One of the rewards of blogging is the opportunity to connect with exemplary people. I first crossed virtual paths with Smith College professor Lois Dubin last February when I came across a letter of protest she’d written to the upper management of MSNBC. Professor Dubin was responding to David Shuster’s reference to Chelsea Clinton’s campaigning for her mother Senator Hillary Clinton as being “pimped out in some weird sort of way.” Dubin’s letter drew hundreds of visitors to Katalusis from around the world.
It was fitting to receive an email this morning from Dubin linking to Susan Milligan’s article in the Boston Globe titled “Activists expect Clinton to propel women's rights.” The blurb beneath the headline reads: “SPREADING OPTIMISM Clinton's speech at a 1995 UN conference on the status of women became an inspiration to activists around the world.”
“But Clinton's ascension to be the nation's top diplomat also gives new hope to supporters of international women's rights, who see Clinton as one of the world's leading figures in the fight to improve education, safety, and economic opportunity for women and girls.
"This is a new opportunity. We're very optimistic," said Daphne Jayasinghe, Amnesty International's acting advocacy director for Europe/Central Asia and violence against women. The human rights group is pushing for ratification of a UN document calling for an end to gender discrimination, as well as programs to counter violence against women and girls.” (See Sen. Clinton’s letter to the United Nations a few weeks ago in which she speaks out against the public execution of a 13-year-old Somali girl who had been brutally raped.)
Many thanks this morning to Professor Dubin, who teaches history, religion, and Jewish studies at Smith College, for calling Milligan's article to our attention.