In a commencement speech at New York City’s School of Visual Arts last week, activist and icon Gloria Steinem spoke urgently on the state of the union.
“We are in a time of maximum change. On the one hand there is great danger, and I am not for a moment diminishing how great that danger is, and on the other hand, we are woke,” she said. “I have never in my life seen so much organic, sustained, enthusiastic, inventive, created, and fan-fucking-tastic activism.”
Steinem called the graduates “the arts of the heart,” and cautioned them that from her experience, revolutionaries have to proceed in a way that will renew a world they want to be a part of.
“If you want to have fun and laughter and sex and poetry and music at the end of the revolution,” she said, beaming at the cheering graduates and their families, “You have to have fun and laughter and sex and poetry and music on the way.”
Steinem was introduced by the Chairman of the School of Visual arts, Milton Glaser, who said of Steinem, “None of us will ever hear from anyone who has reset the direction of human kind more profoundly.” He called Steinem instrumental in “a change in the fundamental relationship between men and women”.
Steinem, visibly moved as she surveyed the auditorium, said, “I grew up in Toledo hoping, praying to be a rockette…I just want to say to my 10 and 11-year-old self — I’m on the stage at Radio City Music Hall and it’s better than being a rockette.”
Gloria Steinem: we think she’s fan-fucking-tastic.