The discussion, held in the Winthrop House senior common room and moderated by Harvard College Democrats president Jacob R. Carrel ’16, was one of several “Conversations at Harvard” events this year.
McCaskill’s famous candor stood out as she kicked off the discussion by describing shotgunning a beer with her family after finding out that her 2012 Republican opponent, Todd Akin, had won his primary, a result she had famously orchestrated. The title of her memoir, “Plenty Ladylike,” is a dig at Akin’s comment that she was not “ladylike” enough.
“If you don’t redefine [‘ladylike’], and you allow the word to be signaling that someone is demure and deferential, then you’re denying a huge swath of amazing women their full femininity,” McCaskill, a Democrat, said after the talk. “I feel very feminine, and I’m proud of being a woman, and not for a minute do I think that my outspokenness or my ambition or my strategic mind takes away from my femininity.”
McCaskill began her political career at age 28 by knocking on more than 11,000 doors to campaign for the Missouri state legislature. On Wednesday, she described snide remarks thrown her way by male colleagues and a particularly memorable moment when a constituent told her to abandon campaigning and go find a husband, slamming the door in her face.
McCaskill encouraged students in the audience, particularly young women, to run for office, offering to help them strategize and campaign. “That’s the main reason I wrote this book: to inspire young women to own their ambition,” she said.
The event also focused on the challenges of high-profile political marriage. Shepard recalled friends, colleagues, and a St. Louis newspaper warning him not to marry McCaskill 14 years ago, but he said ambition has fueled the couple’s strong relationship. When Carrel apologized to Shepard for not giving him more of an opportunity to talk, McCaskill said, “Bless his heart, he’s used to it.”
Both McCaskill and Shepard said their marriage has remained an important source of support personally and professionally.
“It’s easier when you’re both strong and successful,” Shepard said.
The Stoics and St. Paul.Mr. C. P. Parker has formed a small private class to study the Stoic Philosophy in comparison with the teaching
Special Notice.MARGARET SHEPARD SOCIETY will give a Chinese entertainment, an evening in Peking, under the direction of Miss Clara M. Cushman,
Special Notice.BELCHER'S Dining Room, Lyceum Building, Harvard square. Board $7.00 per week. 6 tfFIN DE SIECLE CLOTHES. - Special prices for
HOCKEY GAME IN STADIUMThe Freshman hockey team will play Stone School in the third scheduled game of its season in the Stadium rink
Phillips Brooks House NotesThe service and ceremony of the commissioning of twenty young missionaries who are to go out under the American Board