Stay up to date with the latest from MAKERS delivered straight to your inbox. Sign up for new stories from trailblazing women, a big dose of inspiration, and exclusive MAKERS content.

Newsletter Confirmation

Thank you for joining! Please check your inbox for our special welcome letter
with exclusive updates from MAKERS.


Miss America

Miss America

More From Alix Kates

In this video

Shulman on how the Miss America pageant was a "blatant example of sexism" but also became a surprising stage to teach those who were watching about women's liberation.

Alix Kates's Biography

Raised In:Suburban Cleveland, Ohio.
Early Career Aspirations: "My father was a lawyer…and inspired me to want to be a lawyer too."
Undergraduate Studies:Earned a degree in history and went on to study philosophy in graduate school.
A Genuine Housewife:"I represented the people whose lives [the feminists] were talking for."

Alix Kates Shulman is a feminist activist and writer who has penned fourteen books including her bestselling novel, Memoirs of an Ex-Prom Queen, considered one of the first of its kind to emerge from the Women's Liberation Movement. Her controversial 1969 essay "A Marriage Agreement" proposing that men and women split childcare and housework equally has been widely reproduced in magazines, anthologies and even a Harvard textbook on contract law.
Smitten with philosophy, Shulman moved to New York City following college to study at Columbia University Graduate School. After working as an encyclopedia editor for some years, Shulman eventually transitioned into a housewife, until she discovered the burgeoning women's movement. As a feminist activist Shulman became a member of early groups like New York Radical Women, Redstockings, and WITCH.
Shulman has been recognized and awarded for her writing and work by numerous organizations including the DeWitt Wallace/​Readers Digest Fellowship, the American Academy in Rome, the PEN American Center, and the Rockefeller Foundation Center in Bellagio, Italy. In 2000 she received the Woman 2000 Trailblazer Award from the Mayor of Cleveland.

Related Videos

Mae O'Malley
Mae O'Malley
Attorney & Entrepreneur

When San Francisco attorney, Mae O’Malley got pregnant, she realized she needed an innovative alternative that would give her the opportunity to balance work with the needs o...

Shelly Lazarus
Shelly Lazarus
CEO, Ogilvy & Mather

In her 40-plus years at Ogilvy & Mather, Shelly Lazarus went from frequently being the only woman in the room, to being the woman running the show at the global advertising gia...

Li Yinhe
Li Yinhe
China's First Female Sexologist

Li Yinhe is a sociologist, sexologist and LGBT rights activist from Beijing, China. Dubbed “China’s first sexologist,” Li is a pioneer for women and gender studie...

Diane English
Diane English
Creator, "Murphy Brown"

Diane English is an Emmy-winning film and television producer, director, and screenwriter. She is best known for creating the show "Murphy Brown," which ran on CBS from 1...