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Houston Breakthrough 1979-09
Page 24
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Houston Breakthrough 1979-09 - Page 24. September 1979. Special Collections, University of Houston Libraries. University of Houston Digital Library. Web. August 1, 2014. http://digital.lib.uh.edu/collection/feminist/item/536/show/531.

Disclaimer: This is a general citation for reference purposes. Please consult the most recent edition of your style manual for the proper formatting of the type of source you are citing. If the date given in the citation does not match the date on the digital item, use the more accurate date below the digital item.

(September 1979). Houston Breakthrough 1979-09 - Page 24. Houston and Texas Feminist and Lesbian Newsletters. Special Collections, University of Houston Libraries. Retrieved from http://digital.lib.uh.edu/collection/feminist/item/536/show/531

Disclaimer: This is a general citation for reference purposes. Please consult the most recent edition of your style manual for the proper formatting of the type of source you are citing. If the date given in the citation does not match the date on the digital item, use the more accurate date below the digital item.

Houston Breakthrough 1979-09 - Page 24, September 1979, Houston and Texas Feminist and Lesbian Newsletters, Special Collections, University of Houston Libraries, accessed August 1, 2014, http://digital.lib.uh.edu/collection/feminist/item/536/show/531.

Disclaimer: This is a general citation for reference purposes. Please consult the most recent edition of your style manual for the proper formatting of the type of source you are citing. If the date given in the citation does not match the date on the digital item, use the more accurate date below the digital item.

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Title Houston Breakthrough 1979-09
Publisher Breakthrough Publishing Co.
Date September 1979
Subject.Topical (LCSH)
  • Women--Texas--Periodicals
  • Feminism--United States--Periodicals
Subject.Geographic (TGN)
  • Houston, Texas
Genre (AAT)
  • periodicals
Language English
Physical Description 28 page periodical
Format (IMT)
  • image/jpeg
Original Item Location http://library.uh.edu/record=b2332724~S11
Digital Collection Houston and Texas Feminist and Lesbian Newsletters
Digital Collection URL http://digital.lib.uh.edu/collection/feminist
Repository Special Collections, University of Houston Libraries
Repository URL http://info.lib.uh.edu/about/campus-libraries-collections/special-collections
Use and Reproduction Educational use only, no other permissions given. Copyright to this resource is held by the content creator, author, artist or other entity, and is provided here for educational purposes only. It may not be reproduced or distributed in any format without written permission of the copyright owner. For more information please see the UH Digital Library Fair Use policy on the “About” page of this website.
File name index.cpd
Item Description
Title Page 24
Subject.Topical (LCSH)
  • Women--Texas--Periodicals
  • Feminism--United States--Periodicals
Repository Special Collections, University of Houston Libraries
Use and Reproduction Educational use only, no other permissions given. Copyright to this resource is held by the content creator, author, artist or other entity, and is provided here for educational purposes only. It may not be reproduced or distributed in any format without written permission of the copyright owner. For more information please see the UH Digital Library Fair Use policy on the “About” page of this website.
File name femin_201109_553aw.jpg
Transcript Commcdiennc Robin Tyler by Claire Noonan In early 1978, Robin Tyler and partner Patti Harrison were in the last year of a three-year contract with ABC-TV. The network was spending hundreds of thousands of dollars on several pilots, trying to transform the feisty feminist comedy team into a cute, all-female version of Donnie and Marie. Tyler still lives in Hollywood and works regularly at the Comedy Store, but she is no longer with ABC. Dropping off the path toward commercial success on network television was an important change for Tyler. Like many comics, Tyler's material is based on her experience, but her lesbianism was off-limits in the eyes of the established media. "I was not allowed to talk about my own life. For a comic that's like being a pianist and not being allowed to touch the keys," she says. "Once I decided to come out, I had a ton of new material." Tyler's abundance of new material, from raucous personal anecdotes to sophisticated political insights, is smoothly presented on her first solo album, Always a Bridesmaid, Never a Groom (Olivia Records). Among the many outrageous incidents in Tyler's life is her unusual introduction to show business: "When I was 19, I was arrested in New York for being a female impersonator. They arrested 44 guys and me. The guys were all saying 'She's a girl, she's a girl!' and the cops were saying, 'That's what you all say.' They wouldn't send me in to be examined by a man, in case I was a woman, and they wouldn't send me in to be examined by a woman in case I was a man, because they could get sued. So they allowed me one phone call—and you know who I called? The New York Post." In the early days of her partnership with Patti Harrison, they braved public derision to publicize feminist causes. In 1970, they invaded the Rams-Raiders game in front of 65,000 people, demanding more sports scholarships for .women. They brought the only anti-war USO show into Vietnam by hiding their feminist politics behind mini-skirts and cutesy tunes when they interviewed for the USO. They were booed off stage for kissing in front of 2,000 GI's, saying "Love is never having to say you're sorry." They invaded I. Magnin's men-only room at Christmas time, dressed as the Good Fairy and Santa Claus, singing "Hark, the Herald Angels sing, women's liberation is the only thing; Peace on earth and mercy mild, day care centers for every child." Tyler makes no apologies about her political commitment: "The women's movement has invented a new word- assertive. If you're assertive you take your own power. But if you're aggressive, you take power over someone. I'm aggressive because I plan to help take power back from the people who took power from me." With that goal clearly stated, she says she would like to become president of a major TV network. "Then I would ban all commercials that make women look like imbeciles. That would mean 24 hours of uninterrupted programming." For Tyler, comedy is a political weapon, something you turn around so you can laugh at the ludicrousness of the establishment that's oppressing you. Casting light on that truth can make people laugh. To prove her point, Tyler thinks that the Democrats and Republicans should change their national emblem to a prophylactic. "It stands for inflation, halts production, protects a bunch of pricks, and gives a false sense of security when one is being screwed." Tyler mocks the humor of the macho culture that gave us such anti-female material as "Take my wife, please" and all those mother-in-law jokes. She advises the men, "If anyone gets insecure, just do a crotch check. It's still there." Her well-placed one-liners demolish such targets as Anita Bryant ("who is to Christianity what paint-by-numbers is to art") and those right-to-lifers ("You have to agree with them. . . if you don't, they'll kill you."). And she puts her audience on notice: "I'd like to say that if I offended anyone, you needed it." Though Tyler's politics are bold and confrontative, her delivery and style are professionally polished. She is hopeful that her album and her recent appearances on cable TV will reach an audience beyond the lesbian and feminist communities. "I think laughter transcends barriers," she says, "and I hope it will help transcend the barriers of who we are." Off the Wall Productions will be presenting Robin Tyler in concert, Friday, October 5 at Agnes Arnold Auditorium, University of Houston/Main Campus at 8 p.m. The performance will be interpreted in American sign language and the auditorium is wheelchair accessible. Also appearing will be Houston artist and singer Lee McCormick. To complete a weekend of women's culture, Off the Wall Productions will also be presenting singer/songwriter Therese Edell (From Women's Faces) and Betsy Lippitt in concert on Sunday, October 7 at Fitzgerald's at 8 p.m. Also appearing will be Houston singer Rawslyn Ruffin. Single tickets for both performances are available at BD & Daughter, The Bookstore, Wilde 'N' Stein, and at the University of Houston Ticket Center (Tyler only). The tickets are also available as part of the UH Fall Series package. Tyler will be at BD & Daughter and Wilde 'N' Stein (both at 520 Westheimer) on Thursday, October 4 at 7:30 p.m. Everyone is welcome. There will also be a sound workshop on Monday, October 9 at Fitzgerald's. For more information on these events call 524-0342. Claire Noonan is with Off the Wall Productions. The Michigan Womyn's Music Festival by Sharman Petrie Fall into the ocean We all come from the Goddess And to her we shall return Like a drop of rain. As recording artist Therese Edell said, "This is not America. It's paradise. It's Womyn 9s land." If you've ever dreamed *of total womyn's space, the annual Michigan Womyn's Music Festival, held every new moon in August, is the place to go. Located on 200 acres of wooded farmland seven miles outside of the small town Hesperia, Michigan, it is the only all womyn's music festival of its kind. Close to 7000 womyn attended the Fourth Annual Michigan Womyn's Music Festival. The festival provided excellent music throughout each day from obscure to acclaimed performers that included Holly Near, Theresa Trull and Terry Garthwait. There were also numerous workshops on topics ranging from sound engineering to karate. Merchants and craftswomyn also came from coast to coast to sell their goods. As a first time viewer, I was in awe of the warmth, sharing, enthusiasm and smooth sailing that prevailed throughout the entire four days of the festival. Imagine an environment free of violence and crime—no thefts (I never worried about leaving my belongings unattended, including about $800 worth of camera gear.). Also, all womyn shared the work load that ranged from sound and lighting to plumbing, as well as the conventional cooking and clean up. The womyn that attended the MWMF felt freed from everyday inhibitions that they live with in a male society. Many wore little or loose clothing, and lesbian couples openly expressed their affection for each other. Not even male children were allowed in the area as this was totally a womyn's space-a womyn's experience. There was an excitement in the cool crisp Michigan air and the energy spread to the performers. I have never seen Holly Near give such an electrifying perform ance. The musical themes reinforced the bonds that many womyn share—political struggles, violence against womyn, and feelings of warmth and love that womyn can have through the positive energy that we project among ourselves. I will never forget my first images of the Michigan Womyn's Music Festival as they are very dear to me and have given an added strength and purpose towards a better life for myself and all womyn. I'll be going next year and every year that this event is held, if for no other reason than to recharge on this high energy output that 7000 womyn working harmoniously together can give. Further information about the festival may be obtained by writing We Want the Music Collective, 1501 Lyons, Mt. Pleasant, Michigan 48858. Sharman Petrie is a freelance photographer and this is her first published story. HOUSTON BREAKTHROUGH 24 SEPTEMBER 1979