“Well-behaved women seldom make history.”

Laurel Thatcher Ulrich is credited with the famous quote, “Well-behaved women seldom make history,” which is a phrase that has since become a slogan of just about everyone and their grandma. (There’s even a coffee mug floating around the BUST office with the quote.) But at 92nd Street Y’s recent talk on Women in Politics moderator Alison Stewart, host of PBS’s Need to Know, asked authors Nora Ephron and Rebecca Traister how this quote relates to women in politics historically and today.

From Palin’s “reality-show presidential style” bus tour to Clinton’s  “driving Chris Matthew around the bend,” Traister explains that “women behaving ‘badly’ makes for good, fun politics.” Yet Hillary was running after her husband had already held the presidency, which historically was the manner in which women first were elected into offices across the United States. And later Ephron talks of how divorce became a political act in the 1970s Second-Wave movement: “Marriages come and go, but divorce is forever.”

Enjoy the clip yourself:

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And on a related note, check out Crunk Feminist Collective’s recent post on female politicians ‘false feminism.’ Because a woman candidate does not necessarily mean a women’s candidate, and just because women are making history does not mean they are feminist pioneers. 

Tagged in: women in politics, women behaving badly, Sarah Palin, Rebecca Traister, Nora Ephron, Laurel Thatcher Ulrich, hillary clinton, Alison Stewart, 92nd Street Y   

The opinions expressed on the BUST blog are those of the authors themselves and do not necessarily reflect the position of BUST Magazine or its staff.

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