Schaefers join Gloria Steinem on tour

BlowingRocket.com

When we give to international aid organizations such as the Red Cross or UNICEF, we don’t generally get to see that aid in action.

A generous Blowing Rock couple got to see their donations at work in January and traveled halfway around the globe to do so.

Jamie and Bonnie Schaefer, owners of Westglow Resort and Spa, traveled with legendary women’s rights advocate Gloria Steinem and a group of five others through Calcutta, India, from Jan. 24 through Feb. 7. Continue Reading.

Debates, book releases mark second day of Patna Literature Festival

Times of India

PATNA: Frequent drizzle notwithstanding, people in large numbers enjoyed hot debates, discussions on Indian cinema and folk literature, book launches and screening of sensitive documentaries on the second day of Patna Literature Festival (PLF) on Saturday.

Opening with a session on ‘My Life: A Musical Journey’, Vikram Sampat and Kumud Diwan discussed the lives of music maestros followed by release of a book, ‘When the Saints Go Marching In: The Curious Ambivalence of Religious Sadhus in Recent Politics in India’. Written by Dr Rajesh Pradhan, it was launched by Om Thanvi. Continue Reading.

A Constant Battle Against the Sale of Bodies in Bihar

New York Times

The women’s rights activists Ruchira Gupta and Gloria Steinem are keeping a diary of their travels throughout India as they meet the country’s young feminists, writers and thought leaders (previous posts are here and here). In this installation for India Ink, Ms. Gupta and Ms. Steinem visit Patna, Bihar state’s capital, and Forbesgunge, a small town on the border of India and Nepal, in Bihar.

Jan. 22, Wednesday:  Not many tourists go to Bihar.  It’s one of the poorest states in India, with good land for agriculture but too few other jobs and too little electricity to create them. Buddha was born here, but after national boundaries were drawn, his birthplace ended up in Nepal. This was also the home ground of Jayprakash Narayan, the great Gandhian socialist leader, but a leftist tradition is held against Bihar by a central government now into big business. Life is politics. Politics is life.

This is my fourth visit to Bihar, Ruchira’s family home. They used their income from small rice, oil and biscuit factories to help socialists, reformers, poets. You might say they were the Kennedys of Bihar. Continue Reading.

In Jaipur, New Feminists Are Born

New York Times

The women’s rights activists Ruchira Gupta and Gloria Steinem are keeping a diary of their travels throughout India as they meet the country’s young feminists, writers and thought leaders. In this installation for India Ink, Ms. Gupta and Ms. Steinem take part in the Jaipur Literature Festival.

Jan. 17, Friday: Gloria and I walk under a canopy of brightly embroidered umbrellas toward Diggi Palace, a 200-year-old Persian-style estate, in whose courtyards and gardens the Jaipur Literary Festival has just started. We are officially here to hold a public conversation about our new book, “As If Women Matter,” but unofficially we want to meet student activists, new and old feminists, writers, poets, storytellers and book lovers in this five-day feast of people and ideas. Continue Reading.

Jaipur Literature Festival

Gloria Steinem on Indian Standard Time

Walk the Talk with Gloria Steinem

NDTV

Gloria Steinem is a writer and activist who has been involved in feminist and other social justice movements for over forty years. Recently she was in Delhi at Apne Aap Women Worldwide, an anti-sex trafficking NGO where she met Shekhar Gupta, Editor-in-Chief, Indian Express and told him about her journey in India 50 years ago. She describes her efforts to bring about a change in the way people look at women as an object and to make them realise the potential a woman has. Watch the Video. 

Feminism has been made fun of for 40 years, give it another 60: Gloria Steinem

Times of India

She is the woman who famously said, A woman needs a man like a fish needs a bicycle’. At 80, feminist Gloria Steinem has lost none of the spirit, sparkle or humour that marked her radical writings. In Delhi to launch her latest collection of landmark essays, As if Women Really Matter, she tells Malini Nair that she is awed by the on-the-street radicalism of young Indian women

Post the December 16 gang rape in Delhi last year, it is as though there is a sudden and dramatic realization in Indian women of their self-worth. How do you see this?

It was like lighting a match to dry tinder. If this had happened 20 years ago the energy would have been suppressed. Women are no longer saying ‘give us protection’ because protection is more imprisoning. They are saying: give us justice. It will take a long time for the rest of the society to get used to it and accept it. But I believe that men are also beginning to tire of forever playing masculine roles of being aggressors and protectors. They realize that gender stereotypes are bad for them too. Continue Reading.

Excerpt: The Essential Gloria Steinem Reader

Live Mint

Prostitution isn’t the oldest profession. It’s the oldest oppression. One barrier to fighting both prostitution and sex trafficking is the false notion that there has always been this kind of inequality. In a patriarchy, some women are sexually restricted to childbearing and keeping the ruling race or caste “pure,” while others are sexually exploited for sex only or for producing more workers. But when European colonists arrived among the five hundred or so tribes of North America, they wrote home about their shock that “these savages” didn’t rape, not even their female prisoners. Columbus himself wrote home his complaints when conquered Native women fought against becoming sexual slaves to his crew. Continue Reading.

Start Where You Are

The Telegraph

Protest need not always be about rousing moments of change, and, taking a leaf out of her early days of protesting, Gloria Steinem admitted, “When I started I was quite naive and I think burnout is a function of naivete. It took me quite a while to understand the depths of injustice.” Continue Reading.