From 2 – 4 pm
Judson Memorial Church
55 Washington Square South
New York, NY 10012
Some highlights of Ros’s activism, in word and deed:
1968, June: “Roz’s Page,” in New York Radical Women’s Notes From the First Year, edited by Shulamith Firestone. Already unearthing gems from radical herstory (and counter-herstory)
1968, August: Picketing for birth control rights at St. Patrick’s Cathedral.
1968, Halloween: Hexing Wall Street on the first action of W.I.T.C.H., (Women’s International Terrorist Conspiracy from Hell). Click here for a slideshow by photographer and singer Bev Grant, another WITCH activist. Ros is carrying the Women’s Liberation sign and wearing her radical herstory cape which reads: WITCHES The Original Women GUERILLAS
1969, Jan. 20: Marching with Shulamith Firestone in the “Feminism Lives” contingent at the Conter-Inaugural demonstration, protesting Nixon’s inauguration as President. “Give Back the Vote” signs were to draw attention to the new Women’s Liberation Movement’s realization that women winning the vote in 1920 in the U.S. hadn’t gotten us very far toward achieving equality.
1969, March 21: Redstockings Rap About Abortion. Ros takes part in a panel of women who dare to testify in public about their then criminal abortions. This is the new women’s liberation movement’s first “speakout.” Click here for Susan Brownmiller’s article about it in The Village Voice.
After having a child and getting active in New York City’s first women’s liberation group Radical Women in early 1968, Ros became a strong voice for demanding community childcare as an essential part of liberating women. She and other activists built Liberation Nursery to provide day care for themselves and to help spark a broader movement. As part of the new Women’s Liberation demand, men as well as women worked in their childcare center. Read Ros’s article about city-wide childcare organizing in the 1971 first edition of Woman’s World, a feminist newspaper put out by some Redstockings veterans.
1971: Ros becomes a professor in the American Studies Department at Old Westbury College on Long Island in New York. She teaches there for decades, becoming Chair of the department.
1976: First edition of America’s Working Women, edited by Rosalyn Baxandall, Linda Gordon, and Susan Reverby. A second edition, edited by Ros and Linda Gordon, was published in 1995.
1979 September, 6: Ros joins in the protest against the censorship by Gloria Steinem and Random House of several articles in the 1978 edition of the book Feminist Revolution by Redstockings and efforts at censoring even news of the censorship. For copies of the “abridged” Feminist Revolution, the censored articles and documents from the story of the censorship, go to Carol Hanisch’s website.
1987: Publication of Ros’s collection of selected writings, speeches, poems and journal entries of Elizabeth Gurley Flynn, legendary orator and organizer – first for the “Wobblies” of the I.W.W. (International Workers of the World) and then speaker, writer, and organizer for the Communist Party, through a five year period in jail and until her death.
1989, March: At a commemoration of the 20th anniversary of the Redstockings Abortion Speakout, Ros testifies again about her experience with abortion, before and after it was no longer “criminal.”
2000: Ros and Linda Gordon publish Dear Sisters, a collection of excerpts from the pamphlets, fliers, posters and other “agit prop” from the 1960s through the 1970s explosive rebirth years of the Women’s Liberation Movement.
2013, March 27: Ros participates in a “flash mob” action organized by National Women’s Liberation to press for the Morning After Pill to be available without a prescription for women of all ages.
2015, August 1: National Women’s Liberation sends a message of deep appreciation to a tribute gathering for Ros Baxandall held a couple of months before she died.
Here are some of the obituaries written about Rosalyn Baxandall, from The New York Times to the radical online journal Jacobin. Sheila Rowbotham, a longtime friend of Ros, writes in the UK’s Guardian. Not everything is accurate in them, but her spirit shines through.
The New York Times: Rosalyn Baxandall, Feminist Historian and Activist, Dies at 76
Jacobin: Remembering Rosalyn Baxandall