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CWLU Herstory Project News Archive
December 2000 -March 2002


Women and Children First Bookstore has a Great February Line-up
Chicago's Women and Children First Bookstore will host a number of authors this month including:

Feb. 20
7:30 p.m.
Nuala O'Faolain: My Dream of You
Newly out in paperback, My Dream of You is the fiction debut of Nuala O'Faolain, whose memoir Are You Somebody? was a critically acclaimed bestseller. My Dream of You tells the story of a London travel writer who returns to her native Ireland to research the story of a scandalous affair between an English landlord and his Irish servant 150 years ago. Her research leads her into her own affair-and a story that explores the extremes of passion, the depths of loneliness, and the resilience of the human heart.

Wed., Feb. 27
7:30 p.m.
Judy Blunt: Breaking Clean
Judy Blunt learned early how to "rope and ride and jockey a John Deere … but also to bake bread and can vegetables and reserve my opinion when the men were talking." These lessons carried her through 36-hour blizzards, devastating prairie fires, and a period of extreme isolation that once threatened the life of her infant daughter. When she decided to leave the ranch and her 12-year marriage to a man from a neighboring ranch, her three children were all she could call her own. Advance readers of this debut memoir have called it "heartbreaking, mesmerizing, dramatic," "elegantly written and achingly honest," and "a magnificent achievement."

For other programs and more information about Women and Children First Bookstore visit their website at www.womenandchildrenfirst.com

Women & Children First Bookstore is located at: 5233 N. Clark St., Chicago, IL 60640, (773) 769-9299.

Feminist theologian Rita Nakashima Brock to Lead Weekend Forum at Winnetka Congregational Church February 22-24
Rita was the winner of the 1988 Crossroad Women's Studies award for her book "Journeys by Heart" and has a new book soon to be published on "the search for what saves us." Her new book will challenge traditional understandings of Jesus as "savior" and the way Christian theology has perpetuated violence. E-mail Allen Mothershed at allenm@wcc-joinus.org for more details.

Thursday, February 28
Opening Reception
Presentation: Memories of Love and War
Kathleen Cleaver
4:30 p.m. - 6:30 p.m.
Illinois Room, CCC, 750 S. Halsted, Chicago, IL

This program will feature Kathleen Cleaver, a major voice in the Black Liberation movements of the 1960's and 70's with former husband Eldridge Cleaver. Cleaver continues to speak out against racism, sexism, and economic inequality. Cleaver will talk about her personal story of transformation during the tumultuous revolutionary movements of the '60's and '70's. She will also discuss the feminist role in the race-based civil rights struggle of the Black Panthers. Her writings and essays have appeared in numerous magazines, books, and newspapers and her memoir, Memories of Love and War, is forthcoming from Random House. Cleaver's presentation will begin at 5:00 p.m. Free catered reception.

Suzan Erem is on the Road Promoting Labor Pains, a Book about the Gritty Life of a Union Organizer
Herstory Project member Suzan Erem is on tour promoting Labor Pains: Life Inside America's New Union Movement based on her personal experience as a union organizer in Chicago. It's an insider's compassionate but unromanticized account of the complexities of working class resistance. Suzan recently joined the Herstory Project to add her writing talents to our efforts.

Thursday, October 4th, 8pm, 15 S. Dubuque
St., T: (319) 337-2681 for info.

Amy Laiken and Sara Bornstein Among Those to be Honored by the Chicago Abortion Federation.
The Chicago Abortion Federation(CAF) provides information, referral, and direct financial assistance to low income women seeking safe, affordable abortions. CAF also does extensive public education and lobbying.
Former CWLUers Amy Laiken and Sarah Bornstein will be among those honored by CAF at an October 19 celebration held at the Hot House from 6-9 pm, 1 East Balbo. Call 312-663-0336 for ticket info. There will be music, food and a special appearance by mystery writer Sara Paretsky.
Amy and Sara were among the founders of the Chicago Abortion Fund. They are also members of the CWLU Herstory Project

Conference on the Intellectual Contributions of the Hull House Magazine to be held September 21-22 at the University of Illinois at Chicago
Though best known for the settlement house work of people like Jane Addams, Hull House on Chicago's Westside also published a magazine for a brief time. Entitled Hull House Magazine and the Chicago Cultural Front. 1930-1945;the conference will examine the writers and artists associated with Hull House.
For more details visit the Hull House Museum website. Project member Peg Strobel is one of the organizers of the conference.

Digital Eve Chicago will Hold its Official Kickoff on September 13.
Chicagoland's online community for women in technology is holding its first big public event Thursday evening September 13 at the Goodman Theater. Digital Eve is a network that helps women in technology with technical and professional issues in that still largely male dominated field. Former CWLUers Estelle Carol and Betsy Martens are both active in Digital Eve. For more info visit the Digital Eve website. You may view their very cool poster HERE.

New Mexico Women's Summit to be held in Albuquerque August 25
It's time to gather again for the 2nd annual NEW MEXICO WOMEN'S SUMMIT. Women from across the state will be gathering to participate in workshops,entertainment and networking with other women and exploring those issues forwhich we have passion.
You can join a growing network of action circles or form one of your own, attend an informative and empowering workshop on Risk-Taking for Women, Creating Our Own Destinies, How to Network, Using Creative Visualization and/or The Legislative Process, and help us elect a new slate of leaders for the coming year.
To REGISTER contact Kathi Emmel at 841-8920, ext. 104 or email info@nmwomen2000.org. Herstory Project member Joan Berman is involved with this event.

COST: General registration - $35 (before Aug. 18)
Students and Seniors - $10
List of 2000 members - $25
General registration after Aug. 18 - $45
PLACE AND TIME: Saturday, August 25, 8:00 - 4:30 at Central United Methodist Church, 1615 Copper (near University)
FREE CHILDCARE is being provided by licensed childcare workers.

LadyFest Midwest Chicago will Rock the Windy City August 16-19
Ladyfest Midwest Chicago (LMC) is a multi-disciplinary, four-day fest that will showcase the work of female artists, performers, musicians, and activists primarily from Chicago and its surrounding regions. LMC aims to promote women from diverse backgrounds working in the fields of the creative arts and community building. LMC functions as an entirely volunteer-driven, community-based, non-profit organization, and although entirely organized by women, it is open to all people regardless of age, race, or gender.
The goals of Ladyfest are as follows:

  • To increase the visibility of women from the Midwest working in the arts and activism
  • To provide an open forum for women to discuss/debate contemporary issues
  • To help foster and sustain the community of women in and around Chicago
  • To fill the streets of Chicago's Wicker Park, Logan Square and Humboldt
  • Park neighborhoods with four days of the most exciting and innovative female-driven events ever to hit Chicago !

Site visits increase as we work on publicity.
Site visits have been steadily increasing since December of 2000, the first full month we kept web statistics. We had 192 hits on our homepage in November of 2000. As of today, May 28, we have 476 this month with another week to go in May. We are steadily e-mailing feminist and women's studies websites, asking them to link to us. The response has been generally positive and the results show in increased traffic on our site. Site visitation trends can be misleading and have their ups and downs. However, we are cautiously optimistic. We believe that the key to return visits is to get women's studies teachers to use our site as a resource for their students.
After we finish going through our list of women's studies programs, we will contact university libraries, online historical archives, and academic history departments. Its a slow but steady process. The more sites who link to us, the higher we rank in search engines and the more people who find us independently and link to us without our prompting. A mass postal mailing to women's studies departments is planned.

A Call for Volunteers for Video Project on Female Sexuality.
In 1972 Julie Gustafson, inspired by the widespread consciousness raising groups within the feminist movement, produced "The Politics of Intimacy", a video where 9 women (together with Dr. Sherfy, one of the first doctors to write about female sexuality) discuss their sexual experiences.
In these 30 years society has made advances concerning different issues, such as sexuality, modifying the traditional standards and beliefs to accept that female sexual response differs in important ways from male sexual response. But has it been widespread accepted? Is female sexuality today as healthy as it should be or do myths still prevail?
Women Project 2001 is looking for VOLUNTEERS who want to discuss their feelings, opinions and experiences for a documentary video. If you want to participate, but prefer not to be identified, don't worry, your face won't be shown.
E-mail Nelly at womenproject2001@yahoo.com for more info.

Are you a college student in LA who loves political graphics and is looking for a summer internship? Well read on.....
The Center for the Study of Political Graphics (CSPG) has received a grant from the Getty Grant Program to hire two undergraduate students for full-time ten week internships this summer. Getty internships are intended for members of groups under represented in the visual arts professions, related to the visual arts, particularly individuals of Latino/a, Native American, African American, Asian, and Pacific Islander descent.
A number of Chicago Women's Graphics Collective posters are archived at the Center and we consider the CSPG a sister organization.
Applicants must have completed at least one semester of college by June 2001, not graduate before December 2001, and either be residents of Los Angeles, or attend college in the Los Angeles area. Interns will be introduced to all aspect of running a small non-profit organization, work on upcoming exhibitions, learn how to use a museum database program, and much more.
For more information on the internships, please see their web site www.politicalgraphics.org ('Job Opportunities' link at bottom of main menu page) or email them at cspg@politicalgraphics.org

Chicago Researcher Needs Lesbian Subjects: Greater Chicago Area Only
The Chicago Health and Life Experiences of Women Study (CHLEW)is one of the first and very few studies of lesbian health funded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH). To improve the chances that other studies such as CHLEW are funded, and to improve our understanding of lesbian health the project is recruiting study participants.
One of the challenges of doing research with lesbians is recruiting a diverse sample that is at least somewhat representative of the racial/ethnic, age, education, and socioeconomic profile of women in Chicago. Almost all lesbian health research in the past has included predominately white, middle-class, well-educated women who are 30 to 40 years old. The CHLEW Study has interviewed over 370 lesbians thus far, including more than 140 African American, 160 white, and 60 Latinas. More than 75 women in the study are over 50 years old.
CHLEW hopes that recruiting a diverse sample will demonstrate to NIH and other funding agencies that these traditionally underrepresented women are willing to participate in research. In addition, and most importantly, having high-quality research data about the health behaviors, health concerns, and health-care experiences of lesbians will provide health care practitioners with much needed information to plan more culturally sensitive and appropriate health care.
CHLEW needs at least 75 more lesbians to participate in the study. Although they still need women of color and older women, their greatest need is to reach a target of 450 participants by the end of the summer. All women who are 18 years or older, living in the greater Chicago metropolitan area, and identifying as lesbian are eligible to participate. The study involves a confidential face-to-face interview, and participants receive $35 to compensate them for their time.
Interested women can call Tonda L. Hughes at 312-996-2504 to ask questions or request a brochure that describes the study, or they can view the CHLEW website for more details: http://www.uic.edu/nursing/womenstudy

Lesbian of color over 50? Here's a chance to tell your story.
Two California researchers wish to receive personal narratives from lesbians of color over fifty for a new anthology. These narratives need to address the intersections of diverse issues and attitudes: culture, religion, ethics, family (parents, siblings, relatives, as well as husbands, children and grandchildren), politics, age, career and colleagues, friendships, same-sex spouses, family of same-sex spouses, and other attitudes that have a clear and important impact on one's decision to self-disclose.
The form should be a personal narrative that may include other genres (poetry, lyrics, diary entries, letters, and so forth). Manuscripts should not exceed twenty double-spaced, typed pages. Please use 12 point font and submit a Macintosh diskette, using Word 5.0 or later and two hard copies. The deadline for submission is July 1, 2001. Early submissions are encouraged. Include your email address as well as contact information.
Send to:
Elizabeth R. Kessler
Department of English
California State University at Northridge 18111, Nordhoff Street Northridge, CA 91330-8248
For inquiries and more detailed information, email elizabeth.kessler@csun.edu or mgonzalez@uh.edu.

The National Women's Music Festival Scheduled for June 21-24 at Ball State University in Muncie, IN
Muncie, Indiana will be the gathering place for the 27th Annual National Women's Musical Festival from June 21-24. Discount tickets are available until May 30. Besides the diverse women's music which the Festival is known for, there will be workshops, sports competitions, drama presentations, video showings and much, much more. Visit their website at wiaonline.org/nwmf/ for more info.

New Production of Jane: Abortion and the Underground is slated for Madison, Wisconsin beginning June 7
On June 7th 2001 Millennium Theater presents Jane: Abortion and the Underground by Paula Kamen a play about a group of Chicago area feminists who safely performed over 10,000 abortions between 1969 and 1973. Mary Ellen O’Hara is the director. "Jane" was the nickname for the Abortion Counseling Service, a workgroup of the Chicago Women's Liberation Union. A number of former CWLU members and associates are portrayed in the play.
Performances will be held Thursdays and Fridays, June 7-8 and 14-15 at 8 pm and Saturdays June 9th and 16th at 3 pm and 8 pm and Sunday June 10th at 5 pm at the Bartell Theatre (formerly the Esquire) 113 E Mifflin St. The June 14th performance is a benefit for Planned Parenthood. Tickets are $12 for all shows.
We will have more info including contact phone numbers and the play's webpage as they become available. You may read the press release HERE.

Women! Attend the Rebirth of the Peace Movement in Illinois.
Illinois Peace Action has organized a Women's Retreat and Training that will take place at First United Church of Oak Park, on Saturday, June 9th from 10:00 a.m. until 4:00 p.m. Coffee, muffins, and lunch provided.
The goal of the day-long event is to generate dialogue between older and newer generations of female activists, build leadership and facilitating skills in order to ensure gender balance within the organization. This is imperative to Illinois Peace Action's efforts to expose the connections between increased military spending and the cuts in social spending which are felt by people of all strata in this country.
They encourage all women to come and if possible, bring a budding sister activist! Mothers- bring your babes ! The church is nursery is available and if it's nice out there is Austin Gardens nearby. If you do need childcare please let them know for how many, so they can recruit people for the children's activities.
For more information and to register please call Illinois Peace Action at (312)939-3316.

Party with Paula Kamen and Sandi Wisenberg on May 30 at the Chopin Theater 7 pm in Chicago
A multimedia extravaganza-palooza and party is being sponsored by the Guild Complex on Wednesday, May 30 at 7 pm to celebrate the release of Paula Kamen's "Her Way: Young Women Remake the Sexual Revolution" and Sandi Wisenberg's "The Sweetheart Is In," a scintillating collection of fiction (on religion, sex, activism, all the good stuff) just out from TriQuarterly Books/Northwestern U Press (slwisenberg.com).
Sandi, creative non-fiction editor of Another Chicago Magazine, is a frequent contributor to the Chicago Reader and many other publications, and teaches a variety of writing classes throughout the city and suburbs.
The MC will be internationally acclaimed musician/rock star Ellen Rosner (ellenrosner.com), who will also perform. Also featured: modern folk musician Donna Adler (who is putting out a new CD for June, Alta Vista), poet Simone Muench (author of The Air Lost in Breathing and an associate editor of ACM) and writers Karen Wilson and Susan McLaughlin Karp. Cost is $5, $3 for students and seniors. For more info, phone 773-227-6117.
Paula Kamen is a member of the Herstory Project. She invites you to visit her website at www.paulakamen.com.

Susan Abod debut s her new CD with a benefit concert.
Susan Abod invites you to attend "In the Moment", a CD Release concert and celebration to benefit the Community Art Center, Inc. in Cambridge MA. Susan is a Herstory Project member and the former lead singer of the Chicago Women's Liberation Rock Band. This is her first solo CD release. We have heard clips from it and Susan sounds better than ever.
The concert is Saturday, May 19, 2001 at 8 PM, Little Kresge Auditorium, MIT, 48 Massachusetts Ave, Cambridge, MA. Tickets: $15.00 General Admission, $12.00 Low Income. Available in advance at: The Community Art Center, Inc., 119 Windsor Street, Cambridge, MA Monday-Friday 10am-6PM and at the door the night of performance.
To order concert tickets by mail, send checks by May 15th, payable to: The Community Art Center, Inc., Attn.: Susan CD Release Concert, PO Box 425554, Cambridge, MA 02142. INFORMATION: 617-868-7100
To order Susan's new CD, click HERE.

On the road with Paula Kamen: For a Her Way book tour updated schedule, please click HERE
Paula Kamen, author of "Jane: Abortion and the Underground" and a Herstory Project contributor, is on the road again to promote her latest book, Her Way: Young Women Remake the Sexual Revolution. The book has gotten good reviews from Publishers Weekly, Booklist, Nerve, Amazon.com. and the Chicago Tribune. The book details how today's young women are exploring the often contradictory sexual freedoms unknown to previous generations. Based on personal interviews and drawing heavily from academic research, the book is both informative and deeply moving.
You may order the book online through our Feminist Marketplace. Paula will be back in Chicago on March 29 at the Harold Washington library at 5:15 pm for a public appearance complete with C-Span book taping. For a complete schedule, click HERE.
A Chicago highlight was a reading at Women and Children First Bookstore to an SRO crowd on January 25. Paula answered questions from her appreciative audience and joined Herstory Project supporters for a late night snack and some intense feminist conversation at a nearby restaurant. She is very upbeat about the book's reception and is working hard to promote it across the country. We hope to post an audio clip from one of her radio interviews .
Paula also appeared on WBEZ's (91.5 FM) "848" show at 10 a.m Wednesday, Jan. 17.
Paula's play, "Jane: Abortion and the Underground" is scheduled for a June production in Madison, Wisconsin by the Millennium Theater.
She invites you to visit her website to learn more about "Her Way" and her other projects.

Women's International Net Magazine(WIN)Needs Your Help
WIN is a unique online publication that features feminist writings from all over the entire planet, especially the Third World. Editor Judith Colp Rubin is appealing for advertising and contributions to keep this excellent news source alive and well. The publication reaches 8000 readers a month.
Visit WIN at http://www.winmagazine.org to see how good it really is and to help out if you can.

A call for papers on any aspect of the writings and film of the women's movement of the late 60's and 70's-April 15 deadline!
Women's Liberation: The Grassroots Women's Movement of the 1970's.
Twenty-minute presentations or papers on any aspect of the writings or film of the women's movement of the late 60'sand 70' s. Do the works reflect or initiate movement concerns? Do they contribute to the movement? Can significant comparisons or contrast be made between works of that era and the "first wave" or the "third wave"? Does the language, style, technique reflect and/or further the ideologies of the period. Abstracts or papers due by April 15 for a conference to be held in Atlanta, Georgia on Nov 9-11 2001.
For more info contact:
Nancy M. Whitt, Professor of English
Chair, Department of English
Samford University
Birmingham, AL 35229
Phone: 205-726-2458 Fax: 205-726-2112 E-mail: nmwhitt@samford.edu

Rethinking Our Future: International Women's Day 2001 All-Day Conference held on March 10 in downtown Chicago: Complete Schedule HERE
The all-day IWD conference held at DePaul was a very moving intergenerational multiethnic event. The workshops were of very high quality and at the end of the day, people gathered to express their desire for an ongoing organization that would help link up the diverse groups in Chicago's women's movement. The conference included selections from Eve Ensler's "The Vagina Monologues" which provoked laughter and sighs of self recognition from those in attendance.

Women and Children First Bookstore Goes All Out for Women's History Month: Complete Schedule HERE
The fine folks at Chicago's favorite feminist bookstore lined up an impressive list of discussions and forums. Some highlights included a discussion of the state of Women's Studies on March 7. Herstory Project member Judy Gardiner was among the panelists. On March 14, there was a celebration of Chicago women, honoring a number of people for their contributions. Dr. Alice Dan of the UIC Center for Research on Women & Gender was among those presenting. The Center is the official sponsor of the Herstory Project.
There is plenty more to report, so for information on these and other exciting events, plus a complete March-April schedule, please click HERE.

The UIC Gender and Women's Studies Program sponsors a "Sex and the City" panel and lecture series
Hoping to cast some light on the complexities of urban sexual mores and practices, the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC) Gender and Women's Studies Program and several other University organizations are sponsoring a series of panels and lectures exploring the subject from both modern and historical points of view.
CWLU Herstory Project member Estelle Carol designed the poster for the event.
The series kicked off on February 13, 2001 and runs through April 19. You may find the entire schedule and more info HERE.

CWLU Herstory Project partners with the Center for Research on Women and Gender
The Herstory Project is now officially a partner with the Center for Research on Women and Gender at the University of Illinois at Chicago. We hope that our relationship with this respected research center will help us in our fundraising efforts. Special thanks to Dr. Alice Dan, Director of the Center, for helping facilitate the process. Thanks too to Dr. Margaret "Peg" Strobel for helping us navigate through the complexity of UIC's many programs.

Chicago NOW and the Chicago Foundation for Women commemorated Roe vrs. Wade with a Reproductive Rights Discussion
There was a reception and panel discussion on reproductive rights at Chicago's Harold Washington Library sponsored by the Chicago Foundation for Women and NOW on January 22, 2001. Herstory Project members attended the panel discussion. Discussion focused on the reproductive rights of younger women, minority women and disabled women. Both panelists and audience members expressed anger and dismay about efforts by the Bush administration to restrict women's hard won reproductive rights.

"Rebels With a Cause" played in Chicago to appreciative audiences
This full length documentary film tells the story of the Students for a Democratic Society (SDS), which led many student protests in the 1960's. A number of CWLU members belonged to SDS before joining the women's liberation movement. The film was produced by Helen Garvy. It received a positive review in the Chicago Tribune. You may visit the website for "Rebels with a Cause" at www.sdsrebels.com .
Several former CWLUers attended the packed January 28th Saturday afternoon showing. The audience was very mixed age-wise. After the movie, Amanda Klonsky, daughter of Sue Klonsky, one of the former SDSers featured in the film, got up to announce that several of her associates had just been busted for passing out anti-sweatshop leaflets at a nearby NikeTown. Amanda passed a hat and got money to help bail out her bothers and sisters in struggle. It was an emotional moment of intergenerational solidarity.

"Best of Broadside" nominated for two Grammies
This 5 CD set of some of America's best protest songs and movement anthems features the music of many artists including Pete Seeger, Nina Simone, Phil Ochs, Buffy Sainte-Marie, Tom Paxton, Bernice Johnson Reagon and Malvina Reynolds. Among those featured is Kristin Lems singing her ERA anthem, "We Will Never Give Up". Kristin played at our October benefit and has a song on our site. For more information about this fine collection visit http://bestofbroadside.com.

Herstory Project has changed our web host
We changed our webhost on January 3. Our old web host, Enteract, did a good job, but our new host, Pair Networks, offers more space for less cost and has an e-commerce option. There were some minor technical glitches while the changeover was completed. A few links failed to work and had to be fixed. E-mail us if you see any more problems we missed.

Joan Berman donates more photos
Joan Berman ,
a member the Herstory Project recently lent us slides of the CWLU trip to China for us to scan. Joan also shared some photos from DARE (Direct Action for Rights in Employment).These photos were added to the site the week of January 28.

Former CWLUer Heather Booth heads up NAACP voter registration efforts
Heather Booth,
a founding member of the CWLU, is now executive director of the NAACP National Voter Project and played a key role organizing a higher than expected turnout of minority voters in the 2000 Presidential election.
She appeared on CSPAN in late November to explain how that was done. Heather has come full circle. In 1964 she traveled to Mississippi to work in the Freedom Summer voter registration drive. Three civil rights workers lost their lives to KKK violence in that campaign.
In the wake of the disputed Florida election results, the NAACP has launched a lawsuit charging numerous attempts to intimidate minority voters and throw out votes from minority communities.
We salute the NAACP's efforts. Every vote counts. Count every vote.
For more details about Heather's work, please click here .

CWLU Herstory Project fundraising news
Jenny Knauss, Amy Laiken and Julie Zavala worked hard to submit a funding proposal to the Girls Best Friend foundation to help develop a girls section of the website. Unfortunately, Julie's recent illness prevented her from completing the details necessary for the Foundation to consider the proposal. Girls Best Friend has invited us to resubmit at a later time. Thanks also to Sue Davenport for her sage advice on the subject of foundations and grants.
We are investigating the possibilities of a National Endowment for the Humanities grant. We have been communicating with the Birmingham Civil Rights Museum about working with them on an NEH funded web history project about the early days of the women's liberation movement in Chicago. Jo Freeman is working with the Civil Rights Museum on that project. We are also in communication with NEH directly and will keep you posted on details.

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