Sloppy Women’s History at History News Network

Could someone please explain to me why History News Network selected someone whose specialty is NOT women’s history to write this article about First Wave/Second Wave feminism? Let me point out some of the most glaring problems:

1. Not all women voted with the Republican party, nor did they join the KKK.  Jane Addams, for example, continued to support Progressive social causes.  Not all women who received the vote were bourgeois nor were they white.  Women were also central to the election of Franklin Delano Roosevelt in 1932.  Could we get some nuance and diversity here?

2. The article fast-forwards from 1920 to Phyllis Schafly and Stop-ERA.  What happened to the “Second Wave” the author refers to in the title?

3.  Okay, he includes a long, undigested quote from Susan Brownmiller, but it’s not clear what this is meant to convey — analysis, please?

What happened?  Was Tenured Radical busy or something?

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4 Comments

  1. OMG — that article was awful! I am not even formally schooled in Women’s History and I could have written a better article! Maybe I need to go back to school!

  2. Heather–you might contact Rick Shenkman at HNN and offer to write something. He contacted me a few months ago and invited me to write anything I wanted about the election this year. (I haven’t taken him up on this, because of course I’m not a modern U.S. historian!) If he contacted lowly little me, that suggests that he’s interested in widening the circle of HNN contributors, who tend to be overwhelmingly male political historians, IMHO.

    That said, your critique of this article is spot-on. (And, the commenters at HNN are another reason why I’m not super-excited about writing there!) I can send you Shenkman’s e-mail address, if you’re interested. (E-mail me if you are.)

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