Gloria Steinem

"Feminism has never been about getting a job for one woman. It's about making life more fair for women everywhere. It's not about a piece of the existing pie; there are too many of us for that. It's about baking a new pie."

Early Life

  • March 25, 1934 born in Toledo, Ohio.
  • Father: Leo Steinem a traveling antiques dealer.
  • Mother: Ruth Nuneviller. Before Steinem was born Ruth, then aged 34, had a "nervous breakdown".
  • Paternal grandmother, Pauline Steinem, was chairwoman of the educational committee of the National Woman Suffrage Association, a delegate to the 1908 International Council of Women, and the first woman to be elected to the Toledo Board of Education,

  • 1944 parents split in divorce.

  • Steinem interpreted her mother's inability to hold on to a job as evidence of general hostility towards working women.

  • These perspectives convinced Steinem that women lacked Social and Political Equality.

  • 1952-1956 Attended Smith College

  • After her graduation in 1956 Steinem received a Chester Bowles post-graduate fellowship to spend two years studying and writing in India.

Journalism Career


  • 1962- Published an article in Esquire magazine regarding contraception and the way in which women are forced to choose between a career and marriage. Steinem later called this her first “serious assignment”.
  • 1963- Published an exposé in Show magazine, “A Bunny Tale” ,http://dlib.nyu.edu/undercover/sites/dlib.nyu.edu.undercover/files/documents/uploads/editors/Show-A%20Bunny%27s%20Tale-Part%20One-May%201963.pdf
  • 1969- Covered an abortion speak-out for New York magazine. She didn’t "begin my life as an active feminist" until that day.
  • 1972, she co-founded Ms. magazine.
  • "I realized as a journalist that there really was nothing for women to read that was controlled by women, and this caused me along with a number of other women to start Ms. magazine."
  • Its 300,000 test copies sold out nationwide in eight days.
  • 1972- Ms. made history when it published the names of women admitting to having had abortions when the procedure was still illegal in most of the United States
  • 1976- A cover story on battered women made Ms. the first national magazine to address the issue of domestic violence http://gender.stanford.edu/essay-contest
  • 2001- The magazine was sold to the Feminist Majority Foundation.

    Steinem remains on the masthead as one of six founding editors and serves on the advisory board


Political Activism

  • Steinem's involvement in presidential campaigns stretches back to the 1952 presidential election
  • 1969- Brought her to national fame as a feminist leader by article "Black Power, Women's Liberation" . http://nymag.com/news/politics/46802/
  • 1970- As “Feminist Leader” she campaigned for the Equal Rights Amendment testifying before the Senate Judiciary Committee
  • July 10, 1971- Steinem was one of over 300 women who founded the National Women's Political Caucus
  • Delivered an “Address to the Women of America”, Addressed the issues of sexism, misogyny, racism and social class.http://www.history.com/topics/holidays/womens-history-month/videos/gloria-steinem-addresses-the-nwpc
  • 1992- Steinem co-founded Choice USA, a non-profit organization that mobilizes and provides ongoing support to a younger generation that lobbies for reproductive choice.

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Awards and Honors

  • American Civil Liberties Union of Southern California's Bill of Rights Award
  • American Humanities Association's 2012 Humanist of the Year
  • Equality Now's International Human Rights Award
  • National Gay Rights Advocate Award
  • National Women's Hall of Fame inductee (1993)
  • New York Women's Foundation's Century Award (2014)
  • Society of Professional Journalists' Lifetime Achievement in Journalism Award
  • United Nations' Society of Writers Award
  • Presidential Medal of Freedom (2013)

List of Works

  • The Thousand Indias (1957)

  • The Beach Book (1963)

  • Outrageous Acts and Everyday Rebellions (1983)

  • Marilyn: Norma Jean (1986)

  • Revolution from Within (1992)

  • Moving beyond Words (1993)

  • Doing Sixty & Seventy (2006)

  • "Multiple Personalities: The Search for Deadly Memories." (1993) HBO

  • "Better Off Dead," (1993) Lifetime Network

"God may be in the details, but the goddess is in the question. Once we begin to ask them, there's no turning back."