How To Start Writing
It’s not a personal problem; the personal is political
In early 1969, I began to write every day
I’d just been to my first “women’s liberation meeting,” organized by a close friend, held in my own living room.
Recently divorced from my first husband, a charismatic guy who’d been my professor at Barnard, the other women were also newly-divorced from high-status “radical,” left-leaning, privileged, pompous, white men.
During the evening — I don’t know if we all had that “ah-ha” experience at the same moment — but every woman there had that instant of insight:
”Wait a minute — my partner acted like I was stupid..that was never the problem -it was just that I was a woman.”
My blood ran cold, as five years of snide remarks, and feeling invisible flashed by. Believing him, I’d thought I’d had a personal problem.
The meeting over, upstairs in bed, I started writing a piece: “The small group in Women’s Liberation.”
Call it awakening if you will, I definitely woke up. The personal is political.
Life changed overnight
Age 25, a part-time graduate student in sociology, I’d spent the past two years mainly taking care of my babies.
Call it awakening and it was, I woke up and my life changed, overnight.
I never stopped writing. A year and several publications later,
”Male Supremacy,” my analysis of our system hit the streets and was read by women across the country.
Fifty-three years later, the system’s the same
My life may have changed, but little else did. Trump’s fascist movement, that misogynist backlash — that war against women is on.
Everyone’s saying, “America’s having a nervous breakdown” as if it’s a psychological problem we’re facing. It’s not.
The personal is political.
Get rid of self-blame and I promise — you’ll start writing.
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