** The Highest Glass Ceiling by Ellen Fitzpatrick

Congrats to Hillary! Am I the only one to think it’s a little weird to call the female presidential candidate by her first name and the male candidate by his last name? A little disrespectful, perhaps? In any case, Ms. Clinton is not the first woman to run for president, and more interestingly she is not the first one to be on the ballot: she is the first one to be nominated by a major party. The Highest Glass Ceiling: Women’s Quest for the American Presidency tells the story of three women who ran before her, one who created her own party in the process (at a time when most women could not vote at all!) and two who campaigned all the way to their parties’ conventions. It’s so interesting to see a candidate in 1871 arguing that equality is not just a concept, but must be made concrete, or that the smear campaign against her focused on her supposed sexual escapades. Or that the second one, Margaret Chase Smith, was the only female senator upon her election in 1949. The most sobering lesson from this book is the historically gigantic financial gap between male and female candidates. It’s hard to be heard on a shoestring.

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