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Multiracial Feminism: Recasting the Chronology of Second Wave Feminism Author(s): Becky Thompson Source: Feminist Studies, Vol.

28, No. 2, Second Wave Feminism in the United States (Summer, 2002), pp. 336-360 Published by: Feminist Studies, Inc. Stable URL: . Accessed: 13/10/2011 05:08
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Multiracial Feminism: Recasting the Chronology of Second Wave Feminism Becky Thompson

In the last severalyears, a numberof histories have been publishedthat chroniclethe emergenceand contributionsof Second Wave feminism.' Althoughinitially eager to read and teach from these histories, I have found myself increasingly concerned about the extent to which they providea version of Second Wave historythat ChelaSandovalrefersto as "hegemonic the feminism."'This feminism is white led, marginalizes activism and world views of women of color, focuses mainly on the United States, and treats sexism as the ultimateoppression.Hegemonic feminism deemphasizesor ignores a class and race analysis, generally sees equalitywith men as the goal of feminism, and has an individual rights-based,ratherthanjustice-basedvision for social change. Althoughrarelynamed as hegemonicfeminism,this historytypically resortsto an old litany of the women'smovementthat includesthree or fourbranchesof feminism:liberal,socialist,radical,and sometimescultural feminism.3The most significantproblemwith this litany is that it does not recognizethe centralityof the feminism of women of color in SecondWavehistory.Missingtoo, from normativeaccountsis the story of white antiracistfeminism which, from its emergence,has been intertwined with, and fueled by the developmentof, feminism among women of color.' Tellingthe history of Second Wave feminism from the point of view of women of color and white antiracistwomen illuminates the rise of multiracialfeminism-the liberationmovementspearheadedby women of color in the United States in the 1970s that was characterized its by internationalperspective,its attentionto interlockingoppressions,and its support of coalition politics.' Bernice Johnson Reagon'snaming of "coalitionpolitics";Patricia Hill Collins'sunderstandingof women of color as "outsiders within";BarbaraSmith'sconcept of "thesimultaneof oppressions";CherrieMoragaand GloriaAnzaldi'a's"theoryin ity
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@ 2002 by Feminist Studies, Inc.


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JEB (Joan E. Biren). Courtesy of JEB Productions.


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the flesh"; ChandraTalpade Mohanty'scritique of "imperialistfeminism"; Paula Gunn Allen's "red roots of white feminism"; Adrienne Rich's "politicsof location";and PatriciaWilliams'sanalysis of "spirit murder" all theoreticalguidepostsfor multiracial are feminism.6 Tracing the rise of multiracialfeminism raises many questions about common assumptionsmade in normativeversions of SecondWavehistory.Constructinga multiracialfeminist movementtime line and juxtaposingit with the normativetime line reveals competingvisions of what constitutes liberationand illuminatesschisms in feminist consciousnessthat are still with us today. The Rise of Multiracial Feminism Normativeaccountsof the SecondWavefeministmovementoften reach back to the publication of Betty Friedan's The Feminine Mystique in for 1963,the foundingof the NationalOrganization Womenin 1966, and the emergenceof women'sconsciousness-raising (CR)groupsin the late All signaled a rising number of white, middle-classwomen un1960s. willingto be treatedlike second-classcitizensin the boardroom,in education, or in bed. Manyof the earlyprotestswaged by this sector of the feminist movement picked up on the courage and forthrightness of 196os' struggles-a willingnessto stop traffic,breakexistinglaws to provide safe and accessibleabortions,and contradictthe older generation. Foryoungerwomen, the leadershipwomen had demonstratedin 196os' activism belied the sex roles that had traditionallydefined domestic, economic,and politicalrelationsand openednew possibilitiesfor action. This version of the originsof SecondWavehistoryis not sufficientin telling the story of multiracial feminism. Although there were Black women involvedwith NOWfrom the outset and Blackand Latinawomin en who participated CRgroups,the feminist work of women of color also extended beyond women-only spaces. In fact, during the 1970s, women of color were involved on three fronts-working with whitedominated feminist groups; forming women's caucuses in existing and mixed-genderorganizations; developingautonomousBlack,Latina, NativeAmerican,and Asianfeministorganizations.7 This three-pronged approachcontrastssharplywith the common notion that women of colorfeministsemergedin reactionto (and therefore in later than) white feminism.In her critiqueof "modelmaking" Second Wavehistoriography, whichhas "allbut ignoredthe feminist activismof women of color,"Benita Roth "challengesthe idea that Blackfeminist was a latervariantof so-calledmainstreamwhite feminism."8 organizing Roth'sassertion-thatthe timing of Blackfeminist organizingis roughly
equivalent to the timing of white feminist activism-is true about feminist activism by Latinas, Native Americans, and Asian Americans as well. One of the earliest feminist organizations of the Second Wave was a Chicana group-Hijas de Cuauhtemoc (1971)-named after a Mexican

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women's undergroundnewspaperthat was published during the 191o Mexican Revolution. Chicanaswho formed this femenista group and Mexican publisheda newspapernamed afterthe early-twentieth-century women'srevolutionary group,were initiallyinvolvedin the UnitedMexiwhichwas partof the Chicano/astucan AmericanStudentOrganization dent movement.9Many of the founders of Hijas de Cuauhtemocwere later involved in launching the first national Chicanastudies journal, EncuentroFeminil. An early Asian Americanwomen's group, Asian Sisters, focused on drug abuse interventionfor young women in LosAngeles.It emergedin 1971out of the Asian AmericanPoliticalAlliance,a broad-based,grassroots organizationlargely fueled by the consciousness of first-generabetweenAsianAmertion AsianAmericancollege students.Networking ican and other women duringthis period also includedparticipation by a contingentof 150 ThirdWorldand white women from NorthAmerica at the historic VancouverIndochinese Women's Conference(1971) to AsianAmeriworkwith Indochinesewomen against U.S. imperialism.'0 can women providedservicesfor batteredwomen, workedas advocates for refugeesand recent immigrants,producedevents spotlightingAsian women'sculturaland politicaldiversity,and organizedwith otherwomen of color." The best-knownNativeAmericanwomen's organizationof the 1970s was Women of All Red Nations (WARN).WARNwas initiated in 1974 by women, many of whom were also members of the AmericanIndian Movementwhich was founded in 1968 by Dennis Banks, GeorgeMitWARN'sactivism chell, and MaryJane Wilson, an Anishinabeactivist."' in public health service hospitals, suing included fighting sterilization the U.S. government for attempts to sell Pine Ridge water in South Dakota to corporations, and networking with indigenous people in Guatemala and Nicaragua.'3WARN reflected a whole generation of Native Americanwomen activistswho had been leaders in the takeover of Wounded Knee in South Dakotain 1973, on the Pine Ridge reservation (1973-76), and elsewhere. WARN,like Asian Sisters and Hijas de Cuauhtemoc,grew out of-and often worked with-mixed-gender nationalistorganizations. The autonomous feminist organizations that Black, Latina,Asian, and NativeAmericanwomen were formingduringthe early 1970s drew on nationalisttraditionsthroughtheir recognitionof the need for peoAt ple of color-led, independent organizations.'4 the same time, unlike earlier nationalist organizationsthat included women and men, these were organizations specificallyfor women. Among Blackwomen, one early Blackfeminist organizationwas the ThirdWorldWomen'sAlliance which emerged in 1968 out of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee(SNCC)chapterson the East Coast and focused on racism, sexism, and imperialism.'" foremost The



autonomousfeminist organizationof the early 1970s was the National Black Feminist Organization(NBFO). Founded in 1973 by Florynce Kennedy, MargaretSloan, and Doris Wright, it included many other well-known Blackwomen including Faith Ringgold,MichelleWallace, Alice Walker,and BarbaraSmith. Accordingto Deborah GrayWhite, NBFO, "more than any organization in the century ... launched a frontalassaulton sexism and racism."'6 first conferencein New York Its was attendedby 400 women from a rangeof class backgrounds. Althoughthe NFBOwas a short-livedorganizationnationally(197375), chaptersin majorcities remainedtogetherfor years, includingone in Chicagothat survived until 1981. The contents of the CR sessions were decidelyBlackwomen'sissues-stereotypes of Blackwomen in the media, discriminationin the workplace,myths about Blackwomen as matriarchs,Black women's beauty, and self-esteem." The NBFO also helped to inspire the founding of the Combahee River Collective in named aftera riverin SouthCarolina 1974,a Boston-basedorganization where HarrietTubman led an insurgent action that freed 750 slaves. The CombaheeRiver Collectivenot only led the way for crucial antiracist activism in Boston through the decade, but it also provided a blueprint for Black feminism that still stands a quarter of a century later.'"From Combaheemember BarbaraSmith came a definition of feminism so expansivethat it remainsa model today. Smithwrites that "feminism the politicaltheoryand practiceto free all women:women is of color, working-class women, poor women, physically challenged women, lesbians, old women, as well as white economicallyprivileged heterosexualwomen. Anythingless than this is not feminism,but merely female self-aggrandizement."''9 These and other groups in the early and mid-1970os provided the for the most far-reaching expansiveorganizing womand foundation by en of color in U.S. history. These organizationsalso fueled a veritable explosion of writingby women of color, includingToni Cade'spioneering, TheBlack Woman:An Anthologyin 1970, MaxineHong Kingston's
The Woman Warrior in 1977, and in 1981 and 1983, respectively, the

foundationalThisBridge CalledMy Back: Writingsby Radical Women of Colorand Home Girls:A Black FeministAnthology.2oWhile chronicling the dynamism and complexity of a multidimensionalvision for women of color, these books also traced for white women what is requiredto be allies to women of color. By the late 1970s, the progress made possible by autonomous and independentAsian, Latina,and Blackfeminist organizationsopened a with space for women of color to workin coalitionacross organizations
each other. During this period, two cohorts of white women became involved in multiracial feminism. One group had, in the late 196os and early 1970s, chosen to work in anti-imperialist, antiracist militant organizations in connection with Black Power groups-the Black Panther



Party,the Black LiberationArmy-and other solidarityand nationalist organizations associated with the American Indian, Puerto Rican Independence,and ChicanoMovementsof the late 196os and early 1970s. These women chose to work with these solidarityorganizationsrather white feminist contexts.None of the white than workin overwhelmingly antiracistfeminists I interviewed(for a social history of antiracismin the United States) who were politicallyactive duringthe civil rights and that had a sinBlackPowermovementshad an interestin organizations gle focus on genderor that did not have antiracismat the center of their agendas. Militantwomen of color and white women took stands againstwhite supremacy and imperialism (both internal and external colonialism); envisioned revolutionas a necessaryoutcome of political struggle;and saw armed propaganda(armed attacks against corporateand military targets along with public educationabout state crime) as a possible tactic in revolutionary struggle.Althoughsome of these women avoidedor the term "feminist" because of its associationwith hegemonic rejected these women still confronted sexism both within solidarity feminism, and nationalistorganizationsand within their own communities.In her autobiographicalaccount of her late-196os' politics, Black liberation movement leader Assata Shakur writes: "To me, the revolutionary struggleof Blackpeople had to be againstracism,classism, imperialism and sexism for realfreedomundera socialistgovernment."" Duringthis Davis was also linking anti-capitaliststruggle with the period, Angela fight against race and gender oppression." Similarly, white militant activist Marilyn Buck, who was among the first women to confront Students for a DemocraticSociety (SDS) aroundissues of sexism, also Army. spoke up for women'srightsas an ally of the BlackLiberation Rarely,however,have their stories-and those of other militant antiracist women-been consideredpart of SecondWavehistory. In her critique of this dominantnarrative,historianNancy MacLeanwrites:"Recent accountsof the rise of modernfeminism departlittle from the story line first advancedtwo decades ago and since enshrined as orthodoxy. That story stars white middle-class women triangulatedbetween the pulls of liberal, radical/cultural,and socialist feminism. Working-class women and women of color assume walk-onparts late in the plot, after tendencies and allegiancesare alreadyin place. The problemwith this script is not simply that it has grown stale from repeatedretelling.It is
not accurate...."23

The omission of militant white women and women of color from Second Wavehistorypartlyreflectsa common notion that the women's
movement followed and drew upon the early civil rights movement and the New Left, a trajectory that skips entirely the profound impact that the Black Power movement had on many women's activism. Omitting militant women activists from historical reference also reflects a num-



ber of ideological assumptions made during the late 1960s and early feministswere those who workedprimarilyor exclu1970s-that "real" with other women; that "women'sways of knowing"were more sively less collaborative, hierarchical,and more peace loving than men's; and that women's liberationwould come from women's deepening underis standingthat "sisterhood powerful." These politics were upheld both by liberal and radicalwhite feminists. These politics did not, however,sit well with many militantwomen of color and white women who refusedto considersexism the primary, or most destructive,oppressionand recognizedthe limits of gaining equalityin a system that, as MalcolmX had explained,was alreadyon fire. The women of color and white militant women who supported a race, class, and gender analysisin the late 196os and 1970s often found themselves trying to explain their politics in mixed-gendersettings (at home, at work, and in their activism), sometimes alienated from the men (and some women) who did not get it, while simultaneouslyalienated fromwhite feministswhose politicsthey considerednarrowat best and frivolousat worst. By the late 1970s, the militant women who wanted little to do with white feminism of the late 196os and 1970s became deeply involvedin multiracialfeminism. By that point, the decade of organizing among women of colorin autonomousBlack,Latina,and Asianfeministorganizations led militant antiracistwhite women to immerse themselves in multiracialfeminism. Meanwhile, a younger cohort of white women, who were first politicizedin the late 1970s, saw feminismfrom a whole differentvantagepoint than did the older,white, antiracistwomen. For the younger group, exposureto multiracialfeminism led by women of colormeant an earlylesson that race,class, and genderwere inextricably linked. They also gainedvital experiencein multipleorganizations-battered women's shelters, conferences, and health organizations-where to womenwere,with much struggle,attempting upholdthis politic." From this organizingcame the emergenceof a small but important group of white women determinedto understandhow white privilege had historicallyblocked cross-racealliances among women, and what they, as white women, neededto do to workcloselywith women of color. Not surprisingly, Jewish women and lesbians often led the way among a white women in articulating politic that accountedfor white women's position as both oppressedand oppressor-as both women and white." Both groups knew what it meant to be marginalizedfrom a women's movement that was, nevertheless, still homophobic and Christian biased. Both groups knew that "thereis no place like home"-among other Jews and/or lesbians-and the limits of that home if for Jews it
was male dominated or if for lesbians it was exclusively white. The paradoxes of "home"for these groups paralleled many of the situations experienced by women of color who, over and over again, found themselves

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to be the bridgesthat everyoneassumedwouldbe on theirbacks. As the straight Blackwomen interactedwith the Blacklesbians, the first-generation Chinese women talked with the Native American activists, and the Latinawomen talked with the Blackand white women about the walls that go up when people cannot speak Spanish, white women attemptingto understandrace knew they had a lot of listening to do. They also had a lot of truth telling to reckon with, and a lot of networkingto do, among other white women and with women of color as well. Radicals, Heydays, and Hot Spots The story of Second Wave feminism, if told from the vantage point of multiracial feminism, also encourages us to rethink key assumptions about periodization.Among these assumptions is the notion that the 1960s and early 1970s were the height of the radical feminist movement. For example,in her forewordto Alice Echols'sDaring to Be Bad: Radical Feminism in America, 1967-1975,Ellen Willis asserts that by In the mid-197os,the best of feminism had alreadyoccurred.26 her hisof the women'sliberationmovement,BarbaraRyanwrites that the tory unity amongwomen evident in the early 1970s declineddramatically by the late 1970s as a consequenceof divisionswithinthe movement.27 Lookingat the historyof feminismfromthe point of view of women of color and antiracistwhite women suggestsquite a differentpicture.The fact that white women connectedwith the BlackPowermovementcould for rarelyfind workablespace in the earlyfeministmovementcrystalized of them with the 1971rebellionat AtticaPrisonin New YorkState many in responseto human rightsabuses."8 antiracistactivistNaomi Jaffe, For a member of SDS, the Weather Underground, and WITCH who was from Hell), attemptsto be TerroristConspiracy (Women'sInternational part of both earlySecondWavefeminismand an antiraciststrugglewere untenable.The Atticarebellion,which resultedin the massacreby state officialsof thirty-oneprisonersand nine guards,pushed Jaffe to decide between the two. She vividly rememberswhite feminists arguingthat there was no room for remorsefor the "malechauvinists" who had died at Attica. Jaffe disagreed vehemently, arguing that if white feminists could not understandAtticaas a feministissue, then she was not a feminist. At the time, Blackactivist and lawyerFlorynceKennedyhad said: "Wedo not supportAttica.We AREAttica.We areAtticaor we are nothing." Jaffe claimed: "Thatabout summed up my feelings on the sub29 ject. Withthis consciousness,and her increasingawarenessof the violence of the state againstthe BlackPanthers,antiwarprotesters,and liberation struggles around the world, Jaffe continued to work with the Weather Underground. She went underground from 1970 to 1978. Naomi Jaffe, like other white women working with the Black Power movement, were turned off by a feminism that they considered both


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bourgeoisand reductionist.They stepped out of what antiracisthistorian Sherna BergerGluckhas termed "the master historical narrative," and they have been writtenout of it by historianswho have relied upon a telling of Second Wave feminism that focused solely on gender oppression. Although the late 196os and early 1970s might have been the

for feminists in CR groups, from the perspec"heyday" white "radical" white antiracists,the early 1970s were a low point of feminism-a tive of time when many women who were committedto an antiracistanalysis had to put their feminism on the back burner in order to work with women and men of colorand againstracism. Coincidingwith the frequentassumptionthat 1969 to 1974 was the feminism,"many feministhistoriansconsider 1972to height of "radical
1982 as the period of mass mobilization and 1983 to 1991 as a period of

feminist abeyance.30 Ironically,the years that sociologistsVerta Taylor and Nancy Whittierconsiderthe period of mass mobilizationfor feminists (1972-82) arethe yearsthat ChelaSandovalidentifiesas the period when "ideological differencesdividedand helped to dissipatethe moveFor ment fromwithin."31 antiracistwomen (bothwhite and of color),the best days of feminism were yet to come when, as BarbaraSmith explains, "Thoseissues that had divided many of the movement's constituencies-such as racism, anti-Semitism,ableism, ageism, and classism-were put out on the table."32 Ironically, the very period that white feminist historians typically treat as a period of decline within the movement is the period of mass mobilizationamong antiracistwomen-both straight and lesbian. The very year that Taylorand Whittierconsider the end of mass mobilization because the ERAfailed to be ratified,1982, is the year that Gluck rightfullycites as the beginningof a feminism far more expansivethan had previously existed. She writes: "By1982, on the heels of difficult political struggle waged by activist scholars of color, ground breaking essays and anthologies by and about women of color opened a new chapterin U.S. feminism. The future of the women's movement in the U.S. was reshaped irrevocably by the introduction of the expansive notion of feminisms."33 AngelaDavis concurs,citing 1981,with the publication of This Bridge Called My Back, as the year when women of due colorhad developedas a "newpoliticalsubject," to substantialwork done in multiplearenas.3 In fact, periodizationof the women's movement from the point of feminismwould treat the late 196os and early 1970s view of multiracial as its origin and the mid-197os, 1980s, and 199os as a height. A time line of that period shows a flourishingmultiracialfeminist movement. In 1977,the CombaheeRiver CollectiveStatementwas first published;
in 1979, Conditions: Five, the Black women's issue, was published, the First National Third World Lesbian Conference was held, and Assata Shakur escaped from prison in New Jersey with the help of prison

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In activists.35 1981, ByllyeAveryfounded the National BlackWomen's Health Projectin Atlanta;BerniceJohnson Reagongave her now-classic speech on coalition politics at the West CoastWomen'sMusic Festival in Yosemite; and the National Women's Studies Association held its first conferenceto deal with racism as a centraltheme, in Storrs,Connecticut, where there were multiple animated interventions against racism and anti-Semitismin the women's movement and from which and Women's emergedAdrienne Rich'sexquisite essay, "Disobedience Then, 1984 was the year of the New York Women against Studies.""36 Rape Conference,a multiracial,multiethnicconferencethat confronted multiple challenges facing women organizingagainst violence against women-by partners, police, social service agencies, and poverty. In 1985, the United Nations Decade for Women conference in Nairobi, was namedthe first Kenya,took place;that same year,WilmaMankiller chief of the CherokeeNation. In 1986, the NationalWomen's principal Studies Associationconferencewas held at Spelman College.The next and year, 1987,the SupremeCourtruledthat the Immigration Naturalization Service must interpretthe 198os' RefugeeAct more broadlyto recognize refugees from CentralAmerica, a ruling that reflected the work on the part of thousands of activists, many of whom were femiAmerica. nists, to end U.S. interventionin Central In 1991, Elsa Barkely Brown, BarbaraRansby, and Deborah King launched the campaigncalled AfricanAmericanWomen in Defense of the Ourselves,within minutes of Anita Hill'stestimonyregarding nomination of Clarence Thomas to the Supreme Court. Their organizing included an advertisementin the New YorkTimes and six Blacknewspapers which included the names of 1,603 Black women. The 1982 defeat of the ERA did not signal a period of abeyance for multiracial feminism. In fact, multiracialfeminism flourishedin the 198os, despite the country'sturn to the Right. SecondWavefeminism from the vantagepoint of the Understanding BlackPowermovementand multiracial feminismalso shows the limit of the frequent assignment of the term "radical" only to the white antifeministsof late 1960s and early1970s. Manyfeministhistopatriarchal rianslink the developmentof radicalfeminismto the creationof several Radicalesbians, WITCH, antipatriarchy organizations-theRedstockings, and other CRgroups.How the term "radical" used by feministhistoriis ans does not square,however,with how women of color and white antiracists used that term from the 196o0s throughthe 198os. What does it mean when feministhistoriansapplythe term "radical" white, antipato triarchywomen but not to antiracistwhite women and women of color
(including Angela Davis, Kathleen Cleaver, Marilyn Buck, Anna Mae Aquash, Susan Saxe, Vicki Gabriner, and Laura Whitehorn) of the same era whose "radicalism"included attention to race, gender, and imperialism and a belief that revolution might require literally laying their lives


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on the line? These radical women include political prisoners-Black, PuertoRican,and white-some of whom are still in prisonfor their antiracist activism in the 196os and 1970s. Many of these women openly identifyas feminists and/or lesbiansbut are rarelyincludedin histories of SecondWavefeminism. What does it mean when the term "radical" only assignedto white, is women when the subtitle to CherrieMoragaand Gloria antipatriarchy Anzaldfia's foundational book, This Bridge Called My Back, was To "Writings Radical Women of Color"?37 my mind, a nuanced and by accuratetelling of Second Wave feminism is one that shows why and how the term "radical" itself contested.Recognizing was that there were different groups who used the term "radical" does not mean that we then need an overarching definitionof "radical feminism"that includes all these approaches.It does mean understandingthat white feminists of the "daring be bad period"(from 1967 to 1975) do not have excluto An sive rights to the term."38 expansive history would emphasize that Second Wave feminism drew on the civil rights movement, the New Left, and the Black Power movement which, together, helped to prowomen. duce three groupsof "radical" Principles of a Movement Althoughanalysis of the feminist movementthat accountsfor competis ing views of what it means to be "radical" a step forwardin developing a complex understandingof Second Wave history, what most interests me about comparingnormativefeminist history with multiracialfeminism are the contestationsin philosophyembeddedin these coexisting frameworks. Both popular and scholarly interpretations of Second Wave feminism typicallylink two well-knownprinciplesto the moveand Is Fromthe ment-"SisterhoodIs Powerful" the "Personal Political." of view of multiracialfeminism, both principlesare a good start point but, in themselves,are not enough. and Conversations strugglesbetweenwomen of colorand white womwhitewomento thinkaboutthe limits of the popularfemen encouraged Is Therewere many reasonswhy the inist slogan "Sisterhood Powerful." editors of This Bridge CalledMy Back titled one of the sections of the WhenYouLeave,TakeYourPictureswithYou:Racismin the book, "And Women's Movement."LorraineBethel'spoem, "WhatChou Mean We White Girl? or the Cullud Lesbian Feminist Declaration of Indepento dence"("Dedicated the propositionthat all women are not equal,i.e., clarifiesthat a "we" betweenwhite and Blackis identical/lyoppressed"),
provisional, at best.39 Anthropologist Wendy Rose's critique of "white shamanism"-white people's attempt to become native in order to grow spiritually-applies as well to white feminists who treat Native American women as innately spiritual, as automatically their spiritual mothers.40 Cross-racial struggle made clear the work that white women needed

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to do in order for cross-racialsisterhoodto really be powerful.Among the directives were the following: Don't expect women of color to be your educators,to do all the bridgework. White women need to be the bridge-a lot of the time. Do not lump AfricanAmerican,Latina,Asian American,and NativeAmericanwomen into one category.History,culture, imperialism,language,class, region, and sexualitymake the concept of a monolithic"womenof color"indefensible.Listento women of color'sanger. It is informedby centuriesof struggle,erasure,and experience. White women, look to your own history for signs of heresy and rebellion. Do not take on the histories of Black, Latina, or American Indianwomen as your own. They are not and neverwere yours. A second principle associated with liberal and radical feminism is captured in the slogan "ThePersonal Is Political,"first used by civil rights and New Left activistsand then articulatedwith more depth and consistency by feminist activists. The idea behind the slogan is that many issues that historicallyhave been deemed "personal"-abortion, battery, unemployment, birth, death, and illness-are actually deeply politicalissues. feminism requireswomen to add anotherlevel of awareMultiracial ness-to stretch the adage from "ThePersonal Is Political"to, in the words of antiracistactivistAnne Braden,"ThePersonalIs Politicaland The PoliticalIs Personal."41 Manyissues that have been relegatedto the in fact, deeply political. At the same time, many private sphere are, political issues need to be personallycommittedto-whether you have been victimizedby those issues are not. In other words, you don't have to be part of a subordinatedgroupto know an injusticeis wrong and to stand against it. White women need not be victims of racism to recognize it is wrong and stand up againstit. Unless that is done, white women will never understand how they support racism. If the only issues that feminists deem politicalare those they have experiencedpersonally, their frame of referenceis destined to be narrowlydefined by their own lived experience. The increasing number of antiracistwhite women who moved into mixed-gender,multi-issue organizationsin the 198os and 1990osafter having helped to build women's culturalinstitutions in the 1970s and 1980s may be one of the best examples of an attempt to uphold this politic. Mab Segrest, perhaps the most prolific writer among lesbian antiracistorganizers,providesthe quintessentialexampleof this transition in her move from working on the lesbian feminist journal, Feminary, in the late 1970s and early 198os, to becoming the director of North Carolinians againstRacistand ReligiousViolencein the 198os. A
self-reflective writer, Segrest herself notes this transition in the preface to her first book, My Mama's Dead Squirrel: Lesbian Essays on Southern Culture. Segrest writes: "In the first [essay] I wrote, 'I believe that the oppression of women is the first oppression.' Now I am not so sure. Later


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I wrote,'Relationships betweenwomenmatterto me morethan anything else in my life.'Now what mattersmost is more abstractand totallyspecific:the closestwordto it, justice. ... Duringthe earlyyearsthe writing comes primarilyout of work with other lesbians; later on, from work where I am the only lesbian."42The book opens with autobiographical essays abouther familyand women'swriting,but the last essays chronicle the beginningof her organizingagainstthe Klan-essaysthat became to the backdrop her secondbook,Memoirof a Race Traitor.In Segrest's view, by 1983, her work in building lesbian culture-through editing Feminary and her own writing-"no longer seemed enough, it seemed too literary." with Segrestfoundherselfboth "inspired and frustrated by the lesbianfeministmovement." Segrestrecallsthat she had sat in manyroomsandparticipated manyconversations in between lesbians aboutpainfuldifferences race and class, aboutanti-Semitism in and and but ageism ablebodiedism. hadbeenharddiscussions, theyhadgiven They me someglimpseof the possibility spinning widerlesbianmovement, of a a movement trulyincorporates that as But diversity its strength. in all women's those discussions, difficult theywere,we had neverbeen out to kill each as other.In the facesof Klan Nazimen-andwomen-inNorthCarolinasaw and I whowouldkillus all. I felt I needed shiftfromperfecting to consciouspeople I nessto putting consciousness the continual of action. wanted answer to test to that I a question hadresonated the through lesbian writing hadtakenmostto "What youundertake?"43 will heart: This, I believe,remainsa doggedand crucialquestionbeforeus and one that requiresus to move beyondlitanies ultimatelybased on only a narrowgroup'ssurvival. The tremendous strength of autonomous feminist institutions-the festivals, conferences,bookstores,women's studies departments,women's health centers-were the artistic,political,and social contributions activists helped to generate. All of these culturalinstitutions required women to ask of themselvesand others a pivotalquestionAudreLorde had posited:Are you doing your work?And yet, by the mid-198os, the resurgenceof the radicalRightin the United Statesthat fueled a monumental backlashagainstgays and lesbians, people of color, and women feminists to ask again:Where and with across the races led multiracial whom are you doing your work? Many antiracist feminists who had helped to build the largely women-led culturalinstitutions that left a feminismmoved on, into mixed-gender, multipapertrail of multiracial racialgrassrootsorganizations, workingagainstthe Klan,in supportof affirmative actionand immigrantrights,and againstpolicebrutalityand the prisonindustry.It is in these institutionsthat much of the hardwork
continues-in recognizing that "sisterhood is powerful" only when it is worked for and not assumed and that the "personal is political" only to the extent that one's politics go way beyond the confines of one's own individual experience.

Becky Thompson


Blueprints for Feminist Activism There are multiple strategiesfor social justice embeddedin multiracial feminism: a belief in building coalitions that are based on a respect for identity-basedgroups; attention to both process and productbut little tolerancefor "all-talk" groups;racialparityat everylevel of an organization (not added on later but initiatedfrom the start);a recognitionthat race can not be seen in binaryterms; a recognitionthat racismexists in your backyardas well as in the countriesthe United States is bombing or inhabitingeconomically;and a recognitionof the limits to pacifism when people in struggle are up against the most powerfulstate in the feminism is not just anotherbrand of feminism that world. Multiracial can be taught alongside liberal, radical,and socialist feminism. Multiracialfeminism is the heart of an inclusivewomen'sliberationstruggle. The race-class-gender-sexuality-nationality frameworkthrough which multiracialfeminism operatesencompassesand goes way beyondliberal, radical,and socialist feminist priorities-and it alwayshas. Teaching SecondWavefeministhistoryrequireschroniclinghow hegemonicfemfeminism and the limits of that inism came to be written about as "the" model. Teaching Second Wave history by chroniclingthe rise of multiracial feminism challenges limited categories because it puts social justice and antiracism at the center of attention. This does not mean that the work done within hegemonicfeminism did not exist or was not useful. It does mean that it was limited in its goals and effectiveness. Althoughthe strategies for multiracialfeminism were firmly established in the 1970s and 198os, I contend that these principlesremain a blueprint for progressive,feminist, antiraciststruggle in this millennium. These are principleswe will need in orderto build on the momentum begun in Seattle (as activist energy shocked the World Trade Organization out of its complacency) while we refuse to reproduce the overwhelminglywhite composition of most of the groups involved in that protest.We will need the principlesintroducedby multiracialfeminism to sustain a critiqueof the punishmentindustrythat accountsfor the increasingnumberof women caughtin the penal system. These are principleswe will need to nurturewhat criticalrace theorist MariMatsuda has named a "jurisprudence of antisubordination." Matsuda writes: "Ajurisprudence of antisubordinationis an attempt to bring home the lost ones, to make them part of the center, to end the soulkilling tyranny of inside/outside thinking. Accountabilityrevisited. I want to bringhome the women who hate their own bodies so much that they would let a surgeon'shand cut fat from it, or a man's batter and bruise it. I want to bring home the hungry ones eating from the trashbins; the angry ones who call me names; the little ones in foster care."" The principles of antisubordination embedded in multiracial feminism, in antiracism feminism, are a crucial piece of this agenda. Because written histories of social movements are typically one gen-


Becky Thompson

erationbehind the movementsthemselves,it makes sense that histories of the feminist movement are just now emerging.That timing means that now is the time to interruptnormativeaccountsbefore they begin to repeatthemselves, each time, sounding more like "thetruth"simply because of the repetitionof the retelling.This interruptionis necessary with regardto SecondWavefeminismas well as earliermovements. In her retrospectiveaccount of Black nationalism of the late 196os and early 197os, Angela Davis describeshow broad-basednationalism has droppedalmost completelyout of the frame of referencein popular of representations the BlackPowermovement.This nationalismincluded alliances between Black and Chicanostudies, in which students in San Diego were demandingthe creationof a college called LumumbaZapata,and Huey Newton was callingfor an end to "verbal bashing, gay urging an examination of black male sexuality, and calling for an alliancewith the developinggay liberationmovement."Davis writes: "I resent that the legacy I consider my own-one I also helped to construct-has been renderedinvisible.Youngpeople with 'nationalist' proclivities ought, at least, to have the opportunityto choose which tradition of nationalism they will embrace. How will they position themselves en masse in defense of women'srights, in defense of gay rights, if they are not awareof the historicalprecedentsfor such positionings?"45 In a parallelway, I want young women to knowthe rich,complicated, contentious,and visionaryhistory of multiracialfeminism and to know the nuanced controversieswithin Second Wave feminism. I want them to know that ShirleyChisholmran for presidentin 1972;that Celestine Warewrote a Blackradicalfeminist text in the 1970s which offered an inspiringconceptionof revolutionwith a deep sense of humanity;that before MabSegrestwent to workfor an organization againstthe Klanin North Carolina,she and others publishedan independentlesbianjournal in the 1970s that included some of the most important and compelling race-consciouswritingby white women and women of color to date.46I want people to know that there are antiracistfeminist women currentlyin prison for their antiracistactivismin the 1960s and since.47 Among them is Marilyn Buck, a poet, political prisoner and, in her words, "a feminist with a small 'f,'"who is serving an eighty-yearsenHer tence in California.48 poems, including "Tothe Woman Standing Behind Me in Line Who Asks Me How LongThis BlackHistoryMonth Is Going to Last,"eloquently capture why Buck must be included in feminism.49 writes: She tellings of multiracial the whole month even if it is the shortestmonth a good time in thisprison life you stare at me is and ask why I think February so damnedfine



I take a breath prisonersfight for February African voices cross razor wire cut throughtheflim-flam ofAmerikkanhistory call its crueltiesout confirmthe genius ofsurvival creation and plain ole enduring a celebration! The woman dropsher gaze looks awayand wishes she had not asked confusedthat white skin did not guarantee a conversationshe wantedto have she hasn'tspokento me since I think I'lltry to stand in line with her again MarilynBuck'spoems and the work of other multiracialfeminist activists help show that the struggle against racism is hardlylinear, that the consolidation of white-biased feminism was clearly costly to early Second Wave feminism, and that we must dig deep to represent the feminist movementthat does justice to an antiracistvision.
NOTES The author would like to thank several people for their generous help on this article, and two Feminist Studies anonymous especially Monisha Das Gupta,Diane Harriford, reviewers. 1. For examples of histories that focus on white feminism, see Sheila Tobias,Faces of Feminism: An Activist's Reflections on the Women'sMovement (Boulder:Westview Press, 1997); Barbara Ryan, Feminism and the Women'sMovement: Dynamics of Change in Social MovementIdeology and Activism (New York:Routledge,1992); Alice Echols, Daring to Be Bad: Radical Feminism in America, 1967-1975 (Minneapolis: Universityof MinnesotaPress, 1989). 2. Chela Sandoval,Methodologyof the Oppressed(Minneapolis:Universityof Minnesota Press, 2000), 41-42.

3. Of these branches of feminism (liberal, socialist, and radical), socialist feminism, which treats sexism and classism as interrelatedforms of oppression, may have made the most concerted effort to develop an antiracist agenda in the 1970s. For example, "TheCombaheeRiver CollectiveStatement"was first published in Zillah Eisenstein's CapitalistPatriarchy and the Casefor Socialist Feminism (New York:MonthlyReview


Becky Thompson

Press, 1979), 362-72, before it was publishedin BarbaraSmith's,Home Girls:A Black FeministAnthology (New York:KitchenTable,Women of ColorPress, 1983). Radical America, a journal founded in 1967 and whose contributorsand editors include many socialist feminists, consistently published articles that examined the relationshipbetween race, class, and gender. The 1970s' socialist feminist organization,the Chicago of Women'sLiberation Union, which consideredqualitypubliceducation,redistribution wealth, and accessible childcarekey to a feminist agenda, also made room for a race analysisby not privilegingsexism over otherforms of oppression.However,the fact that socialist feminist organizationswere typicallywhite dominated and were largely confined to academicand/or middle-classcircleslimited their effectivenessand visibilityas an antiracistpresencein earlySecondWavefeminism.For earlysocialistfeminist documents, see RosalynBaxandalland LindaGordon,eds., Dear Sisters: Dispatchesfrom LiberationMovement(New York:BasicBooks,2000). the Women's 4. For an expandeddiscussionof the contributionsand limitationsof white antiracism from the 1950s to the present, see Becky Thompson,A Promise and a Way of Life: WhiteAntiracistActivism (Minneapolis: Universityof MinnesotaPress, 2001). 5. For a discussion of the term "multiracialfeminism," see Maxine Baca Zinn and Bonnie Thornton Dill, "TheorizingDifference from MultiracialFeminism,"Feminist
Studies 22 (summer 1996): 321-31.

Politics:Turningthe Century," Home Girls, in 6. BerniceJohnson Reagon, "Coalition 356-69; PatriciaHill Collins,Black Feminist Thought:Knowledge,Consciousness,and the Politics of Empowerment(Boston:Unwin Hyman, 1990), 11;BarbaraSmith, introduction,Home Girls,xxxii;Cherrie eds., ThisBridge Called Moragaand GloriaAnzaldlia, My Back: Writingsby Radical Womenof Color (New York:KitchenTable,Women of WesternEyes: FeministScholarColorPress, 1981);Chandra TalpadeMohanty,"Under in ship and ColonialDiscourses," ThirdWorldWomenand the Politicsof Feminism,ed. ChandraTalpade Mohanty, Ann Russo, and Lourdes Torres (Bloomington: Indiana UniversityPress, 1991), 51-80; Paula GunnAllen, "WhoIs YourMother?Red Roots of White Feminism,"in her The Sacred Hoop: Recovering the Feminine in American Indian Traditions(Boston:Beacon Press, 1986), 209-21; AdrienneRich, Blood, Bread, and Poetry (New York:Norton, 1986); PatriciaWilliams, TheAlchemy of Race and Harvard Press,1991). University Rights(Cambridge: to 7. Here I am using the term "feminist" describecollectiveactiondesignedto confront interlockingrace, class, gender, and sexual oppressions(and other systematicdiscrimination). Althoughmany women in these organizationsexplicitlyreferredto themselves fromtheir earliestpoliticalwork,others have used such terms as "womanas "feminist" and women of color,""revolutionary," "socialactivist."Hesitation among ist," "radical often signaled an unwillingnessto women of color about the use of the term "feminist" be associated with white-led feminism, but this wariness did not mean they were not doing gender-conscious,justice work. The tendency not to include gender-conscious activism by women of color in dominant versions of Second Wave history unless the fails to accountfor the multipleterms women of color women used the term "feminist" have historicallyused to designateactivismthat,keeps women at the center of analysis and attendsto interlocking oppressions.Althoughthe formationof a women'sgroup-an Asian women'sfriendshipgroup, a Blackwomen's churchgroup or a Native American women's arts council-is not inherentlya feminist group,those organizationsthat conor front gender, race, sexual, and class oppression, whether named as "feminist" not, feminism. need to be consideredas integralto multiracial Center:BlackFeministEmergencein the 8. BenitaRoth, "TheMakingof the Vanguard 1960s and 1970s," in Still Lifting, Still Climbing:African American Women'sContemporary Activism, ed. KimberlySpringer (New York:New York University Press,
1999), 71.

9. ShernaBergerGluck,"WhoseFeminism,Whose History?Reflectionson Excavating in Activismand Feminist the Historyof (the) U.S. Women'sMovement(s)," Community

Becky Thompson


Politics: Organizing across Race, Class, and Gender,ed. Nancy A. Naples (New York: Routledge,1998), 38-39. A East lo. MiyaIwataki,"The AsianWomen'sMovement: Retrospective," Wind(spring/
summer 1983): 35-41; Gluck, 39-41.

11. Sonia Shah, "Presenting Blue Goddess:Towarda National Pan-AsianFeminist the Agenda,"in The State of Asian America: Activism and Resistance in the 199os, ed. KarinAguilar-San Juan (Boston:SouthEnd Press, 1994), 147-58. Indian Women:At the Center 12. M. Annette Jaimes with Theresa Halsey, "American of Indigenous Resistance in ContemporaryNorth America,"in The State of Native America: Genocide, Colonization, and Resistance, ed. M. Annette Jaimes (Boston:
South End Press, 1992), 329. 13. Stephanie Autumn, ". .. This Air, This Land, This Water-If We Don't Start Organiz-

ing Now, We'llLose It,"Big Mama Rag 11(April1983): 4, 5. of 14. For an insightfulanalysisof the multidimensionality Blacknationalismof the late 1960s and early 1970s, see Angela Davis, "BlackNationalism: The Sixties and the Nineties,"in TheAngela Davis Reader,ed. Joy James (Malden,Mass.:Blackwell,1998), 289-96.
15. Ibid., 15, 314.

16. DeborahGrayWhite, Too Heavy a Load: Black Womenin Defense of Themselves

(New York: Norton, 1999), 242. 17. Ibid., 242-53.

in 18. CombaheeRiverCollective,"TheCombaheeRiver CollectiveStatement," Home

Girls, 272-82.

19. See Moragaand Anzalduia. 20. Toni Cade,ed., TheBlack Woman:An Anthology(New York:Signet,1970);Maxine Hong Kingston, The Woman Warrior (New York:Vintage Books, 1977); Moragaand Smith. Anzalduia; 21. Assata Shakur,Assata: An Autobiography (Chicago:LawrenceHill Books, 1987),

22. AngelaDavis,Angela Davis: An Autobiography(New York:RandomHouse, 1974). 23. Nancy MacLean,"TheHidden History of AffirmativeAction: WorkingWomen's FeministStudies 25 (spring1999):47. Strugglesin the 1970s and the Genderof Class," 24. As a womanwho was introducedto antiracistworkthroughthe feminist movement of the late 1970s-a movementshapedin large part by women of color who calledthemand selves "womanists," women of color"-I came to my interest in "feminists," "radical recastingthe chronologyof SecondWavefeminismespeciallyhopingto learn how white antiracistwomen positioned themselves vis-a-vis Second Wave feminism. I wanted to learn how sexism played itself out in the 1960s and how antiracist white women responded to Second Wave feminism. And I wanted to find out whether the antiracist baton carriedin the 1960s was passed on or droppedby feminist activists. One of the most compellinglessons I learned from white women who came of age politicallybefore or duringthe civil rights and Black Power movementswas how difficult it was for manyof them to relateto or embracefeminismof the late 1960s and early As 1970s. White antiracistwomen resisted sexism in SDS and in militantorganizations. they talked about the exclusions they faced in the 1960s' organizationsand criticized early feminist organizingthat consideredgender oppression its main target, I realized how much differentthe feminist movementthey saw in the early 1970swas fromwhat I was introducedto in the late 1970s. By then, there was a criticalmass of seasonedfeminists who were keeping race at the center of the agenda. They were teaching younger feminists that race, class, gender, and sexualityare inextricably connectedand that it is not possibleto call oneself a feministwithoutdealingwith race. 25. Several key Jewish feminist texts that addressed how to take racism and antiSemitismseriouslyin feminist activismwere publishedduringthis period and included N.Y.: EvelynTorton Beck,ed., Nice Jewish Girls:A LesbianAnthology (Trumansburg,


Becky Thompson

and CrossingPress, 1982); Melanie Kaye/Kantrowitz Irena Klepfisz,eds., The Tribeof Dina: A Jewish Women's Anthology (Boston: BeaconPress, 1989), first publishedas a special issue of Sinister Wisdom, nos. 29/30 (1986); Melanie Kaye/Kantrowitz,The Issue Is Power: Essays on Women,Jews, Violence, and Resistance (San Francisco: Aunt Lute, 1992); Irena Klepfisz,Periods of Stress (Brooklyn,N.Y.: Out & Out Books, Mass.:PersephonePress, 1982). 1977),and Keeperof Accounts(Watertown, For key antiracist lesbian texts, see Adrienne Rich, On Lies, Secrets, and Silence: SelectedProse, 1966-1978(New York:Norton, 1979);Joan Gibbsand SaraBennett,Top Ranking:A Collectionof Articles on Racism and Classismin the Lesbian Community (New York: Come! Unity Press, 1980); Mab Segrest, My Mama's Dead Squirrel: LesbianEssays on SouthernCulture(Ithaca,N.Y.:FirebrandBooks,1985); Elly Bulkin, Minnie BrucePratt,and Barbara Smith, Yoursin Struggle: ThreeFeministPerspectives on Anti-Semitismand Racism (Brooklyn, N.Y.:LongHaulPress, 1984). 26. EllenWillis,forewordto Daring to Be Bad, vii.
27. Barbara Ryan.

28. HowardZinn,A People'sHistory of the UnitedStates (NewYork:HarperPerennial,

1990), 504-13.

29. For a publishedversion of FlorynceKennedy's position on Atticaand Naomi Jaffe's and Smith,"'FeistyCharacters' 'OtherPeople'sCauses,' in The perspective,see Barbara " FeministMemoir Project: Voicesfrom Women'sLiberation,ed. RachelBlau DuPlessis and Ann Snitow(NewYork:ThreeRiversPress),479-81. 30. Verta Taylor and Nancy Whittier, "TheNew Feminist Movement,"in Feminist Frontiers IV, ed. Laurel Richardson, Verta Taylor, and Nancy Whittier (New York:
McGraw-Hill, 1997), 544-45.

31. Chela Sandoval,"Feminismand Racism:A Reporton the 1981 National Women's Studies Association Conference,"in Making Face, Making Soul: Haciendo Caras: Creativeand CriticalPerspectivesby Womenof Color,ed. GloriaAnzaldfia(San Francisco: Aunt Lute, 1990), 55.

32. Smith,"'FeistyCharacters,'479-80. " 33. Gluck,32.

34. James, 313.

35. Activistswho helped AssataShakurescapeincludepoliticalprisonersMarilynBuck, SusanRosenberg,and Blackmale revolutionaries. SylviaBaraldini, 36. Adrienne Rich, "Disobedienceand Women's Studies,"Blood, Bread, and Poetry (New York:Norton,1986), 76-84. 37. Moragaand Anzalduia. that phrasefromAlice Echols'schroniclingof white radicalfeminist 38. I am borrowing history. in ChouMean We,WhiteGirl," Conditions:Five (1979):86. Bethel,"What 39. Lorraine in 40. Wendy Rose, "TheGreatPretenders:FurtherReflectionson Whiteshamanism," TheState of Native America,403-23. 41. Thompson. See also Anne Braden, The Wall Between (Knoxville: University of Tennessee Press, 1999); Anne Braden, "A Second Open Letter to Southern White
Women," Southern Exposure 6 (winter 1977): 50.

42. Segrest,My Mama'sDead Squirrel,12. Forum 13 43. Mab Segrest,"Fearto Joy: Fightingthe Klan," Sojourner:The Women's (November1987):20. Law, and a Juris44. Mari Matsuda,"Voicesof America:Accent, Antidiscrimination
prudence for the Last Reconstruction," Yale Law Journal o100(March 1991): 1405.

Nationalism," 292. 45. Davis,"Black 46. See Feminary: A Feminist Journal for the South Emphasizing Lesbian Visions. at SchlesingerLibrary the RadcliffeInstitutefor AdvancedStudyat HarvardUniversity has scatteredissues of Feminary. Duke UniversityRare Book,Manuscript,and Special has CollectionLibrary vols. 5-15 from 1974-1985.For analysisof the import of working

Becky Thompson


on this journal on Mab Segrest's consciousness and activism, see Jean Hardisty, Mab Segrest ConfrontsRacism,"Sojourner: The Women'sForum 19 "Writer/Activist
(August 1994): 1-2; Segrest, My Mama's Dead Squirrel.

47. MarilynBuck, Linda Evans, LauraWhitehorn, and KathyBoudin are among the white political prisoners who are either currently in prison or, in the case of Laura Whitehorn and Linda Evans, recently released, serving sentences whose length and severitycan only be understoodas retaliationfor their principled,antiracistpolitics. for 48. MarilynBuckis in a federalprison in Dublin,California, allegedconspiraciesto free politicalprisoners,to protest governmentpolicies throughthe use of violence, and to raisefunds for Blackliberationorganizations. 49. MarilynBuck'spoem, "Tothe Woman Standingbehind Me in Line Who Asks Me How LongThis BlackHistoryMonthIs Goingto Last," reprintedwith writtenpermisis sion fromthe author.

Multiracial Feminism
1959 1960 1964 1965 1966 1968 1969 1970 1971 1972 1973 1974


Cuban Revolution

Civil Rights Act passed

National Welfare Rights Organization

Shirley Chisholm elected to

The Black Woman, Toni Cade

Angela Davis acquitted of all charges

SNCC founded Immigrationand NationalityAct

Stonewall uprising

Women of All Red Nations founded

Combahee River Collective

Attica Trailof rebellion Broken Treaties

Johnson signs AffirmativeAction executive order

Indians of All Tribes occupation of Alcatraz

National Hijas de Black Feminist Cuauhtemoc Chicana group Organization Coalition of Labor Union Women

Voting Rights Act

Vancouver Indochinese Women's Conference ThirdWorld Liberation Front student strikes

Asian American Women's Center, Los Angeles Coalition of 100 Black Women National Conference of Puerto Rico Women founded

Mexican American Women's National Association

American Indian Movement founded

National Chicana American Indian Conference in Movement Houston, Texas occupation of Wounded Knee

U.N. Confer on Wom Mexico

1980 1981 1982 1983 1984 1985 1987 1990 1991 1992 1993

of feminism Height multiracial KitchenTable Womenof ColorPress launched But Some of Us Are Brave, Hull,Scott, and Smith NYWomen against Rape Conference National Women's Studies Association at Spelman College Bndges founded for Jewish feminists and friends Los Angeles rebellion following acquittal of police involved in Rodney King beating

I This Bridge Yoursin My Mama's Called My Back, Struggle, Dead ed. Moragaand Pratt, Squirrel, Anzaldia Bulkin, Mab Segrest I I Smith I Ain'tI a Woman, MakingWaves, U.N. World bell hooks Asian Women Conference United of on Women, California Nairobi B. J. Reagon's coalition politics speech The Color Purple, Alice Walker NationalWomen's ThirdWorld Studies Association Women and Conference, Conn. Feminist Perspectives Conference A Gathering of Spirit, Beth Brant

W S B co m M E

African American Women in Defense of Ourselves

Supreme Court rulingthat INS must interpret 1980 Refugee Act more broadly WilmaMankiller first principal chief of Cherokee Nation

OurFeet Walkthe S Women of South Asi Descent Collective

Encuentro:Latin AmericanFeminist Meeting, Argentina

Bla in t Co Ma

Menavi,South Asian battered I women's Home Girls: A Black Feminist organization Anthology, ed. Barbara National Black Encuentro:Latin Smith Women's AmericanFeminist Health Project founded Meeting, Bogota

Hegemonic Feminism
1963 1964 1966 1967 1969 1970 1971 1972 1973 1975 1976

of radical feminism Heydaywhite

CivilRights Act passed National Organization for Women founded New York Radical Women formed Redstockings founded Ms. magazine published


Against Our Will, Brownmiller

The Feminine Mystique, Betty Friedan

Sisterhood Is Powerful, Morgan

Congress passes Title IX

Hyde Amendment

Equal Pay Act

Our Bodies, Ourselves, Boston Women's Health Book Collective

Furies founded

Roe v. Wade legalized abortion

Episcopal church ordained 11 women Signs founded

National Women's Political Caucus Congress passes Equal Rights Amendment

Bella Abzug elected to Congress

Equal Opportunity Act passed

Feminist Studies founded

Feminism I Hegemonic
1980 1
Mas Mobilization



1984 of Abeyance feminism





Sally Ride, first U.S. woman in space Continental Can v. Minnesota, landmark sexual harassment case ERAnot ratified GeraldineFerraro nominated as Democratic vice presidential candidate


Familyand Medical Leave Act passed Tailhook scandal

Fo see "T Fe (N

In a Different Voice,Carol Gillhgan

Older Women's League founded

How Schools Shortchange Girls,American Association of University Women report

Toward Comparative a FeministMovement

CivilRights Movement(1955-1966)

Black Power Movement(1966-1974)

Chicano LiberationMovement(1965-1975)




Asian AmericanMovement(1968-mid-1970s)