Our daily lives have to be a satisfaction in themselves

Emily Larned (publisher)

You may remember how it was in the early ’70s. Feminists were really angry. We thought that we’d suddenly discovered something that we’d explain to men and everything would change. —Selma Miriam

This beautiful book is handmade by Emily Larned, put together with archival writing from the feminist vegetarian restaurant Bloodroot, which began as a weekly feminist cooperative in 1975 and two years later evolved into the restaurant and bookstore in Bridgeport, CT. Comprised of essays and photographs from founding members Selma Miriam and Noel Furie, Our daily lives… encapsulates the history and philosophies of the group with topics like ethical vegetarianism, cooperative work, and of course feminism as a whole, which for Bloodroot is very earthy and even witchy in form. Essays discuss express the importance of maintaining hope during the ’80s and the trials of the Reagan administration and how they fully live their ideals, rather than work in an oppressive system to earn small amounts of leisure time.

We want to lead our lives so that what we make of what we find on earth is magic. The way to find it is in the ritual of patiently doing, over and over, what is required of the work. Frequently a knitter is asked, “How long does it take to do that?” though the question never arises in regard to jogging, movie-going, or mall shopping. If we choose not to join the patriarchy, what are our other choices? There is no set of procedures to follow to become a conscious rebelling radical feminist. But a hunger exists which some try to feed by means of new-age spirituality, sensing that what is missing is what is holy. Some study Native Americans and try to imitate a past not their own, recognizing the integrity of that culture, an integrity which still exists amongst traditional people in pockets around the world. The question is how to find traditional women’s work, healing, magic, and spirit when one is not a traditional woman.

There’s a lot here that informs today’s wave of feminism and very little that feels outright passé.

A second printing is currently available.