Thursday, June 24, 2010

Post #7b: Independence Day, Part II

Great Moments in Independence and
the Food that Goes Along
Part II

A note for this post.  There will be no mention of the tween.  This goes out to all those who have sought and found independence.  His independence will come soon enough . . .

Early 1960's - The Second-Wave of the Woman's Movement
The second wave was concerned with gender inequality in laws and culture. It built on what had been achieved in the First Wave, and began adapting the ideas to America. Works by de Beauvoir, Friedan, and Lila Karp, advanced the work of early suffragettes.  Not only were topics of the role of women in the household or at work discussed, but woman's sexuality took a center stage during this time.  Phrases like "The Personal is Political" and the rise of Feminist theory began to seep into the academic and political consciousness.

White women and women of color began to write of their experiences in relationships; in the bedroom; and in the boardroom (at times only an aspired place).  Independence from a patriarchal culture that was both predominately white and capitalist paved the way for poetic narratives by Audre Lorde, Cherie Moraga, Gloria Anzaldua, bell hooks, and others.

Second-wave feminists saw women's cultural and political inequalities as inextricably linked and encouraged women to understand aspects of their personal lives as deeply politicized and as reflecting sexist power structures.  Independence from the patriarchal structures could be defined by each woman in her own way.

Lila Karp (1933-2008) was an activist, writer, teacher and feminist.  She is known for her novel The Queen is in the Garbage, and is profiled in the book "Feminists Who Changed America, 1963-1975". In her novel, Lila Karp explored the psychological and sexual entanglements of a woman’s experience. This absorbing story uses a feminist perspective to deconstruct fundamental questions of womanhood, autonomy, and the very essence of human existence.  Karp shows her protagonist struggling to make sense of men, marriage, miscarriages, abortion, sexuality, racism, and psychological entanglements ­ all the issues the nascent women's movement was confronting.  Lila was a friend of mine who I shared many stories of how my son was developing.  She gave me insights, using Greek myths, on how to make sense of his development.

To honor the independence of the Second-Wave Feminists, I share with you a recipe on the traditional TV dinner.  What many men were left to eat when women left the home to be with other women as they discovered their self, their bodies, and their political voice.

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