I am an avid reader of women in history. Eleanor Roosevelt with all of her contributions and her flaws is one of my role models. I was delighted to discover two different authors with very different perspectives about her.
I’ve especially enjoyed all three books written by Blanche Wiesen Cook about her life. Ms. Cook presented a highly favorable accounting of Eleanor. Then I came across The Firebrand and the First Lady by Patricia Bell-Scott which introduced another portrait of Eleanor in a less favorable light with her interactions with Pauli Murray. As I read, I pondered the time frame and the restrictions placed on women, people of color and interference in their sexual preferences. Eleanor and Pauli lived in difficult times for women. Women have gained momentum but sadly, there are still many unresolved issues when it comes to race, equality, and humanity itself. Unfortunately, some people believe they are entitled to judge others.
What woman in history do you admire? Are there books about your choice you would recommend reading?
Regrettably, I feel our country has entered dark times with this present leadership. It saddens me immensely to see all the gains women have made in history tossed to the curb with a flick of a pen, coupled with the blatant male arrogance. It frightens me to think of a return to persecution based on race, religion or culture.
With that said, I feel Eleanor’s notable quotes apply now more than ever. Please don’t forget —
No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.
You must do the things you think you cannot do.
Thank you for joining me for a cup of coffee this overcast Sunday afternoon in Jersey.