Tag: women in politics

Know Your Power: A Message to America’s Daughters, by Nancy Pelosi, Italian American (First published in 2008)

It’s a good time to talk about Nancy Pelosi as she knows her power as Madame Speaker once again. It’s a good time to remind people of this book, Know Your Power: A Message to America’s Daughters by Nancy Pelosi. Here she tells her story of ascending to that position and shares the tools she has learned to be an effective leader, the skills she has gleaned from being in a position that requires effective negotiation and thinking “outside the beltway,” and offers the catchphrases that helped her along the way: “Organize, don’t agonize,” “Be Ready,” and “Know Your...

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Marguerite de Navarre de Angoulême: A Marvelous Contempt for all the Vanities of this World, French, (1492-1549)

Marguerite de Navarre was born in Angoulême on 11 April 1492, the eldest child of  Louise of Savoy and Charles, Count of Angoulême, who was a descendent of Charles V. He was the eventual successor to the French crown, as imposed by masculine primogeniture law, in case Charles VIII and his heir, Louis, Duke of Orleans, would not produce a son. Marguerite’s father died when she was only four years old, but nevertheless, she received an excellent education. She also studied Latin. Today, she is considered one of the most important women of modern times. She was two years...

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The Feminine Mystique by Betty Friedan (first published in 1963)

A few months ago one of my male colleagues asked what feminist books I recommend he read and it occurred to me that I had missed a couple of the heavy hitters. That’s when I decided to read Betty Friedan’s The Feminine Mystique, often credited with kicking off the second wave of feminism in the early 1960s. This work of nonfiction was an incredibly well-timed antidote. An antidote to what Friedan calls the problem with no name. “The problem,” she explains, “lay buried, unspoken, for many years in the minds of American women. It was a strange stirring, a...

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In the Beginning, There Was Enheduanna, Sumerian(2285-2250 B.C.E.) by Michelle Barthel Kratts

When I write, I often think of the first women who were daring enough to write. Over the years so many things have been forbidden—most disturbingly, the freedom of expression. Yet one woman found herself crafting words into poetry and commanding the course of history. Enheduanna, whom authors and poets may call “grandmother,” lived at the beginning of recorded history in the kingdom of ancient Sumeria. She is credited as the world’s first known author. Enheduanna translates as: “En” (Chief Priestess); “hedu” (ornament); “Ana” (of heaven) or as “En-Priestess, wife of the god Nanna.”  It is possible that she...

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