Tag Archives: Aretha Franklin

Sisters Are Doin’ It for Themselves

10 May

Way back in 1985 Annie Lennox and Aretha Franklin recorded Sisters Are Doin’ It for Themselves

Twenty-nine years later, Ilene Cooper has written A Woman in the House (and Senate): How Women Came to the United States Congress, Broke Down Barriers , and Changed The Country.


Not as danceable as Annie & Aretha’s tribute,this middle school appropriate book is an encyclopedia of sorts of the history of women in politics as it pertains to the U.S. Congress. The book is divided into chronological sections, beginning with the women’s suffrage movement and ending with the results of the 2012 election.

Featured women include Hattie Caraway (the first woman elected to the Senate), Patsy Mink (the first woman of color to serve in Congress), Shirley Chisholm (the first African-American woman in Congress), and present-day powerhouses like Nancy Pelosi and Hillary Clinton. 

The text is accompanied by photos of every woman mentioned, as well as drawings that highlight certain topics. The author includes an appendix with additional info about the three branches of government, women and suffrage, politics and politicians, democrats and republicans, how a bill is passed, congressional committees, the cabinet, the women’s movement, the Equal Rights Amendment and impeachment. There is also a complete list of women in Congress, with each name listed alphabetically; endnotes; a bibliography; an acknowledgments page; and an index.

This is an excellent book for people researching famous congresswomen and/or 20th century US politics.



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