Talk:Robin Morgan

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Intro paragraph[edit]

As far as I know, Morgan did not come out as a lesbian in the 60's. For most of the decade she was married to a man, Kenneth Pitchford, and had a son in 1968 or 1969. I'm not sure that she ever "came out" as a lesbian in the traditional sense, though she did divorce Pitchford in the early 80's and has openly discussed her relationships with women in the intervening 25 years or so. She may, in the early 70's, have expressed solidarity with the burgeoning lesbian feminist movement, but to my knowledge (backed up by her memoir), she did not come out as a lesbian in the 60's. I'm removing that sentence from the introductory paragraph. GeekSquad geeksquad 15:33, 5 December 2005 (UTC)

"Gender feminist" is not, as far as I know, a term that Robin Morgan has ever applied to herself. Not surprisingly, since "gender feminism" is a name invented by Christina Hoff Sommers in order to criticize many different feminists who do not clearly have anything in common at all.

  • Radical* feminism is a coherent tradition of thought and practice, which Robin Morgan identified with. "Gender feminism" is not; it is someone else's category, and was invented for no purpose other than criticism. Inserting this alien category into her description strikes me as distinctly POV.

I've revised the opening paragraph accordingly, along with a little bit more information about Morgan's career. Radgeek 04:29, 13 Jan 2005 (UTC)

Disproportionate focus on childhood[edit]

The current version of the article seems to give a greatly undue weight to her family background and childhood years, which have little to do with the reasons she's notable enough to have an encyclopedia article... AnonMoos (talk) 13:07, 16 August 2011 (UTC)

I reworded the passages on subject's mother and biological father that were part of the article when you made this observation. I changed the chapter headings to "Early life and career" and "Parents." Every important statement is footnoted.

Please read the new passages carefully before you might consider reverting my edit. Robin Morgan's experiences regarding her birthfather, which included her believing phony stories told by her mother about him then years later visiting him at his medical practice, had a lot to do with her awareness of men's coldness to women. She became notable as one of the first feminists in the era after Betty Friedan's publication of The Feminine Mystique. These early feminists talked publicly about many, many cold and mean things men said and did; impregnating and abandoning a girlfriend was one of them. Let's retain the revelation of subject's biological father doing that. Thanks for your attention. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 04:22, 26 January 2013 (UTC)

editing book titles and domains for www[edit]

Recent edits were made to book titles and to website URLs:

  • In the titles Sisterhood Is Powerful, Sisterhood Is Global, and Sisterhood Is Forever, when title case is applied rather than sentence case, it would seem proper to capitalize only the first and third words (for different reasons) but not the second word. In this case, however, on or in the books themselves, the titles are capitalized for the initials of all 3 words. Sisterhood Is Global lists other books by the same author, in which some words are not capitalized even though title case is used, but for two of these three titles (the third hadn't been published yet) all the words have capital initials. I think capitalizing "Is" was by the author's preference to intensify meaning, but even if that was not why it was done on the books it should be reproduced in Wikipedia for these books. (Citation for one: Morgan, Robin, compiler & ed., Sisterhood Is Global: The International Women's Movement Anthology (N.Y.: Feminist Press of City Univ. of N.Y., 1st Feminist Press ed. [1st printing? printing of [19]96?], reprint 1996, © 1984 & 1996 (ISBN 1-55861-160-6)) (list Also by Robin Morgan on unnumbered page facing cover II; "Sisterhood Is Global" & "Sisterhood Is Powerful" both per p. [vii] (Morgan, Robin, Preface to the Feminist Press Edition (N.Y.C.: 1996)); "Sisterhood Is Global" & "Sisterhood Is Powerful" both per p. [xiii] (Morgan, Robin, Prefatory Note and Methodology (May, 1984)); "Sisterhood Is Global" per pp. [1] & 36–37 (Morgan, Robin, Introduction: Planetary Feminism: The Politics of the 21st Century (N.Y.C.: 1984)); "Sisterhood Is Global" twice per cover IV; but "Sisterhood is Powerful" on cover IV (author biography)).) See also the author's own website (<>, as accessed September 5, 2012). I restored accordingly.
  • I mention website URL editing only because, while the editing was fine in this case, given other edits it seems to have been done on the basis of a general assumption that is incorrect. While commonly both of the forms and will reach the same website for a domain, and in this case the two edits were fine, that's not always the case (the US IRS used to accept only one form and serve only a blank page for the other), and it's even possible to serve different websites according to whether the visitor typed "www." or not. Therefore, if one form works as intended and the other does not, the intended one should be cited and not the other.

Nick Levinson (talk) 16:33, 6 September 2012 (UTC) (Corrected my capitalization error and URL formatting errors: 16:55, 6 September 2012 (UTC))

  • It is understood that we would use the casing intended by the author over typographic conventions. I had originally noticed that the first edition of Sisterhood is Powerful (1970) was printed with the "i" uncapitalized. [1] All of the covers I could find of Sisterhood is Forever and Sisterhood is Global seem to have been printed with the title in all caps, except for one where the is is definitely lowercase. [2] I am persuaded, however, by the listing of other works in Sisterhood Is Global you mentioned and by the capitalization used on Morgan's website. I commend your sleuthing there.
  • As for website urls, one would hope that someday the increasingly vestigial nature of the www subdomain will be recognized by webmasters around the world, eventually leading to a clause being added to Wikipedia's manual of style discouraging its use. Until that day, I understand that the www appendage is not incorrect per se and am always diligent in verifying that the website url lands where it ought to. Cheers, Gobōnobo + c 18:45, 6 September 2012 (UTC)

Views on transsexuality[edit]

Like several other prominent radical feminists, Robin Morgan has generated controversy due to her views on transsexuality. I thought this was notable enough to include in the article, given that the Wikipedia articles of several feminists of a vaguely similar ideological bent (Mary Daly, Sheila Jeffreys, Germaine Greer) currently feature information about the subjects' views on transsexuality (the topic gets its own section in the Daly and Jeffreys articles). So I started a similar section in this article. I'm having trouble finding reliable sources to flesh out the section and establish notability, however. Any help, advice, or feedback would be appreciated. I'm also interested in hearing the opinions of others as to whether this is a valuable topic to include in this article. One source that would really help me develop this section is Morgan's 1978 book Going Too Far. It is supposed to contain some of her opinions regarding male-to-female transsexuals and crossdressers between pages 170 and 188. I might try to track down a copy of this book. Again, if anyone knows more about this topic I would appreciate hearing from you. Rebecca 08:17, 19 December 2012 (UTC) — Preceding unsigned comment added by Picture of a Sunny Day (talkcontribs)

It would be good if there was more to that section as it stands if it's available. Especially something more recent if possible, since it's regarding an incident from some 41 years ago (soon to be 42). I note another source, here, contains the assertion that she and others attempted to physically assault the person in question after that.Number36 (talk) 12:48, 25 December 2014 (UTC)
Here's something, apparently she provided a glowing recommendation for Sheila Jeffreys’ trans-exclusionary 2014 book Gender Hurts, as per here.Number36 (talk) 03:08, 26 December 2014 (UTC)

Less than an hour ago ...[edit]

... I restored passages that had been in the article more than a year ago. I reworded them and footnoted every important statement. They are very important when you consider that the early feminists talked publicly about the very same cold behavior that Robin Morgan's father exhibited. Please refer to the section on this page headlined == Disproportionate focus on childhood ==.

We are not focusing on her childhood period. We are revealing that when she became a feminist, she needed to look no farther than her own life to understand the coldness of biological fathers who abandon mothers and babies. Thanks for your attention. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 04:29, 26 January 2013 (UTC)

Parkinson's disease diagnosis and advocacy[edit]

I added details about Morgan's Parkinson's disease diagnosis and advocacy to the "personal life" section of this article. If anyone feels that this information would be appropriate in a different or new section (since this is a major focus of Morgan's advocacy work at this stage of her life), feel free to make a suggestion or move it. Gnusworthy (talk) 14:43, 8 January 2015 (UTC)Gnusworthy

Discussing the West Coast Lesbian Conference[edit]

My proposed changes in bold with explanation below:

"In 1973, Robin Morgan gave the keynote speech at the West Coast Lesbian Conference, in which she criticized Beth Elliott, a performer and organizer of the conference, for being a transgender woman.[1] In this speech she referred to Elliott as a “transsexual male” and used male pronouns throughout, charging her as “an opportunist, an infiltrator, and a destroyer-with the mentality of a rapist."[2] At the end of her speech she called for a vote on ejecting Elliot, with over two-thirds voting to allow her to remain, however the minority threatened to disrupt the conference and Elliot chose to leave after her performance to avoid this. According to an article in The New Yorker in May 2014, that day began a dispute, still ongoing between radical feminists and transgender women more than 40 years later.[3][4]"

  • Beth Elliott is a transgender woman and conference organizer and performer, not a "pre-surgery male to female transgender singer who wanted to perform at the conference"
  • She was asked to perform at the conference that she also organized- that is relevant information. It is cited in the reference.
  • it is more appropriate and more accurate to refer to Beth Elliott as a trans woman rather than a "pre-surgery male to female transgender singer." If you don't agree please see WikiProject LGBT Studies
  • No source purports that radical feminist is feminism itself. Source 4 clearly separates the two- thus the distinction is necessary.
  • And again trans woman is appropriate, "male-to-female transgender persons" is not.

Miffedmess (talk) 02:02, 17 June 2016 (UTC)

A transgender person's gender status, for the record, is not conditional on whether they've completed the surgical phase of the process or not — and, in fact, per people's medical privacy rights, nobody has any right to even ask whether the surgery has been completed or not. A transgender person's gender is not up for discussion or debate or weasel-wording about whether they're "really" their gender or not — we use the pronouns and descriptions consistent with the person's own self-reported gender identity, and do not take that right away from transgender people just to accommodate some other people's discomfort with the issue. So, to TLDR it for people, Miffedmess is entirely correct about this. Bearcat (talk) 18:15, 18 June 2016 (UTC)
    • ^ Pomerleau, Clark. "Califia Women: Feminist Education against Sexism, Classism, and Racism". p. 28-29. 
    • ^ Robin Morgan, "Keynote Address" Lesbian Tide. May/Jun73, Vol. 2 Issue 10/11, p30-34 (quote p 32); for additional coverage see Pichulina Hampi, Advocate, May 9, 1973, issue 11, p. 4
    • ^ Cite error: The named reference nyorker1 was invoked but never defined (see the help page).
    • ^ "1973: West Coast TERFs". October 12, 2013.