The Feminist Agenda: Jennifer Baumgardner on feminist literature for all


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Jennifer Baumgardner is a writer, activist, filmmaker, and lecturer. Baumgardner joined The Feminist Agenda to discuss the need to publish feminist children's books, letting projects go, and editing the new feminist book review LIBER. Originally from Fargo, Baumgardner has been working in New York City at the intersection of feminism and publishing for three decades, beginning in 1993 as an intern (and later editor) at Ms. magazine. From 1997 on, she wrote dozens of features for a diverse array of magazines (Glamour, Teen Vogue, Bust, Dissent, Harper’s Bazaar, Harper’s, The Nation, Elle, New York Times, etc.), authored/co-authored seven books (including Manifesta, Look Both Ways: Bisexual Politics, and Abortion & Life) and wrote, directed, and produced two feature-length documentaries (It Was Rape and I Had an Abortion). Baumgardner has keynoted at more than 250 colleges and universities and, in 2002, co-founded Soapbox Inc., a speaker’s bureau. She was writer-in-residence at the New School from 2008 to 2012. From 2013 to 2017, Baumgardner was the publisher and chief executive of the Feminist Press, where she relaunched their children’s publishing, created the award-winning queer imprint Amethyst Editions with Michelle Tea, and established the Louise Meriwether prize for a debut author of color. From 2017-2021, she was editor in chief of the Women’s Review of Books, a long-running feminist print review out of Wellesley. In December, she left Women’s Review to edit the new feminist book review LIBER, with Katha Pollitt and others. She lives in the Village with her husband, two sons, and two cats.