This documentary, now available on Netflix, is an inspiring look at the brilliant, outrageous women who spearheaded the 1960s women’s movement. It’s celebratory in tone, capturing the exhilaration felt by a generation of women who challenged and shed age-old gender role limitations in a surge of rebellious energy. The massive amounts of yummy period footage and photographs drop you into their struggles, battles, and victories alike; plus, the soundtrack is infectious. This rousing summation of the American women’s liberation movement is a red-carpet procession of the shit-kicking dames we owe so much to, including:

  • Mary Jean Collins, who can’t be convinced that you can’t change the world because she saw it happen to Muriel Fox, one of the founders of the National Organization of Women (NOW), the first civil rights organization to focus on women’s rights;
  • the women who rallied for abortion rights: from Ellen Willis, who spoke of the double message in the 1960s (“… that first of all sex was okay now, but if we were pregnant it was our problem. The HORROR—the fear of pregnancy—loomed over anything one did”), to Judith Arcana, one of the brave women who worked in JANE, the underground abortion service in Chicago;
  • Fran Beal, who fought for liberation and freedom on the racial side and then along with other black women founded the SNCC Black Women’s Liberation Committee in 1968;
  • Linda Burnham, one of the founders of Black Sisters United, who perceived that black women had a different perspective on women’s places in the world than what they were hearing from the white majority in the women’s movement;

and last but not least, Rita Mae Brown, who was the youngest woman to join NOW and called them on the carpet about class, race, and then lesbianism: “I said, ‘You are treating women the way men treat you. And those women are lesbians.’”

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