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Gloria Steinem

My sister is currently doing research on feminism at school and working on a monologue on Gloria Steinem. She has just read the interview with Gloria Steinem posted at the site dated 4/3/95. She finds this very interesting and she seeks your help in finding more information on Gloria Steinem. Any information would be greatly appreciated. We look forward to hearing from you. —Many thanks, Lynette & Patricia

Gloria was born in 1934 in Toledo, Ohio. She spent the first 10 years of her life dividing her time between Clark Lake, Michigan, where her father ran a summer resort, and then the other six months travelling with her family—her mother Ruth, her father Leo and her sister Sue— in a trailer around the United States. Her father was an itinerant antique dealer. She did not attend school full time until the 5th grade. At this point, she was living with her mother, who was sick. She writes about this experience with her mother in Ruth's Song (in Outrageous Acts and Everyday Rebellions). Her sister was at college and her father still travelling around the country. Gloria then spent her senior year in Washington, DC living with her sister and then went to Smith College. She was primarily able to attend Smith with the money her mother got from selling their home in Ohio. She spent her junior year in Geneva, Switzerland and the following summer at Oxford. She returned to Smith in her senior year and got engaged. She broke the engagement when she accepted the Chester Bowles Fellowship to go to India and study for a year. She liked it so much that she spent two years there traveling the country. She describes this experiences as the one that divides her life into 'before and after.'

When she returned to the United States she began her life as a freelance journalists, writing for Glamour, Vogue, Show, Look, Ladies Home Journal. After being frustrated by only being assigned "fluff pieces," she helped to found New York Magazine and wrote a column "The City Politic". This was the first time she could write and publish serious political pieces. At this time - approx. 1968 - she also began to get involved in political campaigns and also social justice movements - the farm workers, Civil Rights and then in 1969 began to be actively involved in the women's movement after attending a 1969 speakout where women told their stories about having illegal abortions. She began to travel the country - always with black women speaking about feminism and in 1972 co-founded Ms. Magazine. She then spent the next 15 years totally consumed by the magazine and supporting it. She also co-founded the Ms. Foundation for Women, the first public fund for women and girls. This set her on a path of really building lasting foundations and organizations committed to many of the things she had spent the last two decades writing about. Much of this she continues to do today. She is also the President of Voters for Choice and the author of numerous books and articles. I hope that helps. Good luck!


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