Feminist firebrand and longtime 9To5 director Ellen Bravo is coming to Washington, D.C. to promote her new book Taking on the Big Boys: Or Why Feminism is Good for Families, Business, and the Nation.
At the event, Ellen will tell stories from decades of frontline 9to5 campaigns for income equity, family leave, and an end to sexual harassment and insecure temp work. In debunking myths from the Big Boys, she combines outrage with humor, and facts with personal narratives. Bravo goes beyond smashing the glass ceiling to redesigning the building from the bottom up.
Tuesday April 10, 7 pm
1526 New Hampshire Ave. NW, D.C.
Free and open to the public
Co-sponsored by Politics and Prose, National Coalition of Womenâs Organizations,
The Feminist Press at CUNY, and the Institute for Womenâs Policy Research.
The original book Why It’s Great to Be a Girl: 50 Things You Can Tell Your Daughter to Increase Her Pride in Being Female which was issued in 1994 has now been updated and is being re-released with a new title called Why It’s Great to Be a Girl: 50 Awesome Reasons Why We Rule!. The author is Jacqueline Shannon. I first read this book in high school, either as a junior or senior. It had all sorts of facts in there that I never knew, or that no one had ever told me. I bought the book and thought, âWow. This will be great when I have a daughter of my own.â Plus it had the added bonus of building up my self esteem at a time when I was struggling with the woman I was becoming. I later loaned the book to my aunt for her to share with my two female cousins.
Shannon wrote the book after her pre-school daughter encountered sexism and gender bias when she was asked what she wanted to be when she grew up answered âa doctor.â The man who had asked the question replied âYou let the boys be the doctors…Girls donât have the stomach to deal with blood.â This was just one of a few examples that her daughter had experienced.
The new edition has been updated and expanded with the help of the authorâs daughter, Madeline, who is now in college. The original book was designed for mothers of young daughters, but the newer version is geared toward girls entering adolescence. Sheâs also made the book more multicultural and global to focus on achievements of women worldwide, since the first book focused on women in Western countries. Her hope is that the book will reach an international audience of girls in whose countries gender bias is even worse than in the United States.
From the publisherâs website:
After all, what girl wouldn’t feel great about herself knowing that:
â¢ girls hear better than boys
â¢ girls drive better than boys
â¢ girls’ bodies are stronger than boys’ in every way, except for muscles
â¢ girls are less susceptible to major diseases
â¢ and, according to many anthropologists and archaeologists, girls actually “civilized” humankind!
My favorite one of the above is that girls drive better than boys. My dad and uncle have made mean remarks about âwomen driversâ for years, but they were wrong!
Iâll be heading to my local bookstore next week to pick up a copy, and will hold onto it until my daughter is old enough to read it for herself. Though she is still young, I hope to instill a sense of pride in her that being female is a wonderful thing, and I hope she never feels like the âweaker sexâ or inferior to boys.
- Michelle Schafer