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There are certain names that always pop up when we talk about the women who kickstarted the women's liberation movement.Front-line leaders like Gloria Steinem, Dorothy Pitman Hughes, NOW founder, and author Betty Friedan — the list of ladies who made major contributions is long.This was nothing short of radical in the 1960s and '70s.She also encouraged her girls to not just get a job while they wait for a ring, but to enter the workplace and build a career — to find their own success and security before settling down.In fact, she struck a divisive, Pucci-clad chord of that time: Rather than demand equality or systemic change, Gurley Brown showed women how to leverage their sexuality to get what they wanted, first with her groundbreaking 1962 guidebook, magazine during her 32 years as editor-in-chief.Gurley Brown got her start as a copywriter in Los Angeles, where she rose up the ranks at agencies and made her own small fortune before marrying Hollywood producer David Brown at the age of 37.It was only up from there: Brown encouraged her to write — her first publishing job ever.
But she also snuck other, more progressive messages into the pages.
She advocated for reproductive freedoms, including birth control and abortion, while also encouraging women to enjoy sex, freely and for fun.
But one pioneer often gets left off: Helen Gurley Brown.
Despite the fact that Gurley Brown — an accomplished author, publisher, and business gal-about-town — was one of the most successful women of her era, she still doesn't tend to show up in the feminist canon.
She was one of the very first voices saying that women can have it all.
"She was talking about it in the '60s," says Brooke Hauser, author of which hits shelves April 19.