Tactics used and encouraged by the National Organization for Women


This is a primary source used by the National Organization for Women in the Memphis Chapter. This document outlines tactics that will benefit the organization. It entails what tactics to use as well as what tactics should not be used. It states that these tactics will help build the organization and that tactics require imagination. When stating that the tactics would require imagination, I believe this providing room for radical ideas. It can be seen as the Memphis chapter of NOW giving their activists permission to think outside liberal ideals. It also states that tactics from a mass-based organization should flow from the principle that what you have is numbers and that they are used in order to get the enemy to react and then yourself. Radical feminism was prominent in the Memphis chapter of NOW although the National organization was mostly liberal. Tactics expressed in this document were used in radical protests that gave the activists of Memphis a voice they had not had before. The eighth tactic listed in the document states, “keep pressure on in a campaign. A new action every week. Pick new fights; keep on top of the issues. The risk of co-optation grows more from losing the initiative than it does from “impurity”.” This statement confirms the appearance of radical feminism in the Memphis chapter of NOW.


Betty Friedan


Mississippi Valley Collection. Memphis State University, National Organization for Women, Memphis Chapter. Mss66 Box #1 of 5


The University of Memphis Libraries


Digital Image © 2016, University of Memphis Libraries Preservation and Special Collections Department. All rights reserved.





Betty Friedan, “Tactics,” Making an Impact: The Lives of Tennessee Women, accessed October 21, 2020, https://umhist4851.omeka.net/items/show/104.

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