Month: September 2019

Virginia Woolf’s “Angel in the House” and what it takes to be a #NastyWoman

In 1931 Virginia Woolf was asked to give a speech to the London National Society for Women’s Service on the topic of the employment of women. Would she speak about her own professional experiences? In the speech and subsequent essay, “Professions for Women,” culled from it, Woolf openly admits that though she is a woman and employed, she has not had what many might consider “professional experiences” since she works at home, alone, writing in a room of her own. Virginia Woolf was an extremely successful British writer (1882-1941) of essays, book reviews, literary criticism, memoirs, feminist texts and...

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Staceyann Chin: She Stirs Me Up, Jamaican/American (1972)

I was in the second grade the first time someone called me the “n” word. As my classmates laughed with their blonde pigtails bobbing up and down, it began to stir a little rage inside of me. Today I work at a salon where silver-haired, white men would never use that word to describe me, but they ask boldly for the’ colored gal’ to cut their hair. One afternoon I was searching YouTube to find some solace for my little rage, and I stumbled upon a poet who spoke to my little brown inner child and the woman I’ve...

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“The phoenix takes its rest”: Visiting May Sarton’s Grave

I just returned from New Hampshire where my daughter was recently married. The site of the wedding was Granite Lake in Nelson, not far from where May Sarton spent a good fifteen years of her adult life and although she didn’t die there, it was her wish to be buried in this small town, in the only place she ever owned a home. One afternoon, on break from wedding preparations, my son, Keegan, and I drove around Nelson in search of the cemetery, which in such a small town could only be situated in one of a few places....

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Emergent Ambition by Theresa C. Dintino

While teaching a class on Women and Ambition, I was led to adrienne maree brown’s book, Emergent Strategy (reviewed on this site) and began to craft a theory of “emergent ambition.” adrienne’s book gave language to feelings I had been experiencing for so long with regard to my own work and ambition and the recoil I experienced at the well-meaning advice friends kept giving me about “growing my work and reputation.”  I felt instinctively that my work needed to grow organically and spread slowly from the ground up by making organic connections and slowly casting a net or weaving...

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