The woman behind Elizabeth Warren’s blueprint for the presidency
Rebecca Brenner is a PhD candidate in history at American University in Washington, DC.
Last week, Sen. Elizabeth Warren delivered a speech before her largest crowd yet, in Washington Square Park in New York. She invoked the memory of former labor secretary Frances Perkins, a witness to the 1911 Triangle Shirtwaist fire, which took place adjacent to the site of Warren’s speech to argue that “big structural change” is possible through a combination of relentless activism outside of government and a leader like Perkins or Warren herself on the inside.
Warren, a Democratic presidential candidate, isn’t the first politician to use public memory of a historic figure to convey her message, but Perkins, who rarely receives national attention today, is a unique choice. Although Warren’s speech marks a key point in remembering Perkins, it also offers insight into the candidate’s hopes for a potential presidency. She depicted Perkins as a trailblazing female politician who fused progressive idealism and pragmatic policy change, exactly what she hopes to be.
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“Villages preserve culture: dress, food and dance are a few examples. As villages grow in population and turn into towns, local cafes make way for large American chains. Handmade leather sandals are discarded for a pair of Western sneakers.
Due to its small size, a village fosters a tight-knit sense of community. Justpeace.org explains the meaning of the African proverb, “It takes a village,” by stating that a sense of community is critical to maintaining a healthy society.
Village members hold a wealth of information regarding their heritage: they know about the ancient traditions, methods of production and the resources of the land. When villages become dispersed or exterminated in times of war, this anthropological knowledge disappears.
Large cities are not as conducive to growing and producing foods such as fruits and vegetables. Villages, on the other hand, usually have ample amounts of land and other resources necessary for growing conditions.” The Importance of Villages by Catherine Capozzi
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