Join us for a conversation between Liza Mundy and Rebecca Boggs Roberts on their respective books, Code Girls and Suffragists in Washington, D.C.
In 1942, reeling from Japan's devastating surprise attack on Pearl Harbor, the United States military launched a secret program to recruit young female college graduates to serve as code breakers in the newly ramped up war effort. In Code Girls, award-winning journalist and bestselling author Liza Mundy reveals for the first time the revolutionary achievements and patriotic service of these remarkable young women. As Mundy shows, their astonishing code breaking triumphs against the Germans and Japanese helped secure an Allied victory before their vow of secrecy nearly erased their vital contributions from U.S. history.
LIZA MUNDY is the New York Times bestselling author of The Richer Sex: How the New Majority of Female Breadwinners Is Transforming Sex, Love and Family and Michelle: A Biography. She was a long-time reporter at the Washington Post and has contributed to numerous publications including The Atlantic, TIME, The New Republic, Slate, Mother Jones, and Politico. She is a frequent commentator on prominent national television shows, radio, and online news outlets. A senior fellow at New America, Mundy is one of the nation's foremost experts on women and work issues.
Despite sixty years of relentless campaigning by suffrage organizations, by 1913 only six states allowed women to vote. Then Alice Paul came to Washington, D.C. She planned a grand spectacle on Pennsylvania Avenue on the day before Woodrow Wilson's inauguration-marking the beginning of a more aggressive strategy on the part of the women's suffrage movement. Groups of women protested and picketed outside the White House, and some were thrown into jail. Newspapers across the nation covered their activities. These tactics finally led to the ratification of the Nineteenth Amendment in 1920. In Suffragists in Washington, D.C., author Rebecca Boggs Roberts narrates the heroic struggle of Alice Paul and the National Woman's Party as they worked to earn the vote.
REBECCA BOGGS ROBERTS has been many things including, but not limited to, journalist, producer, tour guide, forensic anthropologist, event planner, political consultant, jazz singer and radio talk show host. Currently, she is a program coordinator for Smithsonian Associates, where she has made it a personal mission to highlight the history of our capital city. Roberts lives in Washington, D.C., with her husband, three sons and a big fat dog.