Friday, October 1, 2010

Thank you Kansas City!

We had an incredible day in Kansas City, Missouri with the wonderful women of the UMKC Women's Center and the Starr Symposium. It started with a workshop designed to foster intergenerational dialogue among women about work/life issues. We had all sorts of interesting insights, including the fact that power remains a problematic word for a lot of women. (More reason to read Gloria's new book!)

Our evening panel was filled with rich images, good humor, and deep insights (if we do say so ourselves). Actually, we don't have to say it, because so many other people have been. Here's a selection of the blog posts that have been written by diverse women in reaction to our conversation in Kansas City:

I was intellectually blissed out for two hours...After the talk, I went over to say hello to Gloria, who spoke at BlogHer '10, and mentioned I sure wish I'd had Gloria Feldt to talk to when I was 15.

'I know,' she said. 'I wish I had Gloria Feldt when I was 15.'

And therein lies the rub. We have to grow into our power. And we can't do that if we're so exhausted from balancing jobs and family that we have no time left for what's in our heads.

-Rita Arens, BlogHer

It was more than perfect. My time in the auditorium reminded me that I had been raised by a woman – my mother – who is a raging feminist, and that I had been deeply molded by two women – my grandmothers – who would have never admitted to being feminists in any form. These women gave me their best and let me catch glimpses of their worst. What shakes me to my core is that I never think about being a feminist myself, because I really don’t have to very much. It is ingrained in me to believe that women can do anything and be anything.

-S. Sloane Simmons, UMKC Women's Center Board Member
UMKC Women's Center blog

Thank you all for not being afraid to advocate for a world where men and women can enjoy 'genuine equality, educated choice, and live intentionally with authenticity.' Thank you for not being afraid to claim the “f-word” and for setting an example for:
-how to redefine power structures in an effort to correct imbalances
-how to understand our worth as women-individuals and negotiate accordingly
-how to assert our wants and needs without making unhealthy compromises
-how to approach partnership-relationships and work-life balance
-how to imagine better for our sons and daughters
-how to be courageous and when faltering or failing, do so GREATLY
and forgive ourselves
and try again tomorrow–
wiser, but also with as much passion, fervor, and optimism as before.

-Chiazotam Ekekezie, to live (def)

2 comments:

Brenda said...

Here's another great reaction from a UMKC student: http://info.umkc.edu/womenc/2010/10/01/starr-symposium-from-a-young-feminist%E2%80%99s-point-of-view/

Thank you again for coming to Kansas City and sharing your stories with us. It is a privilege to know all of you.

Greg said...

nice place