Author: Ellen Snortland

Author showcases the achievements of Pasadena dancing legend Jeanne Devereaux Perkins

If you’re a history geek as I am, don’t miss Pasadena author Kathleen Menzie Lesko reading and signing her new book “Jeanne Devereaux, Prima Ballerina of Vaudeville and Broadway: She Ran Between the Raindrops” at Vroman’s on Monday, Sept. 11. This biography spans the early 20th century, a period in American history that influenced many of us, yet most know little about. And bets are most of us have never even heard of Jeanne Deveraux Perkins, a woman who definitely had moxie. What happens when the world goes from a form of art that is comfortable and familiar to...

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Let’s make Aug. 26 — the anniversary of the 19th Amendment — a national holiday

Ninety-seven years ago this month, the 19th Amendment to the US Constitution — also known as the Susan B. Anthony Amendment — was ratified. Women finally won the vote on Aug 26, 1920, after a highly personal, contentious and nonviolent movement to enfranchise one half of our population. It was an inspiring victory, though incomplete insofar as our sisters of color were still denied the vote in some areas up until the 1960s, or in other areas denied the convenience and safety of some of their “pinker” sisters. And when you think of the women of any color who...

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Failure is certain when basing rights on anything other than being human

I have heard so many times, from both feminist and non-feminist women and men, “Women should have gotten behind [insert name of candidate/issue/cause here],” or “I was so disappointed that a woman would say something like that. I expected better from a woman.” Why? Why do we expect better from women? And what planet do people live on that they unconsciously think all women would be all anything or believe the same things? Welcome to Planet Implausible! As a “baby” feminist in my early days, I hunted for examples in which women were better than men or excelled in heretofore...

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Real Wonder Women are rarely used to teach ‘Wonder Woman’ courses on self-defense

Sitting next to me at a recent luncheon for the United Nations Association was a fantastic seatmate, “Emma Empowerment” (not her real name), who is a pillar of several communities that empower women and girls. She asked what I do, and I said, “I am an empowerment self-defense advocate, and have written a book about it which is now a movie.” Winking, I said, “I am a Wonder Woman!” She brightened and said, “We just had a self-defense class for my group!” “Terrific,” I said. “Who taught it?” “Oh, this really nice guy, Marty Martial Arts!” (also not his...

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Margaret Atwood’s ‘Handmaid’s Tale’ depicts a dystopian world that’s all too real

The Handmaid’s Tale,” based on author (and badass) Margaret Atwood’s brilliant dystopian novel of the same name, is officially the feel-bad hit of the new Hulu season. It should be required viewing for … well, everyone, especially people who are not natural dot-connectors. The conception, birth and delivery of a dictatorship parallels a society’s relationship with women and reproduction. This is not theory; it is practice all over the radical right-wing world. Since the advent of the written word, there has been a war on women. If you think that statement is hyperbole, read Riane Eisler’s “The Chalice and...

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Upcoming Events

7:00 pm Vroman’s Book Signing Event at A... @ All Saints Church
Vroman’s Book Signing Event at A... @ All Saints Church
Oct 16 @ 7:00 pm
Pulitzer Prize-winning author Ron Chernow presents and signs “Grant,” a sweeping and dramatic portrait of one of the nation’s most compelling and generals and presidents, starting at 7 p.m. This is a ticketed event. Tickets[...]
7:30 pm Andrea Wulf Discusses Environmen... @ Caltech's Baxter Lecture Hall
Andrea Wulf Discusses Environmen... @ Caltech's Baxter Lecture Hall
Oct 16 @ 7:30 pm
Best-selling author Andrea Wulf discusses the life of explorer, scientist and early environmentalist Alexander von Humboldt, the subject of her latest book, “The Invention of Nature” at 7:30 p.m. in Caltech’s Baxter Lecture Hall, exploring[...]
2:00 pm Pasadena Senior Center Masters S... @ Pasadena Senior Center
Pasadena Senior Center Masters S... @ Pasadena Senior Center
Oct 17 @ 2:00 pm – 4:00 pm
The Center’s Masters Series discussion program explores topics ranging from national politics to arts and culture, from 2 to 4 p.m. Tuesdays through Nov. 14. Tuesday’s topic is the history of chocolate. Cost is $15[...]
3:30 pm LEGO Activity at Lamanda Park Li... @ Pasadena Public Library, Lamanda Park Branch
LEGO Activity at Lamanda Park Li... @ Pasadena Public Library, Lamanda Park Branch
Oct 17 @ 3:30 pm
The library celebrates the Young Readers League book, “The Key to Extraordinary” by building a LEGO cemetery, inspired by the book’s Blackbird Hollow Graveyard, at 3:30 p.m.
7:00 pm Book Signing at Vroman’s @ Vroman's Bookstore
Book Signing at Vroman’s @ Vroman's Bookstore
Oct 17 @ 7:00 pm
Will Kostakis, in discussion with John Corey Whaley discusses and signs “The Sidekicks” at 7 p.m.

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