Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Gloria: In Her Own Words (Review)

Last Monday on HBO Gloria: In Her Own Words, a documentary about Gloria Steinem's leading the way in feminism.  Luckily Gloria narrated the documentary.  This is something we don't often receive in documentaries, as many subjects of documentaries are dead.

We go through Steinem's rise, being in the spotlight, breaking the mold of what a feminist looks like.  Her journey begins with her undercover work as a Playboy Bunny.  It's not just men trying to humiliate and ridicule women, but women also fought against the advancement of women.  She's referred to a bitch by other women because "she's aggressive".  Women were angered that she disrupted the family dynamics.  She breaks a mold.  We see the development of her magazine Ms., which is so strongly opposed by men, especially newscasters and President Nixon.

The personal side of Steinem's life is also noted, from her battle with breast cancer to dealing with the deaths of her parents.  Even her issues with self-esteem is highlighted, as it was a huge part of her life.  Her marriage is discussed, as well as her husband's death so soon after marriage.

Check this documentary out if you can because it's fantastic.  I wish it were tow hours long, but it's a nice introduction to the life of Gloria Steinem.  It doesn't stay too long on one aspect of her career or personal life.  For those of us who didn't grow up in the 60s and 70s this is a necessity.  For those who aren't feminist, it will make you realize how much you have because of the women's liberation movement and the women's suffrage movement that predated it.  Watching this is incredible, though, as we quickly see how far we've come in equality, but it makes me so upset that we're still not there.  As Steinem points out, we need to rise above racism and sexism at the same time for feminism to work.  But the injustice prevails through ignorance and hatred.

Also...there's a point at the end where Glenn Beck is ranting about Gloria Steinem, whom he refers to as a "cranky feminist", being stuck in the 60s because now we're clear-headed and we can see things so much better now that there are no drugs to be taking.  Just watch it for that because if you didn't want to punch him in the face before (which every person should want to), you would want to after that.

Gloria Steinem on Stephen Colbert promoting the documentary...

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