[Daily article] March 8: Louise Bryant

Louise Bryant (1885–1936) was an American feminist, political
activist, and journalist. After growing up in rural Nevada and
graduating with a degree in history from the University of Oregon, she
wrote for two newspapers, the Spectator and The Oregonian. After leaving
her first husband in 1915, she married John Reed and moved to Greenwich
Village, where she formed friendships with leading feminists of the day.
Like Reed, she took lovers, including the playwright Eugene O’Neill and
painter Andrew Dasburg. Her news stories were distributed by Hearst
during and after her trips to Petrograd and Moscow, and appeared in
newspapers across the United States and Canada. Generally in sympathy
with the Bolsheviks during the Russian Revolution, her articles featured
Catherine Breshkovsky, Maria Spiridonova, Alexander Kerensky, Vladimir
Lenin, and Leon Trotsky. A collection of articles from her first trip
was published as a book in 1918, Six Red Months in Russia. After Reed’s
death in 1920, Bryant wrote for Hearst about Turkey, Hungary, Greece,
Italy, Russia, and other countries. The Bryant–Reed story is told in
the 1981 film Reds. Her neglected grave in Versailles was restored in
1998.

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Today’s selected anniversaries:

1618:

German astronomer and mathematician Johannes Kepler discovered
the third law of planetary motion.

1658:

After a devastating defeat in the Second Northern War, King
Frederick III of Denmark–Norway was forced to give up nearly half his
Danish territory to Sweden to save the rest.

1910:

French aviator Raymonde de Laroche became the first woman to
receive a pilot’s licence.

1924:

Three violent explosions at a coal mine near Castle Gate, Utah,
U.S., killed all 171 miners working there.

1978:

BBC Radio 4 began transmitting Douglas Adams’ The Hitchhiker’s
Guide to the Galaxy, a science fiction radio series that was later
adapted into novels, a television series, and other media formats.

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Wiktionary’s word of the day:

distaff:
1. A device to which a bundle of natural fibres (often wool, flax, or
cotton) are attached for temporary storage, before being drawn off
gradually to spin thread. A traditional distaff is a staff with flax
fibres tied loosely to it (as indicated by the etymology of the word),
but modern distaffs are often made of cords weighted with beads, and
attached to the wrist.
2. The part of a spinning wheel from which fibre is drawn to be spun.
3. Anything traditionally done by or considered of importance to women
only.
4. A woman, or women considered as a group.

___________________________
Wikiquote quote of the day:

  We are a bunch of hooligans and anarchists but we do clean up
nice. … Look around, ladies and gentlemen, because we all have stories
to tell and projects we need financed. Don’t talk to us about it at the
parties tonight. Invite us into your office in a couple days, or you can
come to ours, whatever suits you best, and we’ll tell you all about
them. I have two words to leave with you tonight, ladies and gentlemen:
“inclusion rider”.  
–Frances McDormand

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