Posters from Women’s March and March for Life, 2017
Following the 2017 presidential inauguration of Donald Trump, women all over the world took to the streets to protest his campaign’s positions on, among many other issues, women’s rights, human rights, and reproductive rights. Thought to be the largest protest in US history, the Women’s March took place on January 21, 2017. Approximately 500,000 marchers filled the streets of Washington, DC, with hundreds of thousands more participating throughout the world. They carried signs in support of issues as far ranging as immigration reform, health-care access, and minority rights. The Library collected signs after the marches in Washington and Boston, most of which are handmade posters designed to be carried or held up on sticks. They are passionate, provocative, and often darkly humorous.
Six days later, on January 27, the annual March for Life was held in Washington to protest the 44th anniversary of the Supreme Court’s Roe v. Wade decision. With the incoming administration promising a conservative stance on reproductive rights, marchers again used passion, provocation, and a sense of humor to make their signs stand out from the crowd. The signs collected from this protest—again, many of them handmade—support a range of pro-life issues, including overturning current abortion law and repealing capital punishment.
Posters and photographs of the Women’s March, Washington, DC, and Boston, January 21, 2017, various photographers, Women’s March Collection; Posters of the March for Life, Washington, DC, January 27, 2017, March for Life Collection
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Read about the 2016 panel discussion held at the Radcliffe Institute, "Righting the Record: Conservatism and the Archives" and view video of the event: