VFA is one of the foremost sources of information about the Second Wave women's movement for journalists, historians and other writers.
What's Happening (just Select/Click below) MAY 2016
A LETTER FROM
"We are proud of you all!"
Jacqui Ceballos Founder and former President,
Veteran Feminists of America
Eleanor Pam Current President,
Veteran Feminists of America
(Eleanor Pam & Jacqui Ceballos April 6, 2002 at a conference Honoring Florida Feminists)
To the loyal members and friends of VFA who have supported our work throughout the years--we send greetings and heartfelt thanks.
It has been our singular honor to represent and lead this remarkable organization whose mission is to document and preserve the revolutionary achievements of Second Wave Feminism. We pledge also to keep faith with successor generations of women and girls by continuing our work to inspire and educate them about the importance and meaning of the ground-breaking changes to the world brought about by the pioneer feminists of VFA.
I am pleased to send this annual report about the ongoing progress of our organization, VETERAN FEMINISTS OF AMERICA Inc.
Referenced below is our recently completed, unique and historical e-book, Our Fabulous Feminists. You can access it by going to our website to get your free copy. (http://www.vfa.us/FabFemBook.htm).
This is one of VFA's most important legacy projects--a biographical compendium of 95 Second Wave pioneers. This ambitious work is the first volume in a series of sequential e-books that we will be publishing and distributing as part of our mission to document and preserve the accomplishments of the Women's Revolution and the seismic changes to the world it brought about.
We intend to continue collecting more vital stories of the lives and achievements of those remarkable veterans who played a part in the women's revolution and invite those of you who are not in this first volume and qualify as Second Wave feminists to contact us through our Founder, Jacqui Ceballos, (firstname.lastname@example.org).
For use by researchers, educators and students, VFA has converted DVD to MP4 format the complete unabridged videos of its reunions, conferences and awards events from 1993 to 2011. Leaders and activists reminisce about their experiences in the company of sister/fellow feminists. VFA made this historic treasure possible by presenting more than 25 major feminist events throughout the United States and videotaping them for posterity.
Jeannetta Maclin, center, with, from left to right: Yvette Goods, Pam Ross, Stephanie Lummus and Marcia Cline. Photograph: Stephanie Lummus
“And we have got to do something about the system when women are jailed when they can’t raise cash bail, who have small kids and then they lose their jobs. It’s a national problem. We’re going to get volunteers to go into the municipal jails and speak to mothers there and shame the authorities with the details of what is going on for thousands of women.” Pam Ross
Jeannetta Maclin, 23 has now been charged with two counts of abuse or neglect of a child and two counts of endangering the welfare of a child. Officers say Maclin left her children home alone while she left to work an eight-hour shift in Creve Coeur, and that's when the fire happened.
Charges against struggling mother make situation worse
The tragic fire that endangered two small sons of Jeannetta Maclin has been made worse by charging her with felony neglect, child abuse and child endangerment ("Mother who left sons alone charged after apartment fire," February 13).
The mother was put in a no-win situation. She must work, yet her pay would not allow her enough money for child care. Her children would be better served by supporting the mother than by putting them in foster care. The mother was clearly abandoned by the father of the children and her family.
She had those children as a very young woman. Where has the society been while she was working to support her sons? America has voided the issue of child care since President Richard Nixon took office. Congress had passed a comprehensive child care bill with large support from both parties in 1971. Nixon called conservative activist Phyllis Schlafly to ask her advice. She told him to veto the bill and he did. Nixon is dead, but we should be charging Schlafly with child neglect and abandonment.
Maclin needs our support, not our punishment. Don't cripple people then laugh at the way they walk. This mother wasn't out at a bar drinking, she was going to work at a low-wage job. Give her some support and give her back her children. We should be adopting this family, not separating them.
Pam Ross, VFA Treasurer • St. Louis
Universal Child Care
In 1971, a national
almost became law.
Just over 50 years ago, in a house beside the Hudson river, a woman in her mid-30’s, Betty Goldstein Friedan, struggled in isolation, against impossible, ancient, even invisible glass-ceiling barriers, to write a book which in turn would ignite a blaze, that would finally change the world. But in the beginning, in this suburban beautiful spot, her path was steep, lonely, and up-hill.
My students and most young people today can barely imagine the sleepy, patriarchal Eisenhower years of the 1950’s. As Friedan remembered: Men headed every institution; “there was no “woman’s vote;” women voted as their husbands did. No pollster of political candidate talked about “women’s issues”; women were not taken that seriously…, did not take themselves seriously. Abortion was a word not printed in newspapers; it was a sleazy crime, that shamed and terrified and often killed women, and whose practitioners could go to jail.” “…Men all over the planet took for granted their right to beat or abuse their wives.”
Friedan had worked as a journalist until, she remembers, being “fired from a newspaper job, for being pregnant.” Now she was struggling uneasily, to live the life of a middle-class American housewife. “I like other women thought there was something wrong with me, because I didn’t have an orgasm waxing the kitchen floor. We didn’t admit it to each other if we felt there should be more in life than peanut butter sandwiches with the kids. “
A turning point came when in 1957 she collected 200 questionnaires from other Smith college classmates. As she read of how her well-educated friends and contemporaries had fared in life since college, wheels began to turn in her mind. She began to think, to read, and to write.
Today's most heated literary arguments uphold the legacy of Kate Millett's
Kate Millett's 'Sexual Politics
BY MAGGIE DOHERTY
March 23, 2016
One morning in 1970, on a day she was to speak at Emory University, Kate Millett—erstwhile sculptor, recent Ph.D. student, and now, to her chagrin, the spokeswoman of the Women’s Liberation Movement—stood up from the breakfast table and promptly vomited all over one of two Persian rugs covering the floors of her Bowery apartment. Her husband, the sculptor Fumio Yoshimura, looked on in dismay. The expensive rug was a new addition to Millett’s life. It had been purchased in a week of “libertine glory,” when Millett spent all of the $800 earned from the sale of her first book, Sexual Politics, on two carpets and an old car.
Soon enough, the book would earn Millett $30,000—at the time, a small fortune. In her own words, she was “shamefully, pointlessly rich.” She was also miserable.
Women & Children First
5233 N. Clark St.
Author Event (Other, Biography)
A candid and insightful memoir by feminist writer and social critic Alida Brill, spanning her life from the modern women's movement in the early 1960s and on to present day, in which she became a leading spokesperson. The book presents her inspirational message and quiet wisdom obtained from her decades at the heart of the women's movement, while at the same time wanting to lead a romantic life.
Dear Princess Grace, Dear Betty:
The Memoir of a Romantic Feminist Hardcover – April 7, 2016
by Alida Brill
A candid and insightful memoir by the feminist writer and social critic Alida Brill, Dear Princess Grace, Dear Betty spans her life from the onset of the modern women's movement in the early 1960s through the second wave in the '70s and '80s and on to the present day, in which she became a leading figure and spokesperson. Her story begins in the postwar early suburban community of Lakewood, California, when, as a young girl, she wrote a letter to her idol, Princess Grace of Monaco; to her astonishment, she received a reply.
Following this cornerstone event of her young years came the arrival of Barbie, in 1959, who represented an entirely different kind of woman in her stylish looks and zebra-striped swimsuit. Then, in 1963, the publication of The Feminine Mystique by Betty Friedan caused a seismic shift in the Brill household, propelling her mother into a life of feminism, and inspiring Alida to become a writer and steering her own life to a career s a social critic and feminist advocate.
Other Signing Events:
National Susan B. Anthony Museum and House
17 Madison Street
Monday, December 5
Luncheon lecture at 12:00 p.m.
Tea lecture at 2:00 p.m.
Landmark Decision Allowed Girls to Play Little League
Before Title IX There Was Maria Pepe Waiting
'His Turn At Bat'
By pitching in the spring of 1972, Maria Pepe became the first girl in more than two decades to even try to participate in one of America’s most beloved youth pastimes. Little League’s national powers-that-be moved quickly to remove her from competition.The National Organization for Women brought a 1973 suit on behalf of Pepe’s right to play and the NJ Division on Civil Rights sided with Maria.
It is difficult to remember the day I knew I was a feminist because all of my life, I was involved in cutting-edge-of-change issues. My first conscious “aha” moment came in May 1971 when I attended a meeting in Ann Chud’s living room in Dallas, Texas, where a group of 14 had been invited to talk about our lives, our needs, our restrictions and what we could do about them.
Ann had told us: “Once a year SMU gives us a feast with its Symposium on the Education of Women for Social and Political Leadership, but the rest of the year we starve.” So, how could we make the banquet last all year?
March 15, 2016
I would like to update you on our progress on the involvement of VFA in the museum and library collection currently being created at the New York Historical Society.
We are still so excited that this outstanding institution will enthusiastically feature our Second Wave artifacts and stories in its developing Center for the Study of Women’s History.
VFA establishes partnership with
Center for the
Study of Women's History
at the New York Historical Society
We have had some extremely positive meetings with Dr. Valerie Paley, director of the Center and vice president of the Society, and we are making progress in finalizing an agreement and clarifying procedures. My hope last January when I made the announcement was that things would be underway within a few weeks. I should have remembered that institutional arrangements are always complex: this is a whole new venture for the Society, and the protocol and forms needed are taking longer than expected. Dr. Paley wrote a few days ago, assuring us that, “We have a draft of the so-called ‘protocol’ which would need to be discussed and ratified by our collections committee. They meet periodically and the next meeting is June 1, 2016. It seems I cannot speed up that glacial process but once they sign off we should be good to go.”
So please do not be discouraged. It would be helpful if you line up your proposed donations and prepare their back-stories. Fortunately the Society is both a museum and a library, so your written material—records, books, accounts—will be welcome in the library’s archives just as your artifacts might fit into the museum’s exhibit plans.
Thanks for your patience and your passion.
Resurrects the buried history of the outrageous, often brilliant women who founded the modern women’s movement from
1966 to 1971.
The purpose of Veteran Feminists of America (VFA) is to honor, document and preserve the accomplishments of women and men active in the feminist movement, to educate the public about the importance of changes brought about by the women's revolution, and to inspire future generations.
Veteran Feminists of America, Inc. is a
501(c)(3) charitable organization.
Veteran Feminists of America, Inc. * 18 Aberdeen Place, St. Louis, MO 63105 * Eleanor Pam, President * Jacqui Ceballos, Founder *