Barbara Julian will be at Caffe Misto, 2865 Foul Bay Rd., on Dec. 2.

READERS CORNER: Saanich author delves into the lives of notable women

Women Who Made the World offers snapshots into the lives of over 50 accomplished women from the past

In Women Who Made the World, Saanich writer Barbara Julian provides snapshots of the lives and careers of over 50 accomplished women from the past, who worked in civil rights, education, literature, art, theology and the sciences, women who started the movements and compiled the knowledge that created the world we know.

The field of women’s studies analyzes the andro-centrism that has erected barriers against women at many junctures in history, but Julian asks whether too much focus on what women have been prevented from doing leaves young people ignorant of what they have done. Too many assume that in past eras women were silent, under-educated and excluded. In fact many reached levels of skill and scholarship unheard of among today’s students. They inspired their contemporaries and inspire ourselves with writings, paintings and horticulture, and steered governments and politicians via associations, committees, salons, institutes and myriad other channels of influence.

The movements that most define contemporary thinking – the women’s, civil rights, and environmental movements – were triggered by the work and books of particular women (Betty Friedan, Rosa Parks and Rachel Carson). Modern nursing and hospital administration, social work and housing, birth control clinics, prisoners’ rights, animal rights and the peace movement were created by reformers such as Florence Nightingale, Octavia Hill, Elizabeth Fry, Frances Power Cobbe, Bertha van Suttner and Wangari Maathai.

Others unravelled the structure of DNA (Rosalind Franklin), discovered nuclear fusion (Lise Meitner), invented religious sects (Mary Baker Eddy, Deguchi Nao, Julian of Norwich and many more). Without women of determination and knowledge we would not have Britain’s National Trust or Kew Gardens, the Christian Science Monitor, Planned Parenthood, the Nobel Peace Prize, half of world literature, or the poem on the Statue of Liberty.

Why do so many girls remain ignorant of the achievements of their foremothers? Would we not do more to inspire female students by acquainting them with these world-makers than by focusing on past inequities? Women Who Made the World (82 pages, illustrated and indexed) celebrates and informs, and makes a small, accessible and readable contribution to Women’s History.

Meet the author and view copies of the book, published by Ninshu Press (www.overleafbooks.blogspot.ca), on Dec. 2 at Caffe Misto, 2865 Foul Bay Rd. The book can be found in local shops or ordered through overleaf2011@hotmail.com.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

 

Women Who Made the World can be found in local shops or ordered through overleaf2011@hotmail.com.

Just Posted

Council approve temporary storage to extend life of Oak Bay Fire Hall

It’s cute, it’s iconic, but the picturesque Oak Bay Fire Hall is… Continue reading

Saanich dog walkers react to potential review of bylaws allowing off-leash dogs on beaches

Focus should have remained on migratory birds, not on dog behaviour, says Cadboro Bay dog walker

No dogs allowed off-leash at Luxton Fairgrounds in Langford

New sign placed by Metchosin Farmers Institute on Wednesday, Feb. 19

Scarlet fever reported at Victoria elementary school

Parents advised to look for symptoms of ‘strawberry tongue’ and rash

Motion for Greater Victoria fare-free youth transit defeated

Victoria Regional Transit Commision votes tied 4-4

VIDEO: Feds warned agricultural sector near ‘tipping point’ due to blockades

Canadian Federation of Agriculture points to lack of propane and feed due to Coastal GasLink dispute

B.C. terminates contract with hospice society refusing assisted death

Delta Hospice Society loses hospital service fund of $1.5 million

Child in hospital following fatal crash that killed father, sibling on B.C. highway

The single vehicle crash occured near Kamloops on Highway 5A

‘Die!’: Vernon councillor mailed death threat

Three months later, city official Coun. Dalvir Nahal said she’s more angry than anything

Hidden message connects Castlegar homeowners decades apart

The Rodgers family was surprised when a message fell out of the walls as they were renovating

Two B.C. men plead guilty to bus-terminal assault of man with autism in Ontario

Parmvir Chahil and Jaspaul Uppal due to be sentenced in June for aggravated assault

B.C. Liberals call for assistance on soaring strata insurance rates

NDP’s Carole James says problem is across the country

‘Intemperate, insulting’: B.C. teacher reprimanded for online comments about religion

John William Yetman made the comments in response to a Facebook invitation to Open Mosque Day B.C.

Most Read