Significant Contemporary American Feminists: A Biographical Sourcebook

By Jennifer Scanlon | Go to book overview

JO FREEMAN
(1945-)

Jennifer Scanlon

Jo Freeman, activist, political scientist, writer, and lawyer, was born in Atlanta, Georgia, and raised in Los Angeles, California. Her mother, Helen Mitchell Freeman, hailed from Marion County, Alabama, where both of her parents had occasionally served as local elected officials. She moved to California shortly after Jo's birth and taught junior high school until her death in 1973.

Freeman attended Birmingham Junior and Senior High in the San Fernando Valley and graduated from Granada Hills High School. in 1961. She felt her four years at the University of California at Berkeley, where she received her B.A. with honors in political science in 1965, were her "personal liberation" from the narrow constraints imposed on girls during her childhood. At Berkeley she could live on her own and make her own decisions.

One of those decisions was to become deeply involved in the student political groups and larger social movements that were prevalent at Berkeley in the 1960s. She was active in the Young Democrats and SLATE, a campus political party, lobbying to remove the campus ban on controversial speakers and to promote educational reform, writing for the SLATE Supplement, which evaluated teachers and courses from a student perspective, and working in local "fair housing" campaigns. In 1963-1964, Freeman immersed herself in the Bay Area civil rights movement, organizing and participating in demonstrations demanding that local employers hire more African Americans. She was arrested in two of those and spent six weeks on trial, garnering one acquittal and one conviction. The trials interfered with her plans to go to Mississippi for Freedom Summer but ended in time for her to hitchhike to the Democratic Convention in Atlantic City to join the vigil of the Mississippi Freedom Democratic Party. On her return, the student political groups were informed that they could no longer pass out literature on the edge of campus, at the traditional locale for political activity that was forbidden on the campus itself. This rule change prompted the Berkeley Free Speech Movement (FSM), whose massive sit-ins and student strikes shook the political

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Significant Contemporary American Feminists: A Biographical Sourcebook
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Editorial Board ii
  • Title Page iii
  • Copyright Acknowledgments v
  • Contents vii
  • Preface xi
  • Introduction xiii
  • Bella Abzug (1920-1998) 1
  • Paula Gunn Allen (1939-) 8
  • Gloria AnzaldÚa (1942-) 14
  • Frances Beale (1940-) 22
  • Rita Mae Brown (1944-) 28
  • Charlotte Bunch (1944-) 36
  • Pat Califia (1954-) 44
  • Judy Chicago (1939-) 51
  • Shirley Chisholm (1924-) 55
  • Esther Ngan-Ling Chow (1943-) 60
  • Pearl Cleage (1948-) 66
  • Kate Clinton (1945- ) 73
  • Mary Daly (1928- ) 79
  • Angela Davis (1944-) 86
  • Shulamith Firestone (1945-) 98
  • Jo Freeman (1945-) 104
  • Betty Friedan (1921-) 111
  • Ruth Bader Ginsburg (1933-) 118
  • Bell Hooks (1952- ) 125
  • Dolores Huerta (1930-) 133
  • June Jordan (1936-) 138
  • Evelyn Fox Keller (1936-) 145
  • Florynce Kennedy (1916-) 150
  • Audre Lorde (1934-1992) 156
  • Catharine Mackinnon (1946-) 163
  • Olga Madar (1915-1996) 174
  • Wilma Mankiller (1945-) 181
  • Del Martin (1921-) 188
  • Kate Millett (1934- ) 194
  • CherrÍe Moraga (1952- ) 201
  • Robin Morgan (1941-) 206
  • Pauli Murray (1910-1985) 213
  • Eleanor Holmes Norton (1937-) 218
  • Alice Paul (1885-1977) 223
  • Anna Quindlen (1952-) 231
  • Adrienne Rich (1929-) 238
  • Faith Ringgold (1930-) 245
  • Rosemary Ruether (1936-) 251
  • Joanna Russ (1937-) 257
  • Patricia Schroeder (1940-) 264
  • Eleanor Smeal (1939-) 271
  • Barbara Smith (1946-) 279
  • Gloria Steinem (1934-) 283
  • Margo St. James (1937-) 290
  • Alice Walker (1944- ) 297
  • Rebecca Walker (1969-) 305
  • Michele Wallace (1952-) 311
  • Sarah Weddington (1945-) 317
  • Ellen Willis (1941-) 327
  • Selected Bibliography 335
  • Index 341
  • About the Editor and Contributors 355
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