Particular Passions

Particular Passions: Talks with Women who Shaped our Times


Louise Nevelson - Herstory.

Louise NevelsonLynn GilbertComment

"What I see about humanity makes me a pessimist. But in my work I’m an optimist. Look at humanity, look at what’s happening on this earth. I think anyone who takes the attitude that they can do something that will change the world is very naive. For instance, I’ve taught art. I’ll say to my students, “Well, what do you want?” “I want perfection,” they say. I say, “Well, who in the hell do you think you are that you can demand perfection?” It’s nonexistent anyway. Words like ruthless and sacrifice are kind of false judgments. You don’t do it that way. When you have labor pains, you don’t say, Could I have done it this way or that way? You go into labor. Those words belong to what we call three dimensions. I didn’t think like that. Living the way I did... see, I broke all the traditions. If I wanted a lover, I had a lover. I didn’t have to get married again. So I had courage to live as I understood it. I thought that art was more important than other things. I work for myself. It was only because I had so little confidence in the world that I wanted to build my own world, not the world, my world."

— Louise Nevelson, in Particular Passions: Talks with Women Who Shaped The World.

The oral biography of Louise Nevelson, whose work and vision elevated sculpture to its current place of prominence in the arts. Available at Apple and Amazon.


Lynn GilbertComment

“I want women’s history to be legitimate, to be part of every curriculum on every level…..I want people to be able to take Ph.D.’s in the subject and not have to say they are doing something else.” – Gerda Lerner, from the New York Times Obituary, 1/3/13

“In the mid-1960s, armed with a doctorate in history from Columbia University…..Dr. Lerner entered an academic world in which women’s history scarcely existed. “In my courses, the teachers told me about a world in which ostensibly one-half the human race is doing everything significant and the other half doesn’t exist,”

At Sarah Lawrence, where Dr. Lerner began teaching history in 1968, she was the driving force behind what is widely credited as the first graduate program in women’s history in the United States, established in 1972.” - NY Times obituary, Jan 3th, 2013

Today, 2013, there are more than 900 women's/gender/feminist studies programs, departments, and research centers around the world with web sites. Women have reclaimed their rightful place in history, due in part to Gerda Lerner.

For me, there is a personal connection with her. The first program she launched was at Sarah Lawrence, my old alma mater, and later Dr. Lerner used my book, Particular Passions: Talks with Women Who Shaped our Times as core reading material in one of her classes.

In a first of its kind, Particular Passions: Talks with Women Who Shaped Our Times identifies the women who had an historic impact on women’s rights from the 1920s to the late 1970s, from the arts and sciences, athletics and law, mathematics and politics, among many other disciplines.

These oral biographies recorded in the 1970s, include Gloria Steinem, Betty Friedan, Julia Child, Billie Jean King, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Diana Vreeland and forty other women. The stories capture an historic period in their own words.

Some women are world renowned, others less so, but all icons in their respective disciplines. The stories are more inspiring today considering the obstacles they overcame.

"A fresh, rich, and absorbing book. An excellent contribution to women’s literature." —Andrea Hindig, ed., A guide to Archives and Manuscript Collections in the United States

Particular Passions and 12 individual chapters available for all e-reading devices. Chapters are $.99 on Amazon and Apple.

They truly inspire.


Tatyana GrosmanLynn GilbertComment

"Wouldn’t life be worth living,
Wouldn’t dreams be coming true?
If we kept the Christmas spirit,
All the whole year through."
- Carolyn Wells.

Christmas at the Galleries Lafayette dome

Christmas at the Galleries Lafayette dome

 On the cusp of 2012’s last day, with that eternal hope, we move on to the next year, a little older, and a little wiser.

I would like to pour a glass of champagne and toast in the New Year with you but as I can’t, I can offer something that will give you pleasure that will certainly have more lasting value.   Check out one of the chapter’s from Particular Passions:  Talks with Women who Have Shaped our Times which recounts the rich oral histories of pioneering women of the twentieth century from the arts and sciences, athletics and law, mathematics and politics.

It isn’t "the bubbly", but it’s cheaper than champagne…(if you were to buy it)…It’s only $0.99 and I know these stories will inspire you going in to the New Year.

Try the Tatyana Grosman chapter. What she did with her life will touch your soul and make you realize anything is possible.

"One of those rare, rare books that pick your life up, turn it around and point it in the right direction." — K.T. Maclay

Tatyana Grosman on Amazon and Apple.

Check it out. You won't be disappointed.