Learning List: Women's History Month

March is Women's History Month! We’re celebrating the month with a list curated by the firm’s DEI Committee. Members of the committee selected works that celebrate and teach the stories of noteworthy women throughout history. Scroll below to see what we’re reading, watching and listening to this month to learn more about women's history. Along with their recommendations, each committee member also shared why the particular work they selected inspired, educated, or engaged them; hopefully, you’ll find them inspiring, educational, and engaging too! 

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What We’re Reading…

The Left Hand of Darkness by Ursula K. LeGuin
Paige Willan recommends this book saying, “This masterpiece of a novel won both the Hugo award and the Nebula award; later, Ms. LeGuin became the first author to win both awards for two novels when her book The Dispossessed won both prizes in 1975. The story will challenge the way that you think about gender in a manner that will have you checking the publication date to confirm that you’re reading something published over fifty years ago. The author’s meticulous world-building will give you a whole new perspective on your own world, and her vivid descriptions will transport you into the lives of her characters. When I read this book in 2022, I regretted that I had not picked it up decades ago so that I could have learned the insights it brings earlier in life!”

What we’re watching…

She Makes Comics
Christopher Leavell recommends this 2014 documentary. This little gem had a budget of only $60,000 (funded by crowdsourced donations on Kickstarter) and is about the history of women in the comic book industry since the medium’s beginnings in the early 1900s. It won the best documentary award at Comic-Con International Film Festival in 2015 and spotlights the talented and passionate women working in a decidedly male-dominated industry.

9to5: The Story of a Movement
April Colby recommends this 2019 documentary which captures the real-life fight to improve working conditions, started in Boston, that inspired a hit movie (and one of April’s “all-time favorite movies that has inspired me since childhood”) and changed the American workplace. Thanks to the brave women in the 1970s who fought for better pay, more opportunities and an end to sexual harassment.

What we’re reading/watching…

Hidden Figures (book by Margo Lee Shetterly)
Lee Moylan recommends this movie which is based on a true story adapted from the book by the same name and authored by Margo Lee Shetterly. Lee said, “this should be inspiring to anyone who believes in themselves, even when others do not.” The story is about several brilliant African American mathematicians who played a crucial role in some of our country’s greatest achievements in the space race working for the National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics (NACA), which later became NASA. They did so while being surrounded by a sea of white men in suits and despite having to endure rampant racism and gender discrimination.

She Said (book by Jodi Kantor and Megan Twohey)
Ciera Bennett recommends this “great thrilling drama” based on a true story adapted from the book by the same name and authored by Jodi Kantor and Megan Twohey – two New York Times investigative journalists – who exposed sexual abuse allegations against Harvey Weinstein.

What we’re listening to…

Criminal, a podcast by Phoebe Judge
Paige Willan recommends episode 206: The Feather Lady and episode 204: They Came for the Judges which are both great listens. They tell the stories, respectively, of a scientist who became the foremost U.S. expert on identifying feathers for law enforcement and aviation investigators, and of the bravery and struggles of the female judges of Afghanistan as they fought for recognition, respect and, more recently, for their very lives. The smart, determined professional women featured in these episodes provide inspiring examples of perseverance.

What’sHerName, a podcast by Dr. Katie Nelson and Olivia Meikle
Ciera Bennett recommends this women’s history podcast which details the lives of many notable known and unknown women in world history.

Make sure to check out our other learning lists throughout the year! 

What’s a communication from lawyers without a disclaimer? As is usually the case with legal professionals, we don’t all agree on everything, so while the members of the DEI committee found educational value in each of these recommendations, by no means do they necessarily agree with all views set forth in any given work. These recommendations are not an endorsement of any kind.

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