Guest Author - Vance Rowe
To further celebrate National Women’s History Month, let’s take a look at the woman who can be called the queen of the women’s liberation movement,Gloria Steinem.
Gloria Steinem is an activist, an author, a lecturer, is very controversial, and has championed for women’s rights since the early 1960’s. One of her more famous articles she had written was when she did an expose on the Playboy Club in New York City for the magazine called Show. She went undercover in the Playboy Club as a “scantily-clad bunny” waitress. Later on in that decade, she would go on to help create New York magazine. A magazine for which she wrote a political column. Steinem then became more involved with the women’s movement after reporting on an abortion hearing involving a radical feminist group, known as the Redstockings. Another controversial essay she wrote then was called After Black Power, Women’s Liberation.
In 1971, along with other feminists such as Betty Friedan and Bella Abzug, she formed the National Women’s Political Caucus, which tackled women’s issues. Gloria Steinem also established a magazine that was strictly for women’s rights and women’s issues called Ms. and started out as an insert in New York magazine until it gained enough steam to become its own publication. Ms. Also became the first national magazine to put domestic violence on its cover, as the magazine covered this horrible subject and other women’s issues.
As Gloria Steinem began to get bigger, she began to get backlash from other feminist groups like the Redstockings for her involvement with the Independent Research Service, a CIA backed organization in which she got her first job at after graduating from Smith College. She also received backlash for her trendy lifestyle. In 1983, she wrote a collection of essays entitled, Outrageous Acts and Everyday Rebellions and covered a broad range of topics. In 1986, Gloria Steinem got breast cancer but was able to eventually beat it with treatment.
Then in 2000, the woman who once said, “A woman needs a man like a fish needs a bicycle”, got married. She married an animal rights activist and environmentalist, David Bale, the father of actor Christian Bale. Unfortunately, he died in 2003 due to brain cancer. In March of 2017, Gloria Steinem celebrated her 83rd birthday and is still involved with social justice. Steinem said, “The idea of retiring is as foreign to me as the idea of hunting.”