Category Archives: Feminism

Beyond Abortion: Reproductive Justice Envisions More

The human right to choose to have children or not to have children is a foundational principle in the vision of Reproductive Justice (RJ). Thus the increase in legal attacks on abortion rights and trans rights is understandably central to … Continue reading

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Healing Culture in Wartime

Forty-one years ago when we organized the Common Differences conference on the UI campus, I was a young professor, already quite engaged in women’s issues, which had led to my research, writing, travels, and overall commitment. When I retired from the University of … Continue reading

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Coalition of Labor Union Women for Champaign County

On the evening of March 27 more than 30 people representing about a dozen labor unions and community groups gathered at the Plumbers Local 149 Union Hall in Savoy to launch a chapter of the Coalition of Labor Union Women … Continue reading

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Who is Un-American?

This article, commissioned for the Public i, appeared first in a longer version in Monthly Review on November 29, 2023, under the title “Gender, Labor, Democracy, and Americanism: U.S. History in the (Un)Making”; reprinted with permission. In the early hours of Monday, May 15, … Continue reading

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She’s Everything and Everywhere: Riffs on Barbie and the Barbie Movie

Barbie deserved her own biopic. More than one billion Barbie dolls have been shipped and sold around the world since her premier in 1959, and factories in Asia are still spewing her out. From her hair down to the pink … Continue reading

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Pre-Roe Reproductive Rights Underground: The Story of the Janes

We are back in pre-Roe Chicago. A doctor speaks about sepsis, the emergency rooms overflowing daily with feverish women dying from botched efforts to rid themselves of unwanted pregnancies. Another woman recalls her phone interactions with a mob operative. Yes, … Continue reading

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Anti-Abortion Centers Mislead People at Their Most Vulnerable

Reproductive justice: the human right to maintain personal bodily autonomy, have children, not have children, and parent the children we have in safe and sustainable communities. This past January, on the 50th anniversary of the Roe v. Wade decision, SisterSong … Continue reading

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The Lavenders: Past and Present Queer Journalism in Champaign-Urbana

On February 23, UCIMC Executive Director Miriam Larson hosted a virtual conversation with representatives of two generations of activists in Champaign-Urbana. Mary Lee Sargent, former director of Parkland College’s Women’s Studies Program (now residing in New Hampshire), was one of … Continue reading

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Woman – Life – Freedom: Interview on Resistance in Iran, Part 2

Part 1 of this interview was published in the December 2022 issue. The text has been substantially shortened and edited. Public i: I want to shift the discussion to the US now, and ask what can or should the US … Continue reading

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Women – Life – Freedom: Interview on Resistance in Iran, Part 1

Public i: Just start with a basic overview of what’s happening now and what sparked it, an update on the latest, and also what do you think people should know that isn’t being covered in the mainstream US media. Faranak … Continue reading

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Abortion Rights: A Manifesto

Women, girls, and all people who can become pregnant need abortions. Before abortion was legalized in the US, almost a million women a year sought illegal abortions. According to the Centers for Disease Control tens of millions of women, girls, … Continue reading

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Thank the Suffragists: Celebrating the Women’s Rights History of Champaign County

Ever wondered why March is Women’s History Month? We at the Museum of the Grand Prairie invite you to answer that question with a visit to our latest exhibit celebrating the centennial of women’s voting rights, “How Long Must Women … Continue reading

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Polish Women Take to the Streets

Following an October 22 Polish Supreme Court decision cutting off the main route to legal abortion in the country, Polish women, and many supportive men and children, took to the streets in the biggest mass mobilization in Poland in 40 … Continue reading

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Goodbye, Ms. Franklin

Aretha Franklin’s musical talents were legion. Incomparable singer that she was, it is hardly surprising that multiple critics have identified her as the greatest voice in popular music of the 20th century. Labeled the “Queen of Soul,” she was in … Continue reading

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Fight for the ERA in Champaign-Urbana

Sometimes we are lucky enough to be part of history, to fight for a cause that we believe in strongly. I was among many other local women who had that privilege some forty years ago, when Illinois was at the … Continue reading

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History Matters: Remembering Two “Dangerous” Labor Union Women

By Stephanie Fortado Dr. Stephanie Seawell Fortado is a Lecturer at the University of Illinois Labor Education Program, providing workshops and extension programming for unions and the general public on the Champaign-Urbana campus and throughout Illinois. Before joining the University, … Continue reading

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Remembering Ursula K. Le Guin

By Jane Valentine Jane E. Valentine, Ph.D., is an engineer and applied mathematician who is interested in the intersection of science, literature, and social issues. A native of Pittsburgh, she now resides in Champaign. Ursula K. Le Guin, one of … Continue reading

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Equal Pay Now, We Cannot Afford to Wait

By Julie Laut On Tuesday, April 4, 2017, I will observe Equal Pay Day, a day that symbolizes how far into the new year women must work to earn as much as men did in 2016. According to the latest … Continue reading

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Daughters of the Dust and the Place of the Gullah/Geechee

I was first introduced to Julie Dash’s exquisite film in 2000, about nine years after its release. One of my dear friends at the time, underground hip hop legend Percee P, was an avid collector of black cinema and was … Continue reading

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Manifesto: In Review

By Rachel Lauren Storm Nestled in the Armory Free Theater on campus, captive audiences witnessed a theatrical performance this March that urged an examination of feminist histories and futures. “How do you talk about 300 years in four minutes? [sighs, … Continue reading

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