Monday, October 22, 2007

Our Portland Blind Dates: ULA AND EILEEN

Besides going through friends of friends, we have been taking up the offers of women who reach out to us. Ula (left) is one such lady, who considers herself a feminist. She was born in Warsaw, Poland, and raised in Huntsville, a town in Alabama with many first-generation immigrants. At the tender age of 23, she has already become a lawyer, hoping to get into civil rights, particularly gay marriage.

“The way they taught law at Lewis and Clark is very genderblind,” she told us over a beer. “They spent one day on feminist law. They never talked about how the law treats people differently.” Being a lawyer is Ula’s way to directly confront the issues that are important to her. When we ask how she learned about feminism, she told us that she was very young. “I always felt that way,” she said, “but college gave me the language to talk about things I’ve always believed.”

The next morning, we met with Eileen (right), another woman we only know the name and number of. Eileen is from Connecticut, outdoorsy, and does not consider herself a feminist because she doesn’t like labels—“people get scared away by them.” She is aware that “we live in a patriarchy” but doesn’t identify with the term “if it has a connotation of being superior to men.” Her job is writing an ecoblog (linked here), and environmental issues are very important to her. Do environmental activism and women’s issues ever intertwine? “I think they do in the sense that we are very disconnected to Mother Earth lately.”

--Nona

1 comment:

Charlotte said...

Speaking from my experience, I beleive that the law world is the one place where younger women really do face discrimination. The hours are so loooong and ridiculous that people outwardly look down on you for cutting down to have kids.