In 1972, Marlo Thomas and the Ms. Foundation for Women created the book/album Free To Be...You and Me
to promote gender neutrality and the idea that anyone of any race/color/creed could grow up to be anything they imagine. Its success resulted in a 1974 TV special that featured many of the same performers (Alan Alda, Mel Brooks, Carol Channing) spreading the message of equality through song, poetry, skits and at least one slightly-disturbing (in retrospect) puppet sketch. Was the endeavor nothing but pie-eyed optimism and naivete? Cultural historian Lori Rotskoff
examines the legacy of Free To Be
in her book, When We Were Free to Be
. Rotskoff discusses and signs copies of her book at 7 p.m. tonight at Left Bank Books Central West End Location (399 North Euclid Avenue; 314-367-6731 or www.left-bank.com
). Admission is free.
Mon., Jan. 14, 2013