Sarah Eppler Janda and Patricia LoughlinOct 28, 2021
This Land is Herland
Gendered Activism in Oklahoma, 1870-2010
University of Oklahoma Press 2021
Cori Simon (Assistant Professor, University of Oklahoma) speaks with Sarah Eppler Janda (Professor, Cameron University) and Patricia Loughlin (Professor, University of Central Oklahoma) about their new edited volume, This Land is Herland: Gendered Activism in Oklahoma from the 1870s to the 2010s (University of Oklahoma Press, 2021).
This collection of essays documents the impact of women activists on the history of tribal nations and the state of Oklahoma, and is the first book in a new series “Women and the American West,” at the University of Oklahoma Press. The chapters showcase the stories and strategies of thirteen individuals, including Indigenous, Black, and white women, who strived to transform their communities through political, economic, or civil action. Progressive reformer Kate Bernard, civil rights activist Clara Luper, or Comanche leader LaDonna Harris might be known to some readers. But contributors highlight less-famous Oklahomans as well: including Cherokee historian and educator Rachel Caroline Eaton, NAACP organizer California M. Taylor, and Equal Rights Amendment (ERA) advocate Wanda Jo Peltier Stapleton. In this conversation, we learn about how the editors—colleagues and friends—conceived of the volume, recruited contributions from scholars at all stages of their careers, and modified the plan in response to feedback from contributors, colleagues, students, and readers. They provide an orientation to the volume’s structure and briefly discuss each chapter before turning to reflect on how the history of women in Oklahoma intersects with broad national and global political movements for racial justice, gender equality, and sovereignty.
Davis Cline is Associate Professor of History, University of Oklahoma and Co-Editor, Journal of Women's History