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2017 was our year, according to numerous late December assessments by writers who lean toward big pronouncements. Even though (or maybe because) a woman didn’t control the White House, we ended up controlling the zeitgeist.
Even though (or maybe because) a woman didn’t control the White House, we ended up controlling the zeitgeist.
Women, especially women our age, fired up imaginations and outrage cells and who knows how many future political campaigns at the Women’s March in January. Then came #Metoo and the long-pent-up anguish and fury of women of all generations were unleashed and the world hasn’t been the same.
Oh, and NextTribe was born last February, on the scene to bear witness and give voice (or so we like to think) to women’s new power.
How can 2018 possibly top such an incredible stretch of female relevance? Well, we’ve gotten off to a stellar start.
A Good Start for Women in 2018
The year is only a few weeks old and we’ve already seen the all-black gowns, which we now understand will be auctioned off to benefit the Time’s Up Legal Defense Fund, at the Golden Globes. We heard Oprah’s rousing speech. We’re not sure she should be president, but that woman knows how to get the arm hairs tingling, does she not?
And then what about Dianne Feinstein releasing the interview with the firm that put together the dossier on Trump’s Russia activity? Pretty kickass.
We love Dianne Feinstein’s no-explanation-required expression of female prerogative.
Plus, she’s given us another phrase to use as a rallying cry, a matter-of-fact update to Nike’s famous get-off-your-butt slogan. “I just decided to do it,” Feinstein told a reporter (shoulder-shrug implied). We love this no-explanation-required expression of female prerogative.
This weekend, we have the Screen Actors Guild Awards, for which all presenters will be women. See our story on the force behind that move. And we have the one-year anniversary of the Women’s March, which will have women gathering in cities throughout the country once again, this time with the theme “Power to the Polls.” Right on, we say!
Here’s what else to look for in the year ahead.
Politics for Women in 2018
Women won big in the 2017 election for the Virginia House of Delegates, claiming 11 of the 14 seats that the Democrats gained. All early signs show that we can expect more women than ever celebrating on election night 2018. Emily’s List, which works to get pro-choice Democratic women elected, has heard from more than 25,000 women who are interested in running. Compare that figure to 900 in the 2015-16 election cycle.
We’re also happy that a big “Attention Must Be Paid” notice has been raised by women of color after the 2017 elections in Virginia and Alabama.
Stephanie Schriock, president of Emily’s List, told the news site Vox, “We’ve never seen anything like this,” adding, “It is a truly transformational moment.”
This year we should also see potential presidential candidates emerge, and some of the big names rising are women: Kirsten Gillibrand and Kamala Harris. We’ll be covering these women in NextTribe in the future.
We’re also happy and relieved that a big “Attention Must Be Paid” notice has been raised by women of color after the 2017 elections in Virginia and Alabama. They are a key contingent, and we look forward to watching them use their power.
Books for Women in 2018
Women writers will make themselves heard, with a bold line up of novels and non-fiction scheduled for publication. We’re proud to report that a couple are authored by NextTribe writers.
Brave by Rose McGowan (Harper Collins, January 30). McGowan has already lived up to the title by fiercely taking on Harvey Weinstein and the Hollywood machine that protected and enabled him. Her book should get readers raising fists in the air. Here’s what the publisher says: “Hollywood expected Rose to be silent and cooperative and to stay the path. Instead, she rebelled and asserted her true identity and voice. She reemerged unscripted, courageous, victorious, angry, smart, fierce, unapologetic, controversial, and real as f*ck.”
Voices in the Air: Poems for Listeners by Naomi Shahib Nye (Harper Collins, February 13). Naomi Shihab Nye is an acclaimed poet, essayist, and novelist who grew up in Palestine and Ferguson, Missouri (talk about relevance). “She has devoted her life to literature, world peace, education and activism,” says NextTribe writer and fan, Marion Winik. “She’s also the coolest person I’ve ever met.” Voices in the Air is a collection of almost 100 original poems that offer words of encouragement, solace, and hope.
The Female Persuasion by Meg Wolitzer (Riverhead Books, April 3). Best-selling novelist Meg Wolitzer tells the story of a young woman and her mentor, a dazzling 63-year-old feminist who sounds like she’d read NextTribe. Publisher’s Weekly calls it “ambitious and satisfying. … This insightful and resonant novel explores what it is to both embrace womanhood and suffer because of it.”
What Would Virginia Woolf Do? And Other Questions I Ask Myself as I Attempt to Age Without Apology by Nina Lorez Collins (Grand Central Life & Style, April 10). NextTribe was up and running long before we learned about the cool Facebook group, “What Would Virginia Woolf Do?” All we can say is, “Great minds….” If you love NextTribe, you’re going to adore this mix of memoir, practical advice, and compassionate support. Bonus: you can take this book—unlike NextTribe—into the bathtub with you.
Another Side of Paradise: A Novel by Sally Koslow (Harper, May 29). NextTribe author and best-selling novelist Sally Koslow brings to life the shocking affair of F. Scott Fitzgerald and his long-time lover Sheila Graham. The story has it all—romance, celebrity, and Gatsby-esque self-recreation in 1930s Hollywood.
Daughter of a Daughter of a Queen by Sarah Bird (St. Martins Press, September 4). Sarah Bird spins a tale of adventure and risk-taking as she follows Cathy Williams, a former slave who, at the end of the Civil War, disguised herself as a man and joined the Buffalo Soldiers unit of the U.S. Calvary.
Meg Wolitzer tells the story of a young woman and her mentor, a dazzling 63-year-old feminist who sounds like she’d read NextTribe.
The Baltimore Book of the Dead by Marion Winik (Counterpoint Publishing, TBD). Our own Marion Winik is coming out with a sequel to her 2008 The Glen Rock Book of the Dead, and, like the first book, the Baltimore version will contain brief portraits of people Marion has crossed paths with who have died. If you’ve read Marion’s stories here, you know she’s witty, frank, and fearless. We’d all be lucky to be memorialized by such a gifted writer.
Movies for Women in 2018
Women showed lots of muscle at movie theaters in 2017, with Wonder Woman the third highest grossing film of the year and the number one movie, Star Wars: The Last Jedi, centered on a female character, Rey. Here are movies we’re looking forward to seeing this year.
Where’d You Go Bernadette? May 11. Cate Blanchett stars as the title character in the film version of the beloved book of the same name by Maria Semple.
Oceans 8, June 8. We’re not sure how we feel about this trend toward “gender-flipping” films, remaking successful movies with female stars. Can’t we get fresh material? But hey, we dig Sandra Bullock, and this caper movie, which also stars Cate Blanchett, Anne Hathaway, Helena Bonham Carter and features a cameo by the fashion queen herself, Anna Wintour, looks like a romp.
Mama Mia: Here We Go Again, July 20. Wait, could there be Abba songs that didn’t make it into the original? We’ll see. Probably worth it just to see Meryl goofing off again in those overalls with two of Hollywood’s best-aging leading men, Pierce Brosnan and Colin Firth.
On the Basis of Sex, Fall 2018. Wow! The long-awaited Ruth Bader Ginsburg bio-pic is in production, scheduled to be released this year. Felicity Jones stars in the story of RBG’s early career. Plus, a documentary about RBG, produced by Betsy West, is being shown at Sundance this year. We wonder if it’s possible to love the Supreme Court Justice—one of NextTribe’s 2017 Women of the Year—more than we already do.