Remember the Ladies! (updated to our time: Remember the Marginalized!)

Happy Women’s History Month! Many American women have read the quote by Abigail Adams, the second First Lady of the U.S., who admonished her husband, John, to “remember the ladies” as he and his brethren were drafting the U.S. Constitution. Mrs. Adams letters to her husband are epic, and a fuller version of “remember the ladies” bears repeating, over and over: "Remember the ladies, and be more generous and favorable to them than your ancestors. Do not put such unlimited power into the hands of the Husbands. Remember all Men would be tyrants if they could. If particular care and attention is not paid to the Ladies we are determined to foment a Rebellion, and will not hold ourselves bound by a

Bringing ESD to Latin America

​​When we last brought you news about Aude Mulliez, she was hard at work using the skills and tools she gained at ESD Global's very first instructor training to bring ESD to her community in Costa Rica. Now that she's established several successful programs in her own community, her vision has grown, and she's doing everything in her power to bring ESD training to communities throughout Central and South America. Aude is here today to tell us about the invaluable work she's doing. Welcome, Aude! Q. Please tell us a bit about what you’ve been up to since attending ESD Global’s instructor training in 2017. A. After camp, I realized I had something tangible to share with the communities I had h

First Wave Feminism and Self-Defense

​Most of my knowledge about women training in martial arts at the beginning of the twentieth century has come from jokes and cartoons such as the Punch item, “The Suffragette Who Knew Jiu-jitsu,” featured on p. 129 of Wendy L. Rouse’s Her Own Hero. That cartoon shows a woman who has just thrown several cops over a fence standing ready and able to take on the horde of officers cowering away from her. As a woman martial artist, I know women can fight, and, as a feminist, I know that when men make jokes about women beating up men, they are trying to belittle something that scares them. However, I had no idea that so many women in both the United States and the United Kingdom took up boxing and

Fighting Like Amazons: Suffrage and Self-Defense

Next year is the 100th anniversary of the ratification of the 19th Amendment granting women the right to vote in the United States. As we near the centennial celebration, it is important to remember just how long and hard women fought to get the suffrage amendment approved. Suffragists petitioned presidents, lobbied Congress, and challenged state and local laws in court. When those efforts failed, they marched, rallied, and protested. Militant suffragists risked arrest and imprisonment picketing the White House. In jail, some went on hunger strike to call attention to their cause. A few of the most radical suffragists even took up the study of self-defense to empower themselves for the polit

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