Advertisement

Margaret Sanger’s Jewish Allies

Margaret Sanger (not Jewish), whose activism and sacrifice led to the legalization and normalization of birth control in American life and the establishment of Planned Parenthood, was born in Corning, New York on this date in 1879. Finding her calling while working among working-class women on New York’s Lower East Side, Sanger was active in the […]

Read More

Diary of a Mad Housewife

Sue Kaufman, author of The Diary of a Mad Housewife (1967) and six other works of fiction before committing suicide after a long depression at age 50, was born on Long Island on this date in 1926. She was a graduate of Vassar, achieved early success as a freelance writer, and published her first novel, The Happy Summer Days, in 1959. Kaufman had […]

Read More

Flora Lewis

Journalist, political essayist, and international correspondent Flora Lewis died at 79 on this date in 2002. Lewis wrote for the New York Times, Washington Post, International Herald Tribune and other newspapers, and blazed a trail for women as international reporters. Among the historical events she covered were the 1948 and 1967 Israeli-Arab wars, the 1956 Soviet crackdown […]

Read More

The Poetry of Maxine Kumin

Maxine Kumin (1925-2014) was awarded the Pulitzer Prize on this date in 1973 for Up Country: Poems of New England. Kumin, who was appointed the Library of Congress’ Poet Laureate in 1981–82, wrote eighteen books of poetry as well as novels, memoirs, essay collections, and children’s books. While studying at Radcliffe, she helped try to […]

Read More

April 28: Hertha Ayrton, Inventor

British scientist and inventor Hertha Ayrton (Phoebe Sarah Marks), the first woman to be proposed for the fellowship of the Royal Society (in 1902), was born in Portsea, Hampshire, England, on this date in 1854. Ayrton was refused admission to the Society because, as a married woman, she had no legal status under British law. Four […]

Read More

August 26: Lina Stern, Outliving Stalin

Lina Stern, an outstanding medical biochemist who emigrated to the USSR for ideological reasons in 1925, served as a director of the Institute of Physiology of the USSR Academy of Sciences for nearly twenty years, and won the Stalin Prize in 1943, was born in today’s Latvia on this date in 1878. Stern did pioneering work […]

Read More

March 31: The Queen of Hebrew Music

Husky-voiced singer Shoshana Damari, who earned a reputation as “The Queen of Hebrew Music,” was born in Dhamar, Yemen on this date in 1923. Her family brought her to Palestine (on foot) the following year, and she became a child performer there within the Yemenite Jewish community. She gave her first radio performance at age […]

Read More

December 6: Pioneering Women Rabbis

Rabbis Sally Priesand, Sandy Eisenberg Sasso, Amy Eilberg, and Sara Hurwitz — the first ordained women rabbis from the Reform, Reconstructionist, Conservative, and contemporary or “open” Orthodox movements, respectively — gathered together publicly for the first time at Temple Reyim in Boston on this date in 2010. They lit khanike candles and “also discussed what […]

Read More

November 21: A Mother of German Social Work

Jeannette Schwerin, a founder of the German Society for Ethical Culture and a pioneer of social work in Berlin, was born on this date in 1852. She was active in the Woman Welfare Club, which sought reform of the educational and prison systems, and of the German Central Institute for Social Issues, a project of […]

Read More