Category

Women’s History
With Mother's Day close at hand, I am devoting this newsletter to mothers – mine, yours, all of ours.
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Current events should lead us to a new way of thinking about women's history.
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Like quilts and blankets, the history of America is composed of many strands.
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Michelle Wu and Mary Lou Akai-Ferguson
This month, I'm sharing an article I wrote for MS Magazine. Here it is, as it appeared on November 11.
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Yesterday I voted in Boston's mayoral election where there were two candidates, both women. A little more than a century ago, this could not have happened -- neither me in the voting booth nor women on the ballot. Upstate New York had a lot to do with making it possible.
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Self-portrait with Bernardino Campi
This month, I'm talking about art again. Actually, a book about art, The Mirror and the Palette, by Jennifer Higgie, where she covers five hundred years of women's self-portraiture, a genre women have long practiced, even if mostly under the radar.
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In last month's newsletter, I ruminated on how women can move history. Now I'm back with more on the subject, specifically Phebe Lord Upham, born in Maine in 1804.
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Lemon soda buttermilk parfait
Two years ago I was invited to give a reading in New York. My husband Andrew came with me and, naturally, we added museums and restaurants to the trip. One evening we went to Prune, a wonderful place on East 1st Street (now regrettably closed) run by chef Gabrielle Hamilton and her wife.
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Vaccines are all the buzz these days. Saturated with news coverage, we’ve absorbed new terms like spike protein and messenger RNA, and learned that some vaccines, like Pfizer-BioNTech’s and Moderna’s, are really a new breed. Without recent advances in biotechnology, we wouldn’t have these vaccines at all. Did you know that the polio vaccine, which...
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Dr Susan Smith McKinney Steward
Susan Smith was born in 1847 into a farming family that raised pork in Weeksville, a section of Brooklyn, New York sandwiched between Bedford-Stuyvesant, Brownsville and Crown Heights. Her nine siblings became school teachers and principals, but she went into medicine, graduating as valedictorian from New York Medical College for Women in 1870. When she...
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