Bitches, Bimbos, and Ballbreakers: The Guerrilla Girls' by Guerrilla Girls

By Guerrilla Girls

No matter what lifestyles a lady leads, from biker chick to society lady, there's a stereotype she'll need to stay down. The Guerrilla Girls, infamous for his or her outrageous tackle women's matters, now take on the maze of stereotypes that persist with ladies from cradle to grave. With subversive use of information-and nice visuals-they discover the heritage and importance of stereotypes like outdated Maid, Trophy spouse, and Prostitute with a middle of Gold. They tag the pinnacle forms, learn sexual slurs, clarify the evolution of butches and femmes, and delve into the lives of genuine and fictional girls who've turn into stereotypes, from Aunt Jemima to Tokyo Rose to June Cleaver. The Guerrilla Girls' newest attack on injustice in the direction of girls will make humans chortle, lead them to mad, and perhaps even cause them to swap their minds.

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Additional resources for Bitches, Bimbos, and Ballbreakers: The Guerrilla Girls' Illustrated Guide to Female Stereotypes

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Had the media called us “girdle-burners,” nearly every woman in the country would have rushed to join us. —Carol Hanisch (1998), member of New York Radical Women and participant in the 1968 Miss America Pageant protest (p. 199) T he Miss America Pageant was the first or second most popular television event for eight of ten years in the 1960s (Watson and Martin, 2004). In many families, mine included, watching it was an annual ritual, and presidential candidate Richard Nixon commented in 1968 that it was the only program that his daughters Tricia and Julie had been allowed to stay up late to watch (Cohen, 1988).

By 1971, after Friedan had left NOW’s leadership, the organization would acknowledge lesbian oppression as a “legitimate concern of feminism” and would pass a series of resolutions affirming that “a woman’s right to her own person includes the right to define and express her own sexuality” (Carabillo, Meuli, and Csida, 1993, p. 223). Some radical groups were wary of the lesbian issue as well, but not for public relations reasons; for example, some radical feminists viewed lesbianism as a sexual rather than political issue and were concerned with the ways that butchfemme lesbian relationships mimicked patriarchal heterosexuality (Echols, 1989).

The Miss America Pageant protest occurred less than two weeks after the tumultuous 1968 Democratic National Convention in Chicago, and, given that many members of NYRW had leftist movement experience, Van Gelder’s analogy to the burnings of draft cards and flags was not out of place. On the other hand, the comparison did not bode well for a nascent movement that had little credibility with either the Left or with mass media, both of which viewed feminist claims with derision in contrast to the matrix of national and international political issues and events gripping the nation in late 1968.

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