fall 2004
table of contents
Letter from the Editor
Articles Online

Scandal Patrol
Daughters Helping Working Mothers
Republican Women for Choice
Pregnant Women Murdered
San Francisco Women's Building
Sisters Who Sip


Haitians Fight Despair
Matenwa's Artists
Women with AIDS
Spanish Women in Charge
Gandhi Power
Afghan Women's Vote
Networking Corner

Cover Story
It's the Women, Stupid | Ellen Hawkes
Why the Gender Gap Matters | Eleanor Smeal
Fighting Words for a Secular America | Robin Morgan

More Features

The Unreal World | Jennifer Pozner
Virgin Territory | Camille Hahn
A Family Affair | Gillian Kane
Liv Ullmann: A Ms. Conversation | Robert Emmet Long
Liberating Mary | Bob Lamm


Where's That Smoking Gun? Sex discrimination is getting harder to prove | Pamela Haag

The Breast Cancer Divide: Why the disease kills so many African Americans | Michelle L. Smith, M.D.

A Feast of Feminist Art
"The Dinner Party" finds a home in Brooklyn | Carey Lovelace

Jamesey, Jamesey | Ursula Hegi
Intersection | Roxana Robinson

God Says Yes To Me | Kaylin Haught
| Donna Masini

Touching History
Encounters with women of renown: Marjory Stoneman Douglas, Hillary Clinton and Mamie "Peanut" Johnson

Book Reviews
Bob Bledsoe on The Finishing School by Murial Sparks; Valerie Miner on The Falls by Joyce Carol Oates; Samantha Dunn on The Doctor's Wife by Elizabeth Brundage; Carey Lovelace on Full Bloom: The
Art and Life of Georgia O'Keefe
by Hunter Drohojowska-Philp
; Patricia Cohen on Nightingales: The Extraordinary Upbringing and Curious Life of Miss Florence Nightingale by Gillian Gill

Plus: Fall Must-Read List

Save the Courts | Donna Brazile

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Send a Letter to the Editor >>

The Election Issue

Letter from the Editor

At the March for Women’s Lives in Washington, D.C., last April, I met and talked with Sandra Bernhard oh so briefly. She was friendly. We talked enthusiastically about the mission of the new Ms., our strong ties to our past and our plans for the future.

“So. What you’re saying … Ms. magazine is not going to be namby-pamby?” Bernhard said in that way of hers.

Read Letter >>

Online Now
The Unreal World
by Jennifer L. Pozner

Viewers continue to tune in because these shows frame their narratives in ways that both reflect and reinforce deeply ingrained societal biases about women, men, love, beauty, class and race. Discuss >>

A Conversation With Liv Ullmann
by Robert Emmet Long

In the late 1960s and early 1970s, Liv Ullmann was called the emblem of art-house cinema. Ultimately, the actor owned up to the fact that she was also an auteur. Long talks with Ullmann about her career and the next film she will direct, A Doll's House, starring Kate Winslet. Discuss >>

Like Daughter, Like Mother
by Sarah Gonzales

Lin Lac watched her mother develop chronic back and wrist pain during 16 years as a garment worker. That’s why she eagerly agreed to help carry out a study of work-related injuries in the garment industry, launched four years ago by Asian Immigrant Women Advocates. Discuss >>

A Feast of Feminist Art
by Carey Lovelace

Elizabeth Sackler offered to donate more than “The Dinner Party” — she’s funded a whole new wing of the museum, which will open in 2006 as the Elizabeth A. Sackler Center for Feminist Art. Discuss >>

Where's That Smoking Gun?
by Pamela Haag

Title VII of the Civil Rights Act turns 40 this year, and it’s a bittersweet birthday. It’s getting harder to actually enforce the law, because the standards for what constitutes sufficient evidence are becoming increasingly stringent. Discuss >>

AIDS Has a Woman's Face

by Stephen Lewis

If there’s one constant throughout the years I’ve been U.N. Special Envoy — years spent traversing the African continent — it’s the thus-far irreversible vulnerability of women. It goes without saying that the virus has targeted women with a raging, Darwinian ferocity. It goes equally without saying that gender inequality is what sustains and nurtures the virus, causing women to be infected in ever greater, disproportionate numbers. Discuss >>

Fighting Words For A Secular America
by Robin Morgan

When John Ashcroft repeatedly invokes religion, the Founders must be picketing in their graves. Next time someone insists that U.S. law has religious roots, here's evidence to the contrary, courtesy of John Adams, Thomas Jefferson ...
Disscuss >>

A Family Affair

by Gillian Kane

The Illinois-based World Congress of Families is taking its right-wing agenda to a global stage with the hope of reversing social initiatives on reproductive rights, gay rights and population issues, particularly those negotiated at the United Nations. Discuss >>

Liberating Mary
by Bob Lamm

London's National Portrait Gallery kept its Mary Wollstonecraft portrait in storage -- until an intrepid male feminist got on the case.
Disscuss >>

Save the Courts
by Donna Brazile

If you ask any Democratic senator, perhaps even Republican senators too, what is at stake in the 2004 election, they would respond with two words: Supreme Court. Discuss >>

Scandal Patrol

by Lara Friedrich and Anne Decleene

Forced by public outcry to take action on sexual assault, the military has regularly done studies, held hearings and released reports — 18 reports in 15 years. But the question lingers: When will the military stop talking and start taking the steps necessary to reduce this epidemic of violence? Discuss >>

The Breast Cancer Divide

by Michelle L. Smith, M.D.

Since the early 1980s, increased mammography screening has led to earlier breast-cancer detection, and mortality rates for American women have declined. Yet African American women have benefited far less from these advances than have white women. Why are so many African American women dying? Discuss >>

The Afghan Women's Vote

by Sima Wali

Afghanistan is far from normal, and very far from functioning as a democracy that represents all its citizens, female and male. Most U.S. media coverage barely notices this, offering upbeat reports on a few areas of progress, neglecting the reality endured by the majority of Afghans: women. What will happen during the first presidential election October 9? Discuss >>

The Artists of Matènwa
by Edwidge Danticat

In a tiny rural community buried in Haiti's mountains, the women of Matènwa have started an artistic project designed to bring women money, pride and hope. Plus: Jacqueline Charles reports on the status of women in Haiti.
Discuss >>

Why the Gender Gap Matters

by Eleanor Smeal

In U.S. elections, women count — or, to be more precise, women count more. On November 2, 2004, some 8 million more women than men will vote. Magnifying women’s voting clout is the gender gap — the measurable difference in the way women and men vote for candidates and in the way they view political issues.
Discuss >>

Daughterhood is Powerful
An Interview with Vanessa Kerry

Vanessa Kerry and her sister, Alexandra, hit the stump to tell the public why they are supporting their father’s candidacy. Ms. magazine caught up with Vanessa by telephone in Las Vegas, Nev., during the campaign’s transcontinental bus/train tour. Discuss >>

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