Tag Archives: Feminism

Hero of the Week Award: January 27, The Amelia Bloomer Project

27 Jan

Hero of the Week

This week’s HWA goes to the great work of the American Library Association’s Feminist Task Force. Every year, they receive hundreds of nominations for the Amelia Bloomer Project, a list of the best feminist books for young readers, ages birth through 18.  The list is subdivided by age group and fiction / non-fiction. This important work identifies books that emphasize strong girls and women and the contributions they make to improving our society and themselves. The 2011 selections were just announced this week, introduced by this wonderful historical quote from Amelia Earhart:

One of my favorite phobias is that girls, especially those whose tastes aren’t routine, often don’t get a fair break… It has come down through the generations, an inheritance of age-old customs which produced the corollary that women are bred to timidity.

From the amazing list of honorees, the Task Force also selects a Top Ten each year. Here are the 2011 winners:

  1. Addie on the Inside by James Howe (Atheneum Books for Young Readers)
  2. Basketball Belles: How Two Teams and One Scrappy Player Put Women’s Hoops on the Map by Sue Macy, illus. by Matt Collins (Holiday House)
  3. Beauty Queens by Libba Bray (Scholastic)
  4. Deadly by Julie Chibbaro (Atheneum Books for Young Readers)
  5. The Dressmaker of Khair Khana: Five Sisters, One Remarkable Family, and the Woman Who Risked Everything to Keep Them Safe by Gayle Tzemach Lemmon (Harper Collins)
  6. Ruth Bader Ginsburg: U. S. Supreme Court Justice by Paul McCaffrey (Chelsea House)
  7. Tillie the Terrible Swede: How One Woman, a Sewing Needle, and a Bicycle Changed History by Sue Stauffacher, illus. by Sarah McMenemy (Alfred A. Knopf)
  8. Women Heroes of World War II: 26 Stories of Espionage, Sabotage, Resistance, and Rescue by Kathryn J. Atwood (Chicago Review Press)
  9. Wheels of Change: How Women Rode the Bicycle to Freedom (With a Few Flat Tires Along the Way) by Sue Macy (National Geographic)
  10. When She Woke by Hillary Jordan (Algonquin Books)

Congratulations to all the selected books and a big thank you to the Task Force and for their hard work in identifying books for all young readers that show the power of girls and women.


My Husband Married Maude

23 Jul

Me Giving the Look!

When I first started dating my husband, the librarian, I was not certain we could be married. He was a white Presbyterian WASP who had been married to two different women before dating me.  He was truly god’s frozen chosen.  I, on the other hand, am a cross between a “big black bitch” as one of my former students referred to me, and a loud-mouthed liberal Jewish/Catholic who looked and sounded like Maude with a southern accent.

Oy! My poor husband!  Who knew that 12 years later we would make each other so happy, or as he puts it: “We are stuck with each other.”  My poor husband has to endure my tireless political tirades against bigots like John Boehner, Michele Bachmann and her “straight” husband and the rest of the misogynistic, homophobic bigots that get me so angry that I start to spit fire.  Yes, my husband, the calm ever wise librarian, married a strident feminist, LGBT/Black activist Bitch.

Right now we are at our favorite Inn on the Oregon Coast.  We are having a perfect evening, despite the ugly turn our lovely dinner took. You see, the wonderful restaurant at the Inn now has the most horrific homophobic waiter. He refused to come to our table, so the rest of the staff had to do his job. When we talked to the Chef, whom we love, and praised his culinary triumph (I do not exaggerate here) we also had to give the unfortunate feedback that the waiter  was so homophobic that he would not even come to the table.  The Chef was not surprised in the least, but was clearly sad to hear our feedback. We dined at our favorite Inn in Cannon Beach, Oregon.  We will continue to go to this Inn because everyone else there is quite lovely to us. I do hope they take the waiter to task and give him some sensitivity training.  You can’t “catch” gay, just as you can’t “catch” straight.  If he were to walk into any library, he would be attended to regardless of his religion.  He has a job–he is a waiter, as in wait on people. He needs to be able to do his job regardless of people’s sexual orientation!  Just as I would hope a pharmacist would fill a prescription for a woman, regardless of his religious beliefs and not allow her to bleed to death.

Honestly, we had a lovely evening and my husband was quick to remind me that we would not allow the behavior of one homophobic bigot ruin our time.  God will get you for that Walter!

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