AAUW advances equity for women and girls through advocacy, education, philanthropy and research. Founded in 1881, AAUW is open to graduates with an associate or higher degree from an accredited college or university, as well as students currently enrolled in college. Dues support the operations of the Dearborn-Michigan branch, founded in 1933, as well as the state and national organizations.
Only 20 percent of the United States Congress, 6 percent of governors, and 24 percent of state legislators are women. Yet women constitute more than half the population of the United States of America. In political empowerment, measured by women’s representation in decision-making structures, America lags behind 53 other nations! This lack of political parity impacts women’s health issues, economics, education and the world of work.
“Elect Her,” a half-day program, sponsored by the American Association of University Women, is designed to encourage more college and university women to run for student-government positions with an eye to building a pipeline for their future participation in seeking elected offices. Subsequently, three-quarters of attendees who report running for student office win. This may well be due to the pragmatic approach and concrete tools provided in the training.
When women actually throw their hats into the ring and run for office, they succeed in being elected as much as men do. The problem seems to be that women just do not feel as comfortable and confident about running for office as men do. Irrational fears may stymie their participation as much as anything. They are less likely to feel they are qualified. They may feel consumed by familial obligations. They are less likely to expect they can raise the necessary funds to run for office. Those who do run usually wait to be recruited before even considering seeking office. Lack of role models also factors into women’s reluctance to run. Also, gender expectations and body shaming can complicate campaigns. (Consider Donald Trump’s arrogant condemnation of Carly Fiorina’s face!) Lack of prior political experience at every level of education also contributes to feelings of inadequacy among many women. So in a conscious effort to quell such anxieties and to push women toward the daunting goal of growing political parity in America, AAUW is investing in training bright young women to become change agents.
According to the Global Gender Gap Index, America lags behind in political leadership. In political empowerment, America ranks 54th, behind Nordic nations, Canada, South Africa and France. It is ahead of the United Kingdom and Australia however. At the World Economic Forum last January, Sheryl Sandberg declared: “In the developed world, we have an ambition gap at the personal level.” Even though women earn more bachelor’s degrees than men, snag more entry-level jobs, and are promoted to more managerial positions every year, they are stalling at the decision-making levels of politics.
Society still expects them to do most of the housekeeping and child-rearing. Have you ever heard a male candidate questioned about the effects his potential political office will have on his children? The B-word, not “bossy,” is alive and unwell. Such damnable and damaging dog-like imagery persists and prevails. The glass ceiling still slices and dices lots of women. So many women learn to close off potential dreams and set their sights lower than men. The ambition gap stops a lot of compelling and talented women from taking a political leap. All in all it is a complex-systemic problem.
Lee Savage, AAUW-MI College/University Liaison, facilitates the annual AAUW event, “Elect Her,” on the University of Michigan-Dearborn campus along with her colleagues in the Women’s Resource Center. Students from other schools (such as Henry Ford College, Madonna University, Schoolcraft College, and Wayne State University) attended last Friday’s session as well.
Topics included the importance of women running for office, how to make an impact, the nuts and bolts of running for student government, the importance of communication and how to create and deliver an effective elevator speech, a short pithy statement about one’s mission and purpose. State Representative Stephanie Chang and Kim Trent, Wayne State Board of Governors, shared insights by telling their unique personal narratives about working for others in the political arena prior to seeking and holding political offices themselves.
What was gained? Participants left feeling more confident. Participants left valuing their singular life experiences and perspectives. Participants left with a greater desire to give back to their educational institutions, workplaces and communities. AAUW-Dearborn members left feeling better about the future, after having encountered so many bright, creative, determined, future activists.
Every dream can be anchored in reality and grounded in a place to start. Decades from now, some of the attendees will surely be role models for other young women. Perhaps those future female students won’t have come of age doubting their qualifications and capabilities. By helping young women, AAUW works to achieve more equitable communities, states and nations. Surely everyone in America can agree that no country can afford to squander the talents and abilities of half of its people.
Pictured in the foreground, to the left of the poster, is the AAUW facilitator from Portland, Maine, Katie Shorey. Thanks to Judy Monroe for providing these photographs of some of the student participants, UM-D staff from the Women’s Resource Center, as well as members of AAUW-Dearborn. In attendance from AAUW-Dearborn were: Kim Foo, Anne Gautreau, Sarah Lebrell, Diana Marx, Peggy Mazzara, Judy Monroe, Melinda Reeber, Lee Savage and Dr. Andrea Smillie.
Under the University of Texas’ admissions policy, Texas high school seniors who graduate in the top 10 percent of their class are automatically admitted. That 10 percent fills most slots in each entering class. For the small number of spots that remain, Texas uses a race-conscious admissions policy. Abigail Fisher, the plaintiff, is white. Because she was not in the top 10 percent of her Texas high-school class, her application was evaluated under the race-conscious admissions policy. Denied admission, Fisher attended and graduated from a different school. Still she filed suit against the university for using race-conscious admissions. Advocates for educational access are concerned that the court’s hearing Fisher v. The University of Texas suggests that some justices may want to further limit the use of race-conscious admissions.
In last year’s Burwell v. Hobby Lobby decision, the Supreme Court ruled that closely held corporations can’t be required to cover contraception through their employee health insurance plans. As part of the Affordable Care Act, the government created an exemption to the contraceptive care requirement for religious organizations and an accommodation for religiously affiliated nonprofits. Religiously affiliated nonprofits fill out a form that explains their religious objections to contraception; then the government arranges for coverage of employees’ contraceptive care. A small number of religious nonprofits filed lawsuits objecting to the accommodation. Even filling out the accommodation form is seen as an infringement on their religious liberty because it triggers contraceptive coverage for their employees. Consequently, more employers could restrict employees’ access to contraception.
This term the court could also decide access to abortion care and the right to choose.
In an attempt to restrict and even eliminate women’s access to legal abortion, some states have passed TRAP (targeted regulation of abortion providers) laws. Designed to prevent doctors from performing abortions altogether, TRAP laws have been passed under the guise of protecting women’s health, even though provisions do nothing to increase the standard of care. Two challenges to TRAP laws, from Texas and Mississippi, could become the most direct challenge to reproductive rights that the court has heard in years.
Read more at <aauw.org> in “For Women and Girls, an Important Year at the Supreme Court” by Mollie Lam, Legal Advocacy Fund Manager.
Next June, University of Michigan-Dearborn students and peers will be heading to the National Conference for College Women Student Leaders at the University of Maryland for the eighth time! NCCWSL—the acronym is pronounced “Nick Whistle” — is the premier event for college women who want to seek leadership roles. Participants represent more than 280 institutions of higher learning. They’re diverse. They’re ambitious. They’re activists. After attending, the vast majority of participants reported feeling more confident about taking initiatives to improve their campus or community.
Dr. Monica Porter, Assistant Vice Chancellor for Student Success, stated that the first year UM-D became involved, 2009, just she and two students attended. Impressed by what she saw taking place, she returned from the conference determined to grow student involvement. She was determined to send a busload of students. This year UM-D sent two buses with sixty students, representing 13 colleges and universities to the conference! That’s pretty phenomenal success. What is even more astonishing is that UM-D students did not have to pay any registration fees this year! Donations from AAUW-MI, AAUW-Dearborn and various faculty and campus initiatives, along with student fund raising, took care of the costs.
After Dr. Porter’s initial foray, Lee Savage, Program Manager for the Women’s Resource Center, accompanied students to NCCWSL for the next six years. She has seen tremendous changes occur in the students who attend. “It is so impactful that it can actually improve students’ academic achievements.” She adds that one participant indicated she had found, “the confidence to know she could follow her passion as an undergraduate. It’s seeing that kind of spark that makes NCCWSL so significant for me.” For some students, it is their first trip out of state. It is their first experience on the campus of a residential college. It is thrilling to visit the nation’s capitol, Washington, D.C., with all its grandeur and iconography.
Shareia Carter, Director of the Women’s Resource Center, added that one of the most gratifying aspects of the experience is that the participants become well aware of the importance of “giving back to campus and community. It is always refreshing to see theory transform into practice in higher education.” For example, one group of returning students started an American Association of University Women Student Organization on the UM-D campus, the first in the nation!
At a luncheon designed to illuminate the NCCWSL experience this past week, four student panelists who had attended this year were the featured speakers. All four participants did an outstanding job articulating issues and attitudes involving gender equity today. Clearly, their experiences were valuable and transformational! Members of AAUW who were present felt genuine pride as the realization dawned that programs sponsored by their organization are making genuine changes in this country and across the globe when it comes to expectations of equity for women.
Gay Johnson, a middle-aged, non-traditional student at UM-D, was the first panelist to speak. A natural-born storyteller, she regaled everyone with the challenges of staying in a dormitory with communal bathrooms and modest furnishings when her life experience has been being educated on primarily a commuter campus. In a more serious vein, she shared how impressive the addresses and awardees were. All were inspirational women leaders in business, politics and academics. Gay relished the practical advice shared about learning how to manage career goals and job searches. Her own aspirations shifted at NCCWSL when she realized that working for the State Department could provide fascinating, challenging employment, along with the opportunity to travel to different parts of the world to live and work.
Dalya Hazim is a student at Schoolcraft College majoring in biology. She plans to attend medical school eventually. She noted her gratitude to the AAUW-Northville branch for providing her a scholarship to attend NCCWSL. Her favorite part of the conference was listening to the two keynote speakers. One spoke about sexual assault, and Dalya indicated that it awakened a realization within her, “If this is not happening around me does not mean that it is not happening. We have an obligation to others who have endured such things.” Dalya Hazim has already proved that she has been empowered and has ramped up her leadership skills. Upon her return from NCCWSL, she applied to become a member of the national AAUW Student Advisory Council.
According to the national AAUW website, “Each year, 10 college student leaders from all over the country are chosen to serve on the National Student Advisory Council (SAC) based on their leadership potential and commitment to gender equity. Throughout the year, the SAC members advise AAUW on the needs of college students and organize feminist activist projects on campus. They also serve as peer leaders at the National Conference for College Women Student Leaders (NCCWSL) and play an integral role in planning and promoting the conference. The 2015–16 SAC are a unique group of passionate volunteers, mentors, and world travelers, but most important, they’re fierce advocates for social change. They are committed to women’s leadership and empowerment through their work to spread body positivity, demand reproductive justice, and end sexual violence. The multilingual, multifaceted SAC are our future physicians, policy makers, community organizers, and leaders in business.
“Dalya Hazim was born and raised in Iraq, which gave her the opportunity to
compare the advantages and struggles women face both in the United States and
abroad. Hazim believes in giving opportunities to young women to lead in their own
communities. She currently attends Schoolcraft College in Michigan, where she
volunteers with service projects that support underrepresented populations through
the Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society.”
Mawj Mohammed is studying political science and philosophy at UM-D. She is active in politics on campus. She was grateful to receive a full ride for the conference as she would have had to take time off from work and suffered loss of income too in order to attend. In witty fashion, she said that perhaps the hardest part of attending was suffering “jet lag from the bus.”
One anecdote she shared was about gaining a new insight into diction and how it affects individuals in unique ways. In one session, the moderator asked everyone to indicate whether or not they were feminists. Mawj indicated that about 98% of the attendees considered themselves to be so, while another 2% felt the word negated themselves in some fashion. Some participants preferred the word, “humanist.” Some persons of color indicated they felt a measure of dictation about choices that should be freely made, i.e. the freedom to wear attire that others might judge negatively. She explained, “Feminism is a very broad term that I didn’t know people take so personally.”
Mawj Mohammed’s family moved to this country from Iraq. She has become a naturalized citizen and said, “It was weird being in Washington, D.C. as a refugee from Iraq, now a citizen, surrounded by all that power and decision making.”
N’Kenge Gonzalez has always seen herself as a strong, even rebellious, spirit. She is a senior at UM-D and explained that attending was like learning to unlock doors with all the skills of a locksmith. NCCWSL emboldened her so much that she is now the student liaison for another AAUW initiative on campus, Elect-Her, which aims to teach the skills necessary to assume leadership and eventually run for office. She provided a number of examples of skills she had learned, everything from crafting a succinct message to making “it” happen. Women of distinction attain their levels of achievement via clear goals, clear messages and clear plans. N’Kenge has just been named to the AAUW-MI Student Advisory Council, which is modeled upon the National Student Advisory Council.
Ellen Judge-Gonzalez, lecturer in communications on the campus as well as being Director of the Student Outreach and Academic Resources (SOAR) Program for non-traditional students, summed up the significance of NCCWSL by declaring: “It is transformative! Students return bubbling with enthusiasm. They are empowered and determined. NCCWSL changes the trajectory of their goals. It’s a win-win for everyone.
Clearly, the conference is one of the three, most significant, annual events on this campus.” Happily for AAUW-Dearborn, Ellen Judge-Gonzalez also serves as the program vice-president for the branch.
For those interested in learning more about NCCWSL, contact Lee Savage at 313-583-6445 or go to <www.nccwsl.org> .
Gloria Steinem has written a valuable essay on Ann Jone’s “groundbreaking, non-fiction work about battery.” It was published on the “Feed Your Need to Read: Sustenance for the Hungry Mind” website. (Check their site out too!)
October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month. This is a revolution in itself. Until I was in my forties, we didn’t have a word for domestic violence, much less a month. It was just called “life.” If police were called, they might come to halt the disturbance, but their definition of success was getting the victim and the criminal back together again. And even when a woman was murdered by her husband or lover, there was some suspicion that she had been unfaithful or otherwise disobedient, and was the cause of a very gendered and inevitable event known as “a crime of passion.”
This was part of our very patriarchal legacy from English common law. A murderer who used, say, infidelity as an excuse could get his charge lowered from murder to manslaughter. Indeed, in some jurisdictions, the joke was that the wronged husband was released with $50 and a new suit of clothes.
I say this to assure you that we’ve come a long way from laws that stopped at the household door in the name of privacy, considered a husband and wife to be one legal entity, and thus deprived women of the freedom from bodily harm that was otherwise protected in law. It’s important to keep a grip on how far we’ve come as we use this month to teach such facts as these:
Add up all the deaths of Americans in 9/11, in the war in Afghanistan, and two wars in Iraq. Now add up all the American women who have been murdered by their husbands or boyfriends since 9/11. Even according to FBI statistics, the second number is greater than the first.
The most dangerous place is not in the street, on the road, or in public. An American woman is most likely to be injured or killed in her own home by a man she knows.
There have been many books written about domestic violence and they have helped to change consciousness and police practices; to pass and re-authorize the Violence Against Women Act, to lobby for state and federal funding for hotlines and battered women’s shelters; to introduce the Battered Women Syndrome as a recognized legal self-defense, and to overcome an anti-feminist rightwing position that calls shelters “Runaway Wives Centers” and believes women are either at fault for not obeying the men in their lives or are as likely to batter them as vice versa. But if you can honor this hard-won month by reading or re-reading one book, I recommend Next Time, She’ll Be Dead by Ann Jones.
For one thing, she herself grew up in a family of violence, so she knows the cycle of assault and contrition that can cause victims to believe they are at fault, or that their own good behavior might alleviate their fate, or that the bonds of love and family are more important than their own safety and freedom. As she writes, “My father was a drunk, a wife beater, and a child abuser. That’s never the whole story, of course, so he was also other things: a modestly successful businessman, a civic leader, a war hero, an athlete, a prizewinning angler, a churchgoer, a tenor, a patriot, a Republican, a baseball fan, a formidable player of gin rummy.” It’s with whole truth like this that she alerts readers to the fact that dangerous and abusive men don’t come with a sign that the victim should be able to read.
For another, she writes about the whole problem of violence inside the supposedly private world of the family, and she does, “begin at the beginning to explain where some of the sticking places are, and why—despite all our good will—we slide backwards.” She knows this extreme imbalance of power between males and females—of every race, caste or class—is buried deep within a patriarchal system in which males must control reproduction, and therefore the bodies of females. It is not going to be uprooted easily.
She also illuminates domestic violence by its parallels with other forms of physical and psychological servitude. As she writes, “The fundamental difference between marriage and slavery is that most battered women can and do leave, although, like slaves who fled, many are pursued by men who would capture or kill them. Hence the modern underground railroad.”
And she outlines the ways in which the law itself may address, punish and diminish battering, but also may contribute to it: for instance, making the victim leave her home for a shelter, but leaving the victimizer quite comfortable there, or obtaining a piece of paper called a restraining order; something that helps with a future prosecution but may only serve to enrage the batterer at the time.
Finally, Ann Jones ends with practical actions—for women and men—in understandable, spine-stiffening terms. For instance: “Stay away from a man who disrespects any woman, who wants or needs you intensely or exclusively, and who has a knack for getting his own way almost all of the time … prepare yourself as best you can with education, training, and job skills to lead an independent life … report [violence or harassment] to officials and talk about it to other women. If officials take no action, talk about that, too … volunteer to help at a battered women’s shelter … It’s important for men to take action to end male violence as well … 70 percent of the victims of male violence are other men … male violence is the problem of men … just as racism is the problem of white people …”
This is a mind-blowing, sanity-saving, revolutionary book. If you read Sex and World Peace by Valerie Hudson et al, you will also know that violence against females is the biggest indicator and normalizer of all other violence. Perhaps “domestic violence” should be called “original violence.”
Read this book as a place to start a spiral of change that won’t stop. As Ann Jones concludes: “Things change when people stop being resigned to things as they are.” Let her words enter your life, and it will never be the same.
Come to Henry Ford Centennial Library on Thursday, Oct. 8, 2015, for the launch of The Big Read — Dearborn, a community-wide initiative that will focus upon 19th century poet and writer of the macabre, Edgar Allan Poe. This new initiative launches at 6:00 p.m. The Oct. 8 launch will include free activities for children and adults, inspired largely by the poem “The Raven,” Poe’s most famous work.
Craft-making for all ages as well as a screening of the 1963 film, The Raven, starring Vincent Price, will be featured. The activities planned for the October 8 launch are designed to help people answer the question, “Do You Know Poe?”, a tag line for the promotion of The Big Read.
Dearborn encourages people of all ages to read for pleasure and enlightenment. Engagement in interesting activities related to reading Poe is designed to increase interest and delight in reading. The Great Tales and Poems of Edgar Allan Poe will serve as the centerpiece of the 2015-16 program. Poe is also well known for “The Tell-Tale Heart,” “The Pit and the Pendulum,” “The Black Cat,” and the poem, “Annabel Lee.” Although considered the inventor of detective fiction, Poe also wrote early versions of science fiction stories. His writing has inspired many films.
During the Oct. 8 launch event, light refreshments will be served in the Rotunda area of the library, and the evening will include brief remarks from Mayor John B. O’Reilly, Jr., Library Director Maryanne Bartles, and a representative from DFCU Financial, which is a major sponsor (Raven Level) of The Big Read — Dearborn.
Lots of fun and intriguing events centered on Poe are planned for February and March of 2016.
The Dearborn Public Schools and many Dearborn institutions, businesses, and organizations support The Big Read. AAUW-Dearborn is a proud community partner. Other community partners include the Dearborn Public Library, Dearborn Community Fund, Artists’ Society of Dearborn, Dearborn Education Foundation, Dearborn Public Schools, The Henry Ford, University of Michigan-Dearborn’s Mardigian Library, Arab-American National Museum, Dearborn Heights Libraries, Dearborn Inn, Dearborn Library Commission, Dearborn Symphony Orchestra, Friends for the Dearborn Animal Shelter, Friends of the Library-Dearborn, Henry Ford Academy, Muslim American Youth Academy, Oakwood Medical Library, and Dearborn Historical Museum.
This is the second Big Read experience for Dearborn. In 2014, the focus was on author Jack London and his, The Call of the Wild.
The Big Read is managed by Arts Midwest, and is a One Book, One Community program of the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA).
Typically, college grads earn a million dollars more over their careers than high-school graduates.
The U.S. Department of Education has created a new website called “College Scorecard” which provides annual average costs of individual colleges, their graduation rates and salaries earned by their students after graduation.
Although attending college provides rewards beyond earning a salary, this website reveals how much money students borrow in exchange for their earnings after graduating.
In addition, “There is an earning gender gap at every top university. The size of the difference varies a great deal. At Duke, for example women earned $93,100 per year on average, compared with $123,000 for men, a difference of $29,900. At Princeton, men earned more and women earned less, for a difference of $47,700. Women who enrolled at Cornell earned more than women who enrolled at Yale,” states Kevin Carey who directs the education policy program at New America.
The website also explores financial aid for low-income students and the likelihood of their debt burden falling into default. For instance, at Wayne State University, over 40% of students had failed to pay back ANY of their student loans five years after graduation.
When Viola Davis won an Emmy last night for ABC’s “How to Get Away With Murder,” she became the first African-American to win a best drama actress Emmy. Then she gave an acceptance speech that reminded all of us to cherish and honor opportunity for all in America.
“‘In my mind, I see a line. And over that line, I see green fields and lovely flowers and beautiful white women with their arms stretched out to me, over that line. But I can’t seem to get there no how. I can’t seem to get over that line.’
“That was Harriet Tubman in the 1800s. And let me tell you something: The only thing that separates women of color from anyone else is opportunity.
“You cannot win an Emmy for roles that are simply not there. So here’s to all the writers, the awesome…people who have redefined what it means to be beautiful, to be sexy, to be a leading woman, to be black.
“…Thank you for taking us over that line. Thank you to the Television Academy.”
Branch member, Karen Monroe has shared this:
Collette Cullen, AAUW-Dearborn member, Dearborn resident, and long-time educator is scheduled for a Meet and Greet to introduce her book, Annie Finds Her Magic: Helen Keller’s teacher tells her story.
Cullen has polished her depiction of Annie Sullivan through her own experiences as a special-needs educator, years of research, and from her dramatic monologue, “Annie Speaks.” In her newly released book, she tells the story of how Annie Sullivan unlocked the dark-silent world of Helen Keller.
Due to Sullivan’s perseverance and ingenuity, Helen learned to communicate with sign language and read and write in braille. Eventually she even conquered speaking. The bond between them opened the door to Keller’s lifelong learning and advocacy for the disabled.
Although the book is written for the young-adult market, its timeless message makes it appeal to a broad spectrum of readers. Collette Cullen, in the persona of Annie Sullivan, is scheduled for the Meet and Greet on September 17 from noon to 5:00 p.m. and on September 18 from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. Cullen’s book couldn’t be more in tune with the focus of AAUW-Dearborn’s biggest fundraiser.
Eighty percent of the money from the used-book sale provides scholarships for students at UM-Dearborn and Henry Ford College. Funds are also distributed to programs that support students and advance women’s issues. One portion of net proceeds is donated to the national AAUW organization to support its mission of education, advocacy, philanthropy and research. Ultimately, this local effort reaches locally, nationally and globally by providing avenues to gender equity.
Whether an individual is a book collector, an avid reader, or a casual browser, AAUW-Dearborn’s Annual Used-Book Sale is bound to have something of interest. The yearlong effort collecting and sorting books for the sale comes to fruition September 17, 18, 19, and 20 upstairs at the Dearborn Ice Skating Center. On September 17 from 10:00 a.m to noon there is an early preview available for $15 for those who want first dibs. The remainder of the sale has free entree and runs from noon – 7:00 p.m. on Thursday, from 10:00 a.m. — 7:00 p.m. on Friday, from 10:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. on Saturday and from 1:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m. on Sunday. Over 20,000 books have been sorted into 50 categories to assist those with specific areas of interest. Mysteries are alphabetized by author. Other categories include fiction, science, cook books, crafts, poetry, philosophy, spirituality, foreign language and travel. Other forms of media are also available including vinyl records (78s, LPs, and 45s), DVDs, and CDs. Bag days are scheduled for Saturday ($8 a bag) and Sunday ($2 a bag).
In addition, a special room holds Children and Young Adult books as well as board games. These books are sorted by reading level. The Premier Room offers special books: collectibles, antiquarian, photography and coffee table books, books about Henry Ford and more expensive children’s books. There are several Paper Art Books available for purchase including Harry Potter: A Pop Up Book based on the film phenomenon. Another book, Mythology: The God’s, Heroes, and Monsters of Ancient Greece, is a beautiful descriptive pictorial that offers fold outs to highlight additional information and detail. A section will be devoted to Henry Ford. A signed copy of The Ford Road: 75th Anniversary, Ford Motor Company 1903-1978 by Lorin Sorensen is available. Other interesting finds are books from the Folio Society that are printed in England and slip boxed for preservation, an Easton Press leather bound book of Huck Finn and a collection of books from Lakeside Press from the 1980s and 90s.
The branch holds a membership drive at the sale. This year’s theme is “Commitment and Camaraderie. ” Membership v.p. Rosa Scaramucci will be present to explain branch activities and goals. A special membership rate of $49 is available at this event. Further information will be provided about an Open House planned for October 27 for prospective members to learn about study and interest groups that meet for enrichment and conversation.
AAUW-Dearborn welcomes the community to “join us for this important fundraising event.” Judy Monroe, Book-Sale Chair declares, “If you are a part of the 64th Annual Used Book Sale, you are a part of the effort toward equality, lifelong learning and societal change. Whether you support the event by donating a book, browsing, or learning about AAUW, you are helping. Stop in and find something of interest. We look forward to seeing you at the sale!”
More information is available at < https://www.facebook.com/pages/AAUW-Dearborn-MI-Branch/161808680687461> or at <http://dearborn-mi.aauw.net/book-sale/> .
The people who come to the AAUW-Dearborn Used-Book Sale are worth meeting because they are thinkers. They are often passionate about their interests in reading. They are often unusually intelligent. They are often on a personal mission. They realize there is magic to be found in books. They realize reading is beneficial in many ways. Although singular in aspect, many of these seekers fall into categories. They may well be educators, hobbyists, historians, travelers, crafters, spiritualists, romantics, poets, or detective wannabees. They share the ability to be carried away by the magical transport of words. Some arrive with lists, some arrive with children, some arrive with friends, some arrive with an obsessive- compulsive need to read. All leave having discovered great finds and incredible bargains! Most significantly perhaps is that when a customer exits this extraordinary-annual, used-book sale, that customer has gained benefits beyond saving money.
Consider that when you read, YOU:
Reduce your stress as you increase your tranquility. Research suggests reading is a great way to relax. Just six minutes worth can reduce levels of stress by two-thirds! Reading silently slows the heart rate and releases tension from muscles. It beats the effects of music, walking, or chocolate! “Losing yourself in a book is the ultimate relaxation. By losing yourself in a thoroughly engrossing book you can escape from the worries and stresses of the everyday world and spend a while exploring the domain of the author’s imagination. This is … an active engaging of the imagination as the words on the printed page stimulate your creativity and cause you to enter what is essentially an altered state of consciousness.” — David Lewis, cognitive neuropsychologist
Answer the big questions life has to offer. Who am I? Why am I here? What constitutes the good life? Is destiny predetermined? What is just? Books allow you to become part of the unending conversation from Greeks to Romans and ever onward. “To sit alone in the lamplight with a book spread out before you, and hold intimate converse with men of unseen generations — such is a pleasure beyond compare.” ~ Kenko Yoshida
Learn from the past. Universal human experiences are nothing new. Human nature with its favors and flaws will always be with us. Problems persist, but those who are grounded in history at least can place them into wise perspectives after having explored what it is to be truly human. “Books are humanity in print.” – Barbara W. Tuchman
Explore possibilities. Books from many specialized fields are available at the sale: automobiles, biography, computer science, crafts, diet and health, history, and religion. Books invite you to expand your understanding of the world and how it works. “Books are the compasses and telescopes and sextants and charts which other men have prepared to help us navigate the dangerous seas of human life.” ~Jesse Lee Bennett
Shake off complacency. Reach beyond your comfort zone. When you tackle a tough read, your comprehension level is certain to increase. As you become a more competent reader, you’ll be a more confident one as well. “Books can be dangerous. The best ones should be labeled “This could change your life.” ~Helen Exley
Share with the best minds ever. Challenge yourself to read a classic work of literature. Parents forever chide children to pick their friends carefully. Picking a book carefully can pay off in similar measure.“When you reread a classic you do not see more in the book than you did before; you see more in you than was there before.” ~Clifton Fadiman
Fight back against those who would deny you the right to read. Books worth reading often force us to question assumptions and conventions. “There are worse crimes than burning books. One of them is not reading them.” ~Joseph Brodsky
Commune directly with great minds who wrote in order to clarify and share their ideas, passions and insights. “Books are the bees which carry the quickening pollen from one to another mind.” ~James Russell Lowell
Disappear into your own world. Taking time to meditate upon your own views and perceptions is well worth doing. “A book is the only place in which you can examine a fragile thought without breaking it, or explore an explosive idea without fear it will go off in your face. It is one of the few havens remaining where a man’s mind can get both provocation and privacy.” ~Edward P. Morgan
Become excited by ideas while remaining calm and centered. Discovering passion is another reason to find happiness in reading. “Sometimes, you read a book and it fills you with this weird evangelical zeal, and you become convinced that the shattered world will never be put back together unless and until all living humans read the book. And then there are books… which you can’t tell people about, books so special and rare and yours that advertising your affection feels like a betrayal. It wasn’t even that the book was so good or anything; it was just that the author… seemed to understand me in weird and impossible ways.” ~John Green
Books may well be the most glorious pastime humans have ever devised; and the AAUW-Dearborn book sale is the most glorious, local sale ever devised! Hope to see you and your brain, along with all those other neat brains and inquiring minds, at the AAUW-Dearborn Branch’s 64th Annual Used-Book Sale.
September 17, 18, 19, and 20, 2015, upstairs at the Dearborn Ice Skating Center (DISC) located at 14900 Ford Road just east of Greenfield Road.
- Thursday, September 17 from noon to 7:00 p.m.
- Friday, September 18 from 10:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.
- Saturday, September 19 from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. BAG DAY! Only $8 per bag!!
- Sunday, September 20 from 1:00 p.m to 4:00 p.m. LITERACY DAY! Only $2 per bag!!