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women's history


  • Originally published 07/20/2013

    Helen Thomas, blunt chronicler of presidents from Kennedy era to Obama

    WASHINGTON — Helen Thomas, whose keen curiosity, unquenchable drive and celebrated constancy made her a trailblazing White House correspondent in a press corps dominated by men and later the dean of the White House briefing room, died Saturday at home in Washington. She was 92.Her death was announced by the Gridiron Club, one of Washington’s leading news societies. Ms. Thomas was a past president of that organization.Ms. Thomas covered every president from John F. Kennedy to Barack Obama for United Press International and, later, Hearst Newspapers. To her colleagues, she was the unofficial but undisputed head of the press corps — her status ratified by her signature line at the end of every White House news conference, “Thank you, Mr. President.”...

  • Originally published 06/03/2013

    Ann J. Lane, pioneer in women's history dies at 81

    Ann J. Lane, 81, of New York City, died on May 27, 2013. She was born in Brooklyn on July 27, 1931, the daughter of Harry and Betty Brown Lane. Lane completed all of her schooling in New York City. She earned a BA from Brooklyn College in English in 1952, an MA in sociology from New York University in 1958, and a PhD in history from Columbia University in 1968.Lane served as Assistant Professor of History at Douglass College of Rutgers University from 1968 to 1971, and then as Professor of History and Chair of the American Studies Program at John Jay College of Criminal Justice, City University of New York, from 1971 to 1983. She was a research fellow at The Mary Ingraham Bunting Institute of Radcliffe College, Harvard University from 1977-1983.Early in her career, Lane specialized in southern and African American History, the fruits of which appeared in two works published in 1971, The Brownsville Affair: National Outrage and Black Reaction, a monograph on a 1906 racial incident involving black soldiers and white citizens, and The Debate Over Slavery: Stanley Elkins and His Critics, an edited work on an important historiographical controversy for which she also wrote the introduction.

  • Originally published 03/25/2013

    Making the Historical Documentary "Makers"

    Professor Betsy West on the set of Makers. Credit: Columbia University School of Journalism.Each time a woman stands up for herself, without knowing it possibly, without claiming it, she stands up for all women.--Maya AngelouThis past February marked the fiftieth anniversary of the publication of Betty Friedan’s now classic The Feminine Mystique, a study of what Friedan called “the problem that had no name” -- the widespread unhappiness of many women who felt stymied by traditional female roles and had few options for meaningful work outside the family.  Friedan’s trailblazing book, with her call for educational and occupational reforms, has been seen as inspiring the modern women’s movement, and the ensuing conversation led Friedan to found the National Organization for Women.

  • Originally published 02/04/2013

    Ruth Rosen: What Will It Take to End Violence Against Women?

    Ruth Rosen, a former columnist for the Los Angeles Times, is a Professor Emeriti of History at U.C. Davis and a Scholar in Residence at the Center for the Study of Right-Wing Movements at U.C. Berkeley. Her most recent book is The World Split Open: How the Modern Women’s Movement Changed America.Her father had a dream that his daughter would be educated and, like his sons, enjoy civil rights and liberties.  He was one of those unsung fathers who have played an important role in promoting the goals of feminism, yet remain invisible among the many more fathers who cannot embrace change in their societies.   

  • Originally published 02/03/2013

    Women in Combat: Not New, but a Milestone Nonetheless

    U.S. Navy Operations Specialist 1st Class Megan Garcia, left, tactical operations watchstander for Provincial Reconstruction Team (PRT) Farah, provides security at a key leader engagement with the Director of Women's Affairs in Farah City, Jan. 29. Credit: Flickr/U.S. Navy.

  • Originally published 01/25/2013

    Actually, Women Have Served in Combat Before

    Lyudmila Pavlichenko, the leading female Soviet sniper of World War II.After more than a year of planning, Defense Secretary Leon E. Panetta overturned the ban on women's ability to serve in combat roles in the United States military. Panetta's removal of the ban followed an official recommendation by the Joint Chiefs of Staff chairman General Martin E. Dempsey. This decision to allow women to occupy the front lines came yesterday as a formal gesture following the last decade of women's unofficial service in combat positions; since 2001, around 280,000 women have been deployed to Iraq and Afghanistan.While the Senate Armed Services Committee may have an opportunity to reverse the decision through legislative means, prospects look hopeful for this shift in the military's stance, which was largely a decision made internal to the military itself. By May 15 of this year, the different branches of the armed services are expected to present specific implementation plans for their integration of women into combat roles, including requests for exceptions to the new policy.

  • Originally published 01/16/2013

    In Memoriam: Gerda Lerner

    Gerda Lerner in an 2012 interview. Credit: UW-Madison.Gerda Lerner, eminent scholar and pioneer in the field of women’s history, passed away on January 2, 2013, at age 92. There are so many ways and reasons to remember Gerda Lerner: her activism on behalf of women and women historians; her invaluable scholarship; her irascibility in the face of injustice; her demands on herself and on the profession; her inspiration and her gifts.

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