Weekend Reading on Women's Representation August 21, 2020

By Cynthia Richie Terrell on August 21, 2020


Mosaic Theater Company's rendition of 'The Agitators' with Marni Penning as Susan B. Anthony and Ro Boddie as Frederick Douglass - Photo by Stan Barough

Dear fans of women's representation,
On Tuesday, August 18th, we celebrated the centennial of the ratification of the 19th amendment to the U.S. Constitution that expanded the franchise dramatically and fundamentally altered the practice of democracy in these United States.
To mark this milestone, the president pardoned Susan B Anthony for her 'crime' of voting - there were polite stories on this strange event in The Washington Post and Politico. While most agree that Anthony would have dismissed this 'pardon' as political theater, there is a deeper story about the suffrage movement that requires not a 'pardon' but a grounded discussion of the history and present day movement for women's equality. There were a number of very thoughtful responses to The New York Times editorial last Sunday on the suffrage movement that you can find here. I highly recommend the play The Agitators by Mat Smart for a deep dive into the decades-long debate between Susan B Anthony and Frederick Douglass that brings alive their shared passion for equality and their frustration with one another and the movement/s they led:

Read more

Weekend Reading on Women's Representation August 14, 2020

By Cynthia Richie Terrell on August 14, 2020


Sen. Kamala Harris after being introduced by presumptive Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden as his running mate in Wilmington, Delaware., on August 12, 2020 - Toni Sandys / The Washington Post via Getty Images


Dear fans of women's representation,
Until this week, four women - Lucretia Mott (1848), Tonie Nathan (1972), Geraldine Ferraro (1984) & Sarah Palin (2008) - had been selected as vice presidential running mates. Former Vice President Joe Biden's selection of Senator Kamala Harris as his running mate brings that number to five and has led to a number of very interesting articles and news stories about this milestone in the annals of women's history and leadership.

Read more

Weekend Reading on Women's Representation August 7, 2020

By Cynthia Richie Terrell on August 07, 2020


2020 Booker Prize nominees from the Booker Prize website
Dear women's representation team members,
You can read a sharper-looking version of this missive on Ms Magazine.
Normalizing women's power and leadership can take many forms -- my favorite example from this week is the number of women authors selected as finalists for the coveted 2020 Booker Prize. According to this story in Vulture, nine of the 13 nominees - selected from a pool of 162 - are women:

Read more

Weekend Reading on Women's Representation July 31, 2020

By Cynthia Richie Terrell on July 31, 2020


Government News
Dear fans of women's representation,
As a reminder, if you would like to read a nicely laid out version of this blog you can hop to Ms Magazine though there are always a few extra stories that don't make it in by the Ms deadline!
The countdown to the big election continues and there is a lot going on in U.S. politics but this story by Judy Skatssoon in Government News about a campaign in Australia by male CEOs to advance women's representation at the local government level offers a model for the kind of conversation - and action - that must happen to make serious & enduring progress toward gender parity:

Read more

Weekend Reading on Women's Representation July 24, 2020

By Cynthia Richie Terrell on July 24, 2020


Cover of the August issue of National Geographic celebrating the suffrage centennial
Dear fans of women's representation,
July 24th marks the 100th anniversary of women's equality champion Bella Abzug's birth and marks the midway point of the suffrage centennial. The August issue of National Geographic Magazine pays tribute to the many women like Abzug who have shaped and continue to shape the conversation about women's rights and representation. Sadly the content is behind a paywall but here is a snippet from the long and rich piece written by Rachel Hartigan:

Read more

Weekend Reading on Women's Representation July 17, 2020

By Cynthia Richie Terrell on July 17, 2020


Suffragists Sojourner Truth, Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Susan B Anthony, Lucretia Mott, and Ida B Wells painted by Melanie Humble

Dear fans of women's representation,

This week marks several milestones in the long struggle for women's equality: on July 14, 1917 sixteen women from the National Women's Party were arrested while picketing at the White House in favor of universal suffrage; July 16th marked the birthday of  suffragist Ida B Wells who was born in 1862; noted Quaker author Jessamyn West was born on July 18, 1902; and the Seneca Falls Women's Rights Convention was held July 19-20, 1848. I have been thinking about the tenacity and creativity of the women's rights advocates who came before us and wondering how future generations will judge us? Will our daughters' daughters adore us as the lyrics promise in Mary Poppins? I sure hope so...

Read more

Weekend Reading on Women's Representation July 10, 2020

By Cynthia Richie Terrell on July 10, 2020


Photo courtesy of Gender Avenger Christina Morillo, via Pexels (cropped)
Dear women's representation enthusiasts,
News of Supreme Court decisions and the sweltering heat of Washington, DC are hard to avoid but there have also been some developments related to women's representation that caught my eye this week. I was very glad to see that Gina Glantz and the team at Gender Avenger have updated their tool to track the representation of women on panels and more with a new setting that tracks women of color. Here is an excerpt from the blog about the launch:

Read more

Weekend Reading on Women's Representation July 2, 2020

By Cynthia Richie Terrell on July 02, 2020


Getty Images: 116th Congress
Dear women's representation enthusiasts,
There were several key primaries this week with fascinating wins and losses for women candidates along with a number of landmark Supreme Court decisions that will dominate the headlines for weeks to come. In the midst of all this news I was very glad to read the latest report from Sarah Bryner from the Center for Responsive Politics who writes about the likely composition of the 117th Congress. While there have been a number of stories about the number of women running, Sarah's report examines the prospects for these women to actually win. It's so important to remember that the power of incumbency, the challenges of raising money, and our antiquated electoral system fortify the status quo:


Read more

Bostock v. Clayton County, GA: What this Decision Means for Women’s Representation

By Faith Campbell on July 01, 2020

By Faith Campbell and Claire Halffield

Image of the Supreme Court of the United States in sunlight

On June 12, the Supreme Court affirmed the rights of the LGBTQIA+ community to take action if they experience discrimination in the workplace (Bostock v. Clayton County). In response, RepresentWomen (RW) wants to clarify its stance on the subject of the recognition of transgender or gender non-conforming individuals. The work in which RW engages goes hand-in-hand with advocacy groups working towards equal rights for members of the LGBTQIA+ community. RepresentWomen supports and acknowledges this decision as an essential aspect of our mission, to strengthen our democracy by advancing reforms that break down barriers to ensure more women can run, win, serve, and lead.

Read more