each woman's story is told in a page or so, piquing the reader's curiosity so that they could go and learn more about each subject.   

But for now, I am sharing these snapshots of women who are doing and have done things, interesting things, important things, quiet things, poetic things, creative things, radical things, brave things, and so many other 'things'.
I share them so that women and girls, and especially my girls, know that they can do ANYTHING that they want to do in life.

It is important that women and girls know
NOT to allow ANYONE to tell them that they can NOT do some 'thing' because they are a woman!

I believe that gender or race should not be the reason that anyone is unable to pursue a career, a dream or a life style. 

And I will end with this quote from the author of Rad Women Worldwide, Kate Schatz:

some of the women's who stories I have shared this month.

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