A prolific author and activist, American Barbara Deming is known for her nonviolent political activism. She directed plays, taught dramatic literature and wrote and published fiction and non-fiction works.

On a trip to India in 1959, inspired by Gandhi’s writings, Barbara became politically active, advocating nonviolence in all spheres of life. She was active in several peace organisations, demonstrated for peace and civil rights, and was jailed several times for acts of civil disobedience.

She joined demonstrations at the Pentagon in 1967 in opposition to the Vietnam War and the Feminist Walk of the New York City Women’s Pentagon Action in 1983. She was a member of a group that went to Hanoi during the Vietnam War.

In the early 1970s, Deming became a feminist and came out as a lesbian. In 1975, she founded The Money for Women Fund (renamed as The Barbara Deming Memorial Fund after her death in 1984) to support the work of feminist artists. Today, the foundation is the oldest ongoing feminist granting agency – website.

“We learn best to listen to our own voices if we are listening at the same time to other women…whose stories, for all our differences, turn out, if we listen well, to be our stories also.”