Women Strike for Peace
Traditional Motherhood and Radical Politics in the 1960s
Women Strike for Peace began on November 1, 1961, when thousands of white, middle-class women walked out of their kitchens and off their jobs in a one-day protest against Soviet and American nuclear policies. The protest led to a national organization of women who fought against nuclear arms and U.S. intervention in Vietnam. While maintaining traditional maternal and feminine roles, members of WSP effectively challenged national policies—defeating a proposal for a NATO nuclear fleet, withstanding an investigation by the House Committee on Un-American Activities, and sending one of its leaders to Congress as a peace candidate.
As a study of a dissident group grounded in prescribed female culture, and the struggle of its members to avoid being trapped within that culture, this book adds a crucial new dimension to women's studies. In addition, this account of WSP's success as a grass roots, nonhierarchical movement will be of great interest to historians, political scientists, and anyone interested in peace studies or conflict resolution.
"Swerdlow has re-created a unique piece of American political history, a chapter of the international peace movement, and an origin of the modern feminist movement. No historian, activist, or self-respecting woman should be without Women Strike for Peace. It shows not only how one group of women created change, but also how they inevitably changed themselves."—Gloria Steinem
1. "Raising a Hue and Cry"
2. Prelude to a Peace Strike
3. Who Are These Women?
4. Organizing a "Nonorganization"
5. Ladies' Day at the Capitol
6. A Not-so-funny Thing Happened on the Way to Disarmament
7. "The Women's Vote Is the Peace Vote"
8. Not Our Sons, Not Your Sons, Not Their Sons: Hell, No, We Won't Let Them Go!
9. We Have Met the Enemy—and They Are Our Sisters!