Date: 02/14/2015

Time: 2:00 pm

Price: $20 in advance

Join this tour with guide and historian Kathleen Hulser to learn about the downtown women who pioneered the "free love" lifestyle in the era around World War I, promoting sexual freedom for all. Emma Goldman, Edna St. Vincent Millay, Elizabeth Gurley Flynn, Louise Bryant, Susan Glaspell, Mae West and many others pushed the boundaries in the progressive and tolerant atmosphere of the Village. In theory and practice, fiction and journalism, the wild women of the Village experimented with ideas about gender equality and new psychological theories from Freud and others. Margaret Sanger, the model for Wonder Woman in the comics, preached the merits of birth control and published a paper advocating free thinking and open minds. The Village's tiny living accommodations gave women an excuse to avoid family formation, or to do it in unusual ways, like in the case of Crystal Eastman who shared a house with her brother and sister-in-law. Others, like Eleanor's Roosevelt's friends, Elizabeth Reid and Esther Lape lived in committed lesbian relationships as they fought for women's equality in the political arena. The cafes and later speakeasies of Prohibition-era Village offered a lover's playground, far from the censorious eyes of America's suburban Babbitts.

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