#6 Women Are Heroic

“Women Are Heroic” by Martha Lee Phelps. Pastel and collage. 18″x24″

“Women Are Heroic”

In our society and system of privilege, how do you define a hero?
A women who navigates the world with grace and vision despite all the odds against her: alone, female, enslaved, black, impoverished, illiterate. A woman born into slavery who chose to risk her own life repeatedly to guide others on a journey to freedom. A woman who served for the Union Army in the Civil War – from cook and nurse to spy and foot soldier. A woman who spoke and advocated for women’s suffrage. A woman who adopted a child as well as converted her home into a safe place for aged and indigent people of color. She died on March 10, 1913 at about 93 years old and was buried with military honors. 

In our society and system of privilege, how do you define yourself?
My definition reads like this: I am a cis-gender, white, middle-class, well-educated,  politically liberal, married American woman with children who was raised by cis-gender parents, who were also both white, middle-class, well-educated, politically liberal and more than six generations American-born. In short, I am a person of privilege. No matter how I try, I can never fully understand any other reality. Harriet Tubman’s life history is known to me, but the reality of her circumstance are forever foreign to me. I cannot begin to know her struggle, yet I can honor her with a commitment to awareness and willingness to take action.

So, how do you define yourself? If you substitute the word “trans” for cis, or “black” for white, or “immigrant” for American-born, the harsher realities of lack-of-privilege come into focus. If you add the words “Muslem” or “disabled” or “poor,” your awareness may change even more.

Understanding and realizing how we all benefit from the system of privilege, offers us the opportunity to may think more carefully about to rectify the situations of the burdened, and to actively oppose the problems that privilege creates in our society. 

Rising up against the odds, heroes surround us.

~ martha lee phelps

This is Protest Poster #6  from the collection “She’s Still Here”A collection of women’s protest art supporting the equal and human rights of folks from all walks of life, regardless of gender, race, origin, wealth, nationality, religion, ability, sexual orientation, identification or representation.

To learn more and become a Protest and Art Sponsor, please visit Point, Invitation & Message from mlp.

About Martha Phelps Studio ~ creative on purpose

...a meandering journal of a changing life and the unexpected graces it brings. Earlier posts may provide some history, but this series of writings aren't likely to follow a straight line as I explore topics such as raising kids, making choices, self discovery, the impact of change on a family and how to (hopefully) live with balance and purpose. www.marthaphelps.com
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