Dec 182013
 

WELCOME AUTHORS


Linda Joy Myers, Kate Farrell and Amber Lea Starfire

Connect with Linda Joy Myers, Kate Farrell and Amber Lea Starfire at these sites:

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GUEST POST

“Legacy of the ‘60s and ‘70s and What It Means for Women Today”
by Elise Frances Miller, Winner Second Place, Prose

In the early ‘70s, I was doing just what I wanted to do: teaching three art history and humanities classes and conducting research as a college instructor. I was not happy being “part-time,” underpaid, and with no benefits. I did not consider myself an artist, though I still tried my hand at a variety of media in those days. I admired artists, especially women, who put their work out there in public, sometimes defying a parent or spouse, usually for very little remuneration.

Then I joined an organization called “Women Artists It’s Time” (W.A.I.T). The mission was clear: find ways for female artists’ work to be appreciated and understood on a level commensurate with that of male artists. We had role models from Berthe Morisot to Georgia O’Keefe, Louise Nevelson to Joan Brown, but these pioneers did not have many peers. In the realm of art history, Women Artists: 1550-1950 published in 1976 by Linda Nochlin and Anne Sutherland Harris took academic art history departments and the stuffy College Art Association by storm.

At universities in the late ‘60s and early ‘70s, almost no female artists made it into the curriculum. Nochlin and Harris broke the Western, white, male version of art history, and encouraged others, both men and women, to broaden their research for international, ethnic and gender equity in publications.

Our small efforts in W.A.I.T. soon blossomed, not because more women chose to go into art, but because more of them became known. We also celebrated the recognition of women’s “crafts” by art museums. Quilting, weaving, needlework and other handicrafts were accepted as subjects for both historical and current exhibitions.

By the 1970s and ‘80s, I was writing art reviews for major newspapers and magazines. Judy Chicago, Betye Saar, Eleanor Antin and Jennifer Bartlett were just a few of my favorite artists to review. As galleries began to exhibit women’s artwork, I encountered no resistance to featuring them in my articles.

Today there is no lack of women artists. Some of these have made a splash, but as in other fields, the struggle is not behind us. Women still lag behind men both in exposure and remuneration.

As a member of W.A.I.T., I learned that when we band together, boosting our sense of purpose, we push forward, and best of all, we create in diverse fields, guilt-free, with families and all. This personal growth was important to the expansion of social, political and professional roles for women in the 1970s, and in turn, women’s movement activity also enhanced the individual’s journey.

The Times They Were A-Changing: Women Remember the ‘60s and ‘70s preserves the record of that two-way nourishment in varied circumstances. As this anthology shows so well, in tandem with the political struggles, social experiments, and hard-fought gains that are the legacy for today’s women, there was always the girl becoming a woman, unsure, seeking strength through collaboration, building the story one scene at a time. Since our era, as never before, that has been the way it is done.

Elise Frances Miller’s novel, A Time to Cast Away Stones (Sand Hill Review Press, June, 2012), is set in 1968 Berkeley and Paris. With degrees from UC Berkeley and UCLA, Elise began writing about arts for the Los Angeles Times, Art News and San Diego Magazine. She taught high school and college humanities, and served as communications director at San Diego State University and Stanford. Her short stories have appeared in The Sand Hill Review (fiction editor, 2008), Fault Zone: Stepping Up to the Edge, and online. Her novel and its historical background are described at http://www.elisefmiller.com.

 

ABOUT THE BOOK

Just in time for the holidays, Linda Joy Myers, Kate Farrell and Amber Lea Starfire launch their anthology Times They Were A-Changing: Women Remember the ’60s and ’70s. The book is the perfect gift for opening discussions with friends and family members and illustrating what a powerful time the ’60s and ’70s truly were.

Forty-eight powerful stories and poems etch in vivid detail breakthrough moments experienced by women during the life-changing era that was the ’60s and ’70s. These women rode the sexual revolution with newfound freedom, struggled for identity in divorce courts and boardrooms, and took political action in street marches. They pushed through the boundaries, trampled the taboos, and felt the pain and joy of new experiences. And finally, here, they tell it like it was.

Through this collection of women’s stories, we celebrate the women of the ’60s and ’70s and the importance of their legacy.

BOOK DETAILS:

Paperback: 354 pages
Publisher: She Writes Press
Publication Date: Sept. 8, 2013
ISBN-10: 1938314042
ISBN-13: 978-1938314049

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DISCLAIMER
I received a copy of this book, at no charge to me, in exchange for my honest review. No items that I receive are ever sold…they are kept by me, or given to family and/or friends.
ADDENDUM
I do not have any affiliation with Amazon.com or Barnes & Noble. I am an IndieBound affiliate. I am providing link(s) solely for visitors that may be interested in purchasing this Book/EBook.

 

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  7 Responses to “WOW! Presents: THE TIMES THEY WERE A’CHANGING ENDED

  1. Dear Cheryl,

    Thank you so much for hosting Times They Were A-Changing on the WOW! Blog Tour. It is especially important for women today to look back and acknowledge what a breakthrough era it was for women in all fields.

    Elise Frances Miller, one of our prize winning authors, points out in this guest post the struggle of women artists of that era from her first hand experience. It’s hard to believe that women artists were not even mentioned in college art history courses back then!

    We hope our anthology is a work of art in its own medium of personal stories. The book presents a mosaic of stories and poems that creates a vibrant image of the times, how everyday women experienced it, moment by moment. As I reread it during this blog tour, I find each author’s voice engaging and stimulating. A great gift to share across generations for the holidays, a compelling look back and ahead!

    Thanks again to you, to Elise, and Renee!
    Best wishes,
    Kate

  2. Elise, thank you for writing such a thoughtful article.

    And Cheryl, thank you for hosting us! I agree with Kate that this anthology is important for women of future generations as well as those who experienced the era of the ’60s & ’70s. I’ve also been pleasantly surprised by how men of all ages are fascinated by and enjoying the stories and poems in the anthology. Though the stories and poems are unique in their settings, they are also universal.

    • Amber,

      Thanks for your comment! I recall an enthusiastic conversation with Jay Miller, Elise’s husband, at our Berkeley book launch. He was fascinated with the stories, wanted to share the book with his university colleagues.

      It’s so refreshing to hear women’s voices loud and clear, in unison, telling about their life changing moments. I am grateful that we could be part of this process in editing Times They Were A-Changing!

      Kate

  3. Great to read another blog post on the tour. Thank you all!

    And thanks, Elise for this bit of art history! In college and after (late ’60s, early ’70s) I pretty much assumed women could do anything they wanted with their art. I didn’t look to history or the media so much as to the women around me. They had passion and vision and it seemed there was no stopping their expression. Regardless of personal insecurities, we pushed against boundaries and forged forward. The collaboration you mention was critical — it happened then and it’s happening now more than ever. Women supporting women, women seeking and building support through collaboration. It’s the only way.

    I so appreciate the anthology as one example of the fruits of that collaboration, and how the book honors the vision and experience of women in that life-changing era.

    To the art of the book (this book!)~~

    Darlene

  4. I am grateful that the anthology is being well received. The anthology brings a pivotal time into perspective. The anthology also adds credibility to memoir as a literary form.

  5. I have really enjoyed reading all the slices of history from the contributors and editors of this anthology. Elise,thank you for writing about your experience with W.A.I.T and the ground you broke for others as part of it. And thank you, Cheryl, for such a great showcase for the book on this tour!

  6. I’ve enjoyed reading all of these comments. Darlene’s is most revealing: even when we were in the thick of it, with change swirling all around us, it was difficult to realize how different women’s options and prospects were just a few years before! Writing this blog has helped me to remember one more aspect of my own development in those years. I am grateful for the opportunity to be a part of this entire project!

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