Mimi Abramovitz

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Mimi Abramovitz
Born 1941
Nationality American
Alma mater University of Michigan
Occupation Author, educator, social worker

Mimi Abramovitz is an American author, educator and activist. Abramovitz's work focuses on civil and welfare rights of those living in the United States, especially women.


Abramovitz completed her undergraduate work at the University of Michigan, where she earned a B.A. in Sociology in 1963.[1] She went on to obtain her master's degree in social work in 1967 and her Ph.D in social work from Columbia University in 1981.[2]


Abramovitz moved to New Haven, Connecticut, where she became active in an existing organization and went on co-found other organizations. She became active in the American Independent Movement, an organization who summarizes their goal, "The American Independent Movement (AIM) has been working since 1966 to get people together against the rich, powerful few who run New Haven and the whole country".[3] She'd also go on, while in New Haven, to co-found with other women, New Haven Women's Liberation, an organization that allowed her to focus on welfare rights, organize anti-war rallies in Washington, D.C., and the unionization of Yale University clerical workers. Abramovitz would begin to teach social welfare policy at the Hunter College.

Abramovitz, along with Jan Poppendeick and Melinda Lackey created a course at Hunter College called the Community Leadership course, which consists of both education about the history of activism and training in relevant skills. Then students use these skills in the community, aided by a student organization, the Welfare Rights Initiative(WRI), which was also co-founded by an Abramovitz, Poppendeick, and Lackey. The WRI describes itself as a "grassroots student activist and community leadership training organization" whose mission is to train and support "students who have firsthand experience of poverty to effectively promote access to education for all".[4][5]

Abramovitz serves as the Bertha Capen Reynolds Professor of Social Policy and as the department chair Social Welfare Policy at Hunter College School of Social Work[1][6]

Awards and honors[edit]



  • Abramovitz, Mimi (1996). Regulating the lives of women: social welfare policy from colonial times to the present. Boston, Massachusetts: South End Press. ISBN 9780896085510. 
  • Abramovitz, Mimi (2000). Under attack, fighting back: women and welfare in the United States. New York: Monthly Review Press. ISBN 9781583670088. 
  • Abramovitz, Mimi; Morgen, Sandra (2006). Taxes are a woman's issue: reframing the debate. New York, New York: Feminist Press at the City University of New York. ISBN 9781558615229. 
  • Abramovitz, Mimi; Blau, Joel (2007). The dynamics of social welfare policy. Oxford New York: Oxford University Press. ISBN 9780195311709. 

Chapters in books[edit]

  • Abramovitz, Mimi (2011), "The U.S. welfare state: a battleground for human rights", in Hertel, Shareen; Libal, Kathryn, Human rights in the United States : beyond exceptionalism, Cambridge New York: Cambridge University Press, pp. 46–67, ISBN 9781107400870. 

Journal articles[edit]


  1. ^ a b c "Mimi Abramovitz". National Economic and Social Rights Initiative (NESRI). Retrieved 24 March 2012. 
  2. ^ a b Barbara J. Love (2006). Feminists who changed America, 1963-1975. University of Illinois Press. p. 2. ISBN 978-0-252-03189-2. Retrieved 4 January 2012. 
  3. ^ American Independent Movement (Conn.) (January 1970). AIM: bulletin of the American Independent Movement. The Movement. p. 78. Retrieved 24 March 2012. 
  4. ^ ARENSON, KAREN W. (June 10, 2003). "From Welfare to (Course) Work; Students on Benefits Help Write Their Own Rights". New York Times. Retrieved 26 March 2012. 
  5. ^ Golden, Kristen (Oct 1999). "Head of the Class". Ms. Magazine. 
  6. ^ "Mimi Abramovitz". National Council for Research on Women. 2012. Retrieved 5 January 2011. 
  7. ^ "Mimi Abramovitz". The Women's Media Center. Retrieved 24 March 2012. 
  8. ^ "Past Awardees". Council on Social Work Education. Retrieved 24 March 2012. 
  9. ^ "American Academy of Social Work and Social Welfare announcment". www.aaswsw.org. November 19, 2015. 

External links[edit]