Democrat Rep. James Clyburn of South Carolina reflects with CNN's Soledad O'Brien on the changes in America over the last 50 years and what he hopes for the second term of the United States' first black president.
By Moni Basu, CNN
(CNN) – Dorothy Segal went to veterinary medicine school at a time when she was very much a minority. She remembers being one of two women who graduated in her class in 1943.
Now 96, Segal recalled what the dean of the Michigan State University veterinary school said to her at the time: "Go back to the kitchen."
Segal went on to have a successful practice, treating everything from birds to big cats in the circus.
They used to say treating animals was no job for a lady. So Segal never wore pants.
"I made myself feminine," she said.
Segal was a trailblazer for women in her profession. When she began practicing in 1944, there were about 55 women vets in America. She was part of the first real growth spurt in female vets, who multiplied after the 1972 Equal Employment Opportunity Act. FULL POST
By Annalyn Kurtz, CNNMoney
(CNN Money) - Forget the "mancession" or the "he-covery." Men suffered the biggest job losses in the financial crisis, and also gained the most post-recession jobs.
But now, men and women have equal footing in the recovery.
As of November, both genders have gained back half the jobs they lost in the financial crisis, according to Labor Department data.
The recession hit male-dominated industries like construction and manufacturing, far harder than female-dominated industries like health care and education. As a result, men lost 6.2 million jobs between early 2007 and 2010, accounting for two thirds of all the jobs lost in the crisis.
Men have since gained back 3.1 million, or roughly 50%, of all the jobs they lost. Their biggest gains have been in professional jobs, factories making long-lasting goods like autos and machinery, and retail.
Both layoffs and the recovery seem to have caught up with women later than men. By November, women gained a slight edge over men, recovering 53% of the 2.8 million jobs they lost during the financial crisis.
Their biggest gains have been in education and health care, and professional services.
By Moni Basu, CNN
(CNN) – Anna worked seven days a week as a nanny for the family of a Fortune 500 company executive. She lived with them in their 5th Avenue apartment in Midtown Manhattan. Her day began at 6 when the children woke up and didn't end until 10 at night when she put them to bed and cleaned the kitchen.
She cooked meals, did laundry and tended to the children's needs. She slept on the floor in between their beds. She did not have a single day off in 15 months.
She was hired because of the child development skills she learned as a teacher in her native Philippines. Yet she earned just $1.27 an hour.
Anna's story, documented in a groundbreaking statistical report on U.S. domestic workers released Tuesday, is not uncommon. It said Anna was part of a system of invisible workers - mostly women, mostly minorities and increasingly immigrant - who enable many Americans to function in their own lives.
By Tami Luhby @CNNMoney
NEW YORK (CNNMoney) - It doesn't take a million bucks to get into the top 1%.
In fact, it took a little less than $370,000 in adjusted gross income in 2010 to make it into this elite group, according to newly released data from the Internal Revenue Service. That's up slightly from the $352,000 the year before.
But on average, the top 1% earned $1.12 million, up from $980,000 the year before.
The top 1% have been in the spotlight since Occupy Wall Street protesters first began camping out in cities across the U.S. last fall. The presidential campaign also centered on the haves and have nots, with President Obama calling for tax increases on the rich and challenger Mitt Romney arguing that taxing the wealthy would hurt the economy.
This is the second in an occasional series on issues of race, identity and politics ahead of Election Day, including a look at the optics of politics, a white Southern Democrat fighting for survival and a civil rights icon registering voters.
By John Blake, CNN
(CNN) - A tall, caramel-complexioned man marched across the steps of the U.S. Capitol to be sworn into office as a jubilant crowd watched history being made.
The man was an African-American of mixed-race heritage, an eloquent speaker whose election was hailed as a reminder of how far America had come.
But the man who placed his hand on the Bible that winter day in Washington wasn't Barack Obama. He was Hiram Rhodes Revels, the first African-American elected to the U.S. Senate.
His election and that of many other African-Americans to public office triggered a white backlash that helped destroy Reconstruction, America’s first attempt to build an interracial democracy in the wake of the Civil War. FULL POST
By Rose Hoare, CNN
(CNN) - From Warhol's silkscreens of Marilyn Monroe to Picasso's nudes, it has generally been easier for women to be the subject of paintings than to have their own work exhibited.
In 1989, when New York feminist collective Guerrilla Girls began counting how many works in New York's Metropolitan Museum of Art were by women, less than 5% of the artists in its Modern section were female.
But the art world looks set to change its stubbly face, and shows increasing signs of recognition for the value and stature of leading female artists.
Half of the nominees for Britain's Turner Prize are women this year, as are three of the four photographers shortlisted for Canada's $50,000 Grange Prize, and at this month's Frieze Art Fair, two of the five artists commissioned to make site-specific works were women.
The chief curators of MoMA, the Whitney, the Met, the Guggenheim and the Centre Pompidou are all female, as are the directors of Tate Britain and the Uffizi Gallery. The world's biggest buyer of contemporary art, according to Art Newspaperis the Qatari royal family, whose purchases are directed by Sheikha Mayassa Al Thani.
"It is better than it has ever been for women at the emerging level," says one of the founders of Guerrilla Girls, Frida Kahlo. But, she warns, "when one travels up the art world ladder of success, there is a crushing glass ceiling. Women only get so far, especially at the level of economics."
Read the full story
By Blake Ellis, CNNMoney
New York (CNNMoney) - A year after graduating from college, women are earning thousands of dollars less per year than their male peers.
Women who worked full-time jobs one year after receiving their diplomas earned 82 cents for every dollar men earned. That's according to a report from the American Association of University Women, which analyzed data from a Department of Education survey of 15,000 graduates conducted in 2009, the most recent data available.
While men earned average salaries of $42,918, women earned $35,296 - a nearly $8,000 difference, the report found.
"You hear in the news that [millennial] women are now out-earning their male peers, but what we found in looking at those emerging from college is that there is still a gender pay gap," said Catherine Hill, director of research at AAUW.
Read the full story from CNNMoney
Editor’s note: In America follows the fight to win an essential voting bloc in Nevada, a battleground state with one of the fastest-growing Latino populations in the nation. Soledad O’Brien reports in “Latino in America: Courting Their Vote” on CNN TV at 8 p.m. ET Sunday.
By CNN Political Unit
(CNN) – A new CNN/ORC International poll released Friday finds Latino voters don't think the Republican Party has done a good job reaching out to minorities and the Democratic Party cares more about people like them, agree with them on important issues and can improve economic conditions.
Friday's release shows that only 33% of likely Latino voters think the GOP has done a good job reaching out to minorities compared to the 77% who think Democrats have done a good job.
The poll also indicates 69% of likely Latino voters believe the Democratic Party cares more about people like them while only 24% say the GOP cares more than the Democrats do.
The survey - taken entirely before Wednesday's first presidential debate in Denver - also shows 62% of Latinos think the Democratic Party can help to improve economic conditions. Only 32% think the Republican Party can better fix the economy.
Friday's survey comes after a CNN/ORC poll released Tuesday showed President Barack Obama retaining a significant lead over rival Mitt Romney in the key voting demographic–70% to Romney's 26%–matching the level of support he received from Latinos in 2008.
Editor’s note: In America follows the fight to win an essential voting bloc in Nevada, a battleground state with one of the fastest-growing Latino populations in the nation. Soledad O’Brien reports “Latino in America: Courting Their Vote” at 8 p.m. ET Sunday.
(CNN) – Marlene Monteolivo was a Democrat for many years, then a Republican. Now she's registered as a nonpartisan voter in Nevada who wants to support a candidate who will make the economy better.
The Colombia native, who works for a Las Vegas social services agency, says she's leaning toward GOP challenger Mitt Romney. She likes his business sensibilities.
Not surprisingly, Latinos nationwide put the economy as their top priority in a CNN/ORC International poll released Tuesday.
But there's a hiccup. And it's a big one called immigration.
It's the 200-pound anchor on the Republican message, say experts in Nevada politics.
Monteolivo doesn't like that Republicans blocked passage of the Dream Act, which would have created a pathway to citizenship for undocumented immigrants. She bristled at Romney's comment that 47% of Americans feel entitled to government aid. She took it to mean that Latinos, many of whom are not well off, are considered freeloaders.
Come November, Monteolivo says, her option might be to "vote for none of the above."
Romney and President Barack Obama are vying for the attention of 268,000 eligible Latino voters in Nevada, a critical bloc in a battleground state that is still reeling from the Great Recession. FULL POST
What defines you? Maybe it’s the shade of your skin, the place you grew up, the accent in your words, the make up of your family, the gender you were born with, the intimate relationships you chose to have or your generation? As the American identity changes we will be there to report it. In America is a venue for creative and timely sharing of news that explores who we are. Reach us at email@example.com.
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