Gloria Steinem: Her Passions, Politics, and Mystique

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Carol Publishing Group, 1997 - Biography & Autobiography - 501 pages
GIoria Steinem is America's most famous feminist. An icon of modern feminism, Steinem is known to the world as a celebrity, leader, and writer. When her name appears in the media, no explanation is necessary -- the name is the message.

For this first truly revelatory account of Gloria Steinem, Sydney Ladensohn Stern spent fifty hours interviewing Steinem, in addition to conducting interviews with friends, lovers, and associates from both her past and present. After joining the women's movement, Steinem cofounded Ms. magazine, the Ms. Foundation, the National Women's Political Caucus, and Voters for Choice. She has written innumerable articles and four books, including several major bestsellers; made hundreds of speeches every year; campaigned; organized; and raised money for an endless stream of organizations, causes, candidates, and individuals.

Yet inside the celebrity, symbol, and leader is a complex woman, a fascinating combination of contradiction -- courageous yet vulnerable, beautiful but insecure, generous and ambitious, highly intelligent yet at times willfully blind. She truly embodies the conflict between the traditional female role of "being" (pretty, charming, supportive) and the male role of "doing" (achieving success in the world).

While Steinem always wanted to be more than just another "pretty girl", she was not beyond using her looks, considerable charm, and sex appeal to both attract men and advance professionally. Her lovers include director Mike Nichols; screenwriter Robert Benton; speechwriter Ted Sorerison; and Olympic gold medalist Rafer Johnson.

By the time she discovered feminism in 1969 at the age of thirty-five, she had graduated from Smith Collegemagna cure laude; traveled in India; worked for a ClA front organization; gone undercover as a Bunny in New York's Playboy Club to write an expose; written a book, numerous articles, and a television satire; helped found New York magazine, for which she wrote a political column; and worked in the inner circles of political campaigns. Even then she was a celebrity, profiled everywhere, for her intriguing combination of glamour, intelligence, prominent lovers, and journalistic coups.

The fascination continues today, from her gossiped-about affair with real-estate magnate and publisher Mort Zuckerman to her power as the world's most influential feminist. Gloria Steinem: Her Passions, Politics, and Mystique examines this prominent woman in all her many and varied roles.

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GLORIA STEINEM: Her Passions, Politics, and Mystique

User Review  - Kirkus

Feminist icon, goddess, social climber, bunny—who is Gloria Steinem? All of the above, according to a serious new biography that examines Steinem's life from early childhood to ``this-is- what-63-is ... Read full review

Gloria Steinem: Her Passions, Politics, and Mystique

User Review  - Not Available - Book Verdict

Stern (Toyland: The High-Stakes Game of the Toy Industry, LJ 3/15/97) has attempted a readable portrait of a complex contemporary whose story is not nearly concluded. She obviously likes and admires ... Read full review


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