The Good Girls Revolt: How the Women of Newsweek Sued Their Bosses and Changed the Workplace by Lynn Povich

The Good Girls Revolt: How the Women of Newsweek Sued Their Bosses and Changed the Workplace - Lynn Povich

Lynn Povich was one of the women involved in the two class action lawsuits that occurred in the early days of the second wave feminist movement. She was a researcher, a reporter, a writer, and moved all the way up to the number 3 spot as an editor. She recounts the story in vivid detail, sometimes a little too gossipy. Katherine Graham might seem like a publishing titan today, but back when she first took over The Post Company (Newsweek was owned by the same owners as the Washington Post), she was just oblivious to how to run, react, and diffuse conflict. She came across as really dim-witted heiress.

 

The women who joined Povich in the lawsuits get good page time, along with their bad ass lawyers; first was Eleanor Holmes Norton, then assistant director over at the ACLU. When the Newsweek women needing mentoring, she was their number one coach. When the women needed a kick in the pants, she was the star kicker. The second lawyer was Harriett S. Rabb; she was a dog with a bone when it came to holding Newsweek's feet to the fire.

 

The book was very much to the point of who, why, and when, which is not surprising since Povich is a reporter at heart; the NOOK edition I read was 205 pages. There is context as background and how the lawsuits fit in the bigger narrative of the revolutionary 1960s and early 1970s. She does address race and that the black researchers were asked to join the lawsuit but they had declined and she gave reasons why they declined. I like the way Povich also spotlights the women working at Newsweek today (Newsweek is now a joint publication with The Daily Beast) and their efforts to fight back on discrimination that is still on-going at Newsweek.