Review the story of how women have helped shape America over the last 50 years through one of the most sweeping social revolutions in our country’s history, in pursuit of their rights to a full and fair share of political power, economic opportunity and personal autonomy.
Narrated by three-time Academy Award-winning actress Meryl Streep, MAKERS: WOMEN WHO MAKE AMERICA takes its cue from the movement’s motto, “The personal is political,” delving into the personal lives of its subjects. The film is built from first-person, intimate accounts of women who experienced this time of change, including movement leaders such as author and feminist activist Gloria Steinem and Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton; opponents such as conservative activist Phyllis Schlafly; celebrities including media leader Oprah Winfrey and journalist Katie Couric; political figures such as U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton; business leaders such as Linda Alvarado, president and CEO of Alvarado Construction, Inc., and a co-owner of The Colorado Rockies; and many “ordinary” women who confronted the dramatic social upheaval in their own lives.
“By spotlighting some of the most remarkable women in our nation’s modern history, MAKERS: WOMEN WHO MAKE AMERICA will tell the comprehensive story of how women have advanced in our country during the last half century. We know the documentary will educate and enlighten, but we hope it will also inspire viewers to make positive changes in their own communities,” said Paula A. Kerger, President and CEO of PBS. “PBS and our member stations are proud to support this celebration and dialogue about the role of women in our society.”
Through the perspectives of those who lived through historic milestones, MAKERS: WOMEN WHO MAKE AMERICA will recount the seminal events in the Women’s Movement, including the publication of The Feminine Mystique in 1963, the battles to end discriminatory laws and practices over the following decade, and Anita Hill’s testimony against Clarence Thomas before the Senate Judiciary Committee in 1991. It will also go much further, telling the surprising and unknown stories of women who broke barriers in their own chosen fields — from the coal mines of West Virginia to the boardrooms of Madison Avenue. And it will take the story to today, when a new generation is both defending and questioning the legacy of their mothers.
“I’m so happy that we’re finally hearing the stories and voices of women who make America,” said Gloria Steinem, one of the project’s advisors and featured subjects. “We do what we see, not what we’re told, so an incomplete story of this country damages everyone. MAKERS will not only change our picture of the present, but release talent for the future.”