The RFC at 25 and Ethel Rosenberg at 100: a new blog series

If she were still living, my grandmother, Ethel Rosenberg, would turn 100 on September 28th of this year. The same month will also mark the 25th anniversary of the Rosenberg Fund for Children.  My Executive Director’s Report in the spring 2015 issue of our newsletter explores how the RFC plans to honor these milestones in a variety of ways as 2015 unfolds, while reflecting on how much has changed and what has remained constant at the RFC over our first quarter century.

Ethel at 100 (part 1): Ethel in the Kitchen

(Part 1 of the The RFC at 25 and Ethel Rosenberg at 100 series)

What was the cultural context of Ethel’s trial and execution? The era of the 1950's was captivated by the idea of the housewife in her kitchen. This image was used to sell a multitude of products, to remind women of their proper place, and to reassure the war-weary populace that everything was back to normal and “cooking” again.

Ethel at 100 (part 2): Communists in the Kitchen

(Part 2 of the The RFC at 25 and Ethel Rosenberg at 100 series)

The first blog in this series explored the public response to the press conference my grandmother, Ethel Rosenberg, held in her kitchen in support of her husband, Julius Rosenberg, after his arrest in 1950. As I mentioned in my previous blog, an image of Ethel from that day is the centerpiece of "Unknown Secrets," a collage by Martha Rosler.* Numerous atomic images and anti-communists “frame” or surround Ethel in Rosler’s artwork.

Ethel at 100 (part 3): "The Ideal Woman" - Ethel Rosenberg and Women’s Magazines

This is my third blog in a series which uses "Unknown Secrets," a collage by Martha Rosler*, as an organizing principle to explore how the popular press, the prosecution, the defense, supporters, politicians, and the highly charged political and cultural climate influenced how people perceived my grandmother, Ethel Rosenberg.

Ethel at 100 (part 4): Strong Woman/Weak Man?

This is my fourth blog in a series which uses "Unknown Secrets," a collage by Martha Rosler, as an organizing principle to explore how the popular press, the prosecution, the defense, supporters, politicians, and the highly charged political and cultural climate influenced how people perceived my grandmother, Ethel Rosenberg, then and now.

Ethel at 100 (part 5): Anti-Semitism and the Rosenberg Case

This is my fifth blog in a series which uses "Unknown Secrets," a collage by Martha Rosler, as an organizing principle to explore how the popular press, the prosecution, the defense, supporters, politicians, and the highly charged political and cultural climate influenced how people perceived my grandmother, Ethel Rosenberg, then and now.

Ethel at 100 (part 6): Lessons for Supporting the Children of Today's Targeted Activists

This is the sixth and final blog in this series which uses "Unknown Secrets," a collage by Martha Rosler*, as an organizing principle to explore how the popular press, the prosecution, the defense, supporters, anti-Semitism, politicians, and the highly charged political and cultural climate influenced how people perceived my grandmother, Ethel Rosenberg, then and now.

One Year Ago Today

On September 28, 2015 (which would have been my grandmother’s 100th birthday) Members of the New York City Council issued a proclamation which declared the U.S. government, “wrongfully executed Ethel Rosenberg.” The proclamation concluded, “now therefore BE IT KNOWN: That we, the undersigned Members of the New York City Council, honor the life and memory of Ethel Rosenberg in observance of the 100th anniversary of her birth.”