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October 3

Compiled and Written by Irene Stuber
who is solely responsible for its content.


Males would rather eat sand

Leonora Jackson, violinist

Queen barred from ruling France

Researcher of DNA

Women's bread riots of 1863

Kabuki invented by woman


QUOTES by Dorothy Thompson, Marie MacConnell, and Ann Lewis.

Posted 09-20-1999

Males Would Rather Eat Sand

      In 1992 Ann Druyon and her husband Carl Sagan, wrote a fascinating magazine article about Imo, "a genius... an Archimedes or an Edison" among the macaques monkeys who lived on a small Japanese island. The natural food supply of the island became depleted and 'to survive they were provisioned (by the Japanese) with sweet potatoes and wheat dumped on the shore.' "
      A sandy shore - and of course sand got into the food. In 1953, a young female named Imo figured out she could rinse the sand off her sweet potato in a nearby brook.
      Other monkeys copied her - except the adult male monkeys who also did not copy her other discovery that dumping wheat into the water would cause the sand to sink and the clean wheat to float.
      Younger male monkeys of the next generation copied Imo's methods without problems because they learned how to do it from their mothers. But the older adult males would not do it.
      Druyon and Sagan pointed out that macaque society was very much like a human society: the males fiercely patriarchal and hierarchal.
"The reluctance of the adult males must tell us something," Sagan and Druyon wrote. "They are fiercely competitive and hierarchy-ridden. They are not much given to friendships or even to alliances. Perhaps they felt impending humiliation - if they were to imitate Imo, they would be following her lead, becoming in some sense subservient to her and thereby losing dominance status. They surmised that to copy a female would make them subservient to her.
      "They would rather eat sand."
            -- From an article in Parade magazine, by Carl Sagan and Ann Druyon, "What Makes Us Different?"

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Lenora Jackson, Violinist

      Leonora Jackson - U.S. violinist born in 1879. LJ was trained on the violin in Europe and toured there before returning to the United States. U.S. music critics attempted to vilify her, evidently because she'd cancelled several American tours to stay in Eruope. When she did tour the U.S. it was to raves. Until 1907 she gave more than 150 concerts a year. She all but retired from public performing during her two marriages. She died in 1969.

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France is Too Noble a Kingdom

      Juana II - B.1310, Juana II was Queen of Navarre 1328-1349 although she should have been Queen of France. Wanting a son that his wife could not produce, Juana's father Louis had her mother Marguarite smothered between two mattresses. He married again but his only son from a second wife died shortly after birth leaving Juana the true heir to the French throne.
      Juana was prevented from assuming the French throne under Salic law that decreed that land could not be inherited by a woman. The barons of the time added, "Lilies do not spin wool. France is too noble a kingdom to be entrusted to a woman." Navarre, located in northern Spain and southern France, is somewhat smaller than the State of Connecticut. It was later split between France and Spain.

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Basic Researcher of DNA

        Dr. Mary Ellen Jones - U.S. Physician. MEJ did basic research in the then fledgling science of DNA.
      She was the first woman to head a department in the School of Medicine at the University of North Carolina. MEH was chair of the department of biochemistry and nutrition. She began her research at Massachusetts General Hospital, was a professor at Brandeis University and the University of Southern California before settling at North Carolina.

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Mary Jackson Led Bread Riots in 1863

        Mary Jackson U.S. civil rights activist. In 1863, MJ led more than a thousand women in bread riots in Richmond, Virginia. The women wanted food at affordable prices. Confederate President Jefferson Davis attempted to disperse the crowd with words and money from his pocket, but when the women didn't accept his excuses, the Southern gentlemen called in the city police to disperse the women with clubs.
      It is not reported that the men of the city accepted less food on their tables in an era when the men of the family ate first and women got the leftovers.(In some parts of the country, particularly rural areas, the tradition of men eating their fill first while the women waited on them extended into the 1960s... believe it or not. And may still be going on in some isolated, ultra-conservative areas.
      Women were traditionally not allowed to sit down at the table to eat what was left until the men left the table.
      A teacher friend of the author of Women of Achievement and Herstory was astonished in 1975 when the women set up a welcome-to-the-new-teachers buffet in a Southern city and then stood aside for the men to take their fill before helping themselves.
"Those men just about cleaned everything out and everything was cold by the time we women were allowed to eat. Well, the next time they held a gathering with a buffet, I got up there with the men. Some of men were so astonished that they actually stood aside to let me go ahead. From then on out, the women and men stood in line together!"
      [After the first time we ran this article on the WOAH email list, we heard from women in many rural Northern states who had the same experiences so it wasn't only a Southern "tradition." One clergyman from Minnesota defended the practice in 1992 as a "woman's duty."]

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Kabuki Developed By a Woman - Then Women Were Banned From Performing It

        In the early 1600s, Okuni (a woman) developed a new kind of dance for Japanese theater that became known as Kabuki.
      However, in 1629 the Japanese government decided that since European women were not allowed on the stage because such public displays and performances were immoral, Japanese women would be subject to the same rules. To this day, Kabuki is performed by an all-male cast with men known as onnagata portraying women.
      The change in the treatment of Japanese women can be traced to the Christian attitude in Japan. Large numbers of Jesuits followed Francis Xavier's original trip to Japan in 1549 and by the 17th century, several of its daimyo had converted and one even sent an envoy to Rome. Up to the Christian- influencing-period, Japanese women enjoyed a strong independence.

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DIED 10-03-1369, Margaret Maultasch, aka Margaret of Tirol, countess of Tirol. Her two marriages and political machinations were unsuccessful in keeping Tirol (Tyrol) from becoming part of western Austria.

B. 10-03-1613, Marion Delorme - celebrated French courtesan. Historians are able to list by name and dates any number of the lovers of women they call courtesans but seem unable to recite with accuracy the living conditions of women during the period, or even show much interest in their life experiences other than as servants or conveniences of men. This fortifies the contention of the author of WOAH that history is truly HIS story and nothing more. Women must regain their past and rewrite it with the experiences of both men and women for a true estoria.
      Her salons were important meeting places for literary and political figures but during the Fronde, she hosted the wrong side so she died in poverty. The Cardinal de Rochelieu is recorded by historians as one of her lovers.

B. 10-03-1849, Jeannette Leonard Gilder - U.S. journalist and literary critic. Before she became a staff member, then editor of a Newark, NJ newspaper, JLG worked at several menial jobs to help support her large family after her father died. JLG's talent was recognized quickly and she was wooed to New York where she established a reputation as a literary critic as well as journalist. She was a columnist for several publications, did free-lancing, and was editor of various magazines and books. Her novels were never a great success but her autobiography, Autobiography of a Tomboy (1900) and Tomboy at Work (1904) did well.

B. 10-03-1858, Eleonora Duse - Italian born actor, one of the greatest actors of all time.
      ED could blush or turn pale at will and it was said that she so submerged herself in each role that her body language changed so much that at times she was unrecognizable. She would change her walk, the way her body moved, etc.
      Her stage presence was overwhelming. Ibsen said she went beyond realism in her interpretation of Nora in Doll's House.
      Some critics noted that she played characters with such a depth that she projected their actions and thoughts "between the lines." She toured worldwide several times - always to packed audiences. She had a number of well known affairs with both men and women.
      She died on tour in the U.S. when she was 66. Her body was buried in Italy.

B. 10-03-1860, Annie Horniman - English theater manager. AH pioneered repertory theatre in Britain. A wealthy heiress, she financed the new home of the Abbey Theatre in Dublin.
      Although her Horniman's Gaiety theatre was a rousing success and opened the way to other repertory efforts, it was closed after 13 years because of financial difficulties.
      Her repertory company toured the U.S, and inspired the formation of a number of such companies.

B. 10-03-1869, Clara Dutton Noyes - U.S. nurse. CDN established the first hospital training courses for midwives, directed assignment of nurses during World War I, was superintendent of nurses and school in several states, and was director of nursing at the Red Cross.

B. 10-03-1872, Emily Price Post- U.S. writer. Divorced and in need of funds, EPP turned to writing. Her fiction was undistinguished. At the urging of her publisher she wrote Etiquette in Society, in Business, in Politics, and at Home (1922). Retitled Etiquette, it went through 10 revised editions and 90 printings. She had a syndicated column and a radio show. In her day she was the last word in how people should act in a polite society. Some say she finally civilized the American popular culture.

B. 10-03-1877, Virginia Gildersleeve - U.S. educator. VG served as dean of Barnard College from 1911-1947, promoted women's education and paid maternity leave, and reformed the distribution requirement for B.A. to cover all fields of human knowledge through specific disciplines. With longtime companion Caroline Spurgeon, she co-founded the International Federation of University Women in 1919.
      VG took an active role in international affairs and assisted in the drafting of the United Nations charter. She worked for human rights and was the only woman on the U.S. delegation at the founding conference of the UN in San Francisco. Although technically staying single, she had the companionship of British literary scholar Caroline Spurgeon (1869-1942), and later of Elizabeth Reynard (1897-1962), professor of English at Barnard, who helped organize the WAVES, the women's naval branch in World War II. VG had doctorates in Philosophy, Literature, and Law.

B. 10-03-1886, Barbara Karinska - Russian-born costume designer. BK was responsible for the costumes worn in every major ballet presented by the New York City Ballet from 1948 to 1977. She won the Academy Award for her costume designs for the movie Joan of Arc. BK was also costume designer for the Metropolitan Opera and many Broadway shows.

B. 10-03-1893, Clara Mabel Thompson - U.S. psychiatrist and psychoanalyst. Her most lasting work may be her article "Penis Envy in Women" (1943). She denied there is such a thing as penis envy, showing that women suffered from social pressures; Karen Horner also denied Fraud's penis envy theory.

B. 10-03-1899, Gertrude Berg - U.S. radio actress, author, and producer. Famed as the Molly Goldberg, GB's trademark "Yoo-hoo! Mrs. Blo-om" always started her weekly Goldbergs shows that consistently ranked at the top of the radio and TV charts. Under various names her shows ran from 1938 to 1945, 1949-1955, and 1961-62. GB's salary was a reported $7,500 a week and she received a million dollar contract to write the series for five years. GB won a Tony for her work in A Majority of One (1959) and an Emmy for her TV work in 1950.

Event 10-03-1922: in a blatantly political move to get the women's vote that had just been granted by the federal government, Georgia Governor Thomas Hardwick appointed 87-year-old women's rights advocate Rebecca Latimer Felton to an interim seat of the U.S. Senate from Georgia.
      It was a token appointment because a special election was held in time for the seating of the winner in the Senate session. Shocking everyone Mrs. Felton traveled to Washington and made the Senate accept her credentials. She sat as a U.S. Senator for two days, Nov. 21 and 22, 1922 before the duly elected successor - who had waited like a true gentleman while Miz Felton made her point - then presented his credentials and was seated.
      Gov. Hardwick's appointment of Felton didn't endear him with the women because they remembered that Hardwick had opposed woman's suffrage and under his leadership the Georgia legislature refused to ratify the 19th amendment.

Event 10-03-1923: Microbiologist Dr. Gladys Dick, and her husband physician Dr. George Henry announced the isolation of the cause of scarlet fever. The Dick test was developed later to diagnose and treat the disease. Rumors said they were denied the Nobel prize because they patented their process for personal gain although other scientists had done the same thing.

B. 10-03-1936, Lucie Rober - French composer, organist, and teacher. LR was awarded the Grand Prix de Rome (1965). Her works are still performed extensively in France.

Event 10-03-1962: the U.S. Senate refuses to take action on a bill to require equal pay for equal work. The U.S. House of Representatives had previously passed it to benefit women engaged in interstate commerce. The equal pay bill was finally passed 05-17-1963 after fierce lobbying by women.

Event 10-03-1995: OJ Simpson is acquitted of the brutal murder of his ex-wife Nicole and her friend Ron Goldman after a trial that riveted the nation on TV for months. The decision polarizes along racial lines but as went on, polls indicate most people of all races were becoming convinced of his guilt. Within months the media openly ridicules his pledge to seek out the "real" killer as he spends most of his time time on golf courses, beaches, and in Las Vegas. Grassroot public memorials continue on the anniversary of Nicole and Ron's murders.

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      "She can be sure that is she is chaste, men will call her cold; if she is brilliant, men will call her 'like a man'; if she is witty they will suspect her virtue; if she is beautiful they will try to annex her as an asset to their own position; if she has executive abilities, they will fear her dominance."
            -- Dorothy Thompson, one of the most influential journalists of the 1930-1950 period. Her radio show was one of the most listened to in World War II.

      "Unfortunately for the women organists, the average audience accepts as necessarily good the indifferent work of many men organists, but the women must play doubly well to be appreciated, and then - most wonderful of compliments! - 'She plays as well as the men do!' It is nearly time that the ears should judge of a musical performance. They are the only competant judges."
            -- Marie MacConnell, quoted by Mary Chappell Fisher, Etude, July 1909, p. 484, and reprinted in Ammer, Christine: Unsung, a History of Women in American Music. Greenwood Press, 1980.

      "The Glass Ceiling isn't actually made of glass... it's a very thick layer of men."
            --Ann Lewis, U.S. political consultant.

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