Thursday, October 29, 2020

WINNER! THE ROAD UP Receives Audience Award at Chicago Int'l Film Festival


Audience Award Winner! From Siskel/Jacobs Productions (No Small Matter, Louder Than a Bomb), THE ROAD UP has received the Audience Award for Best Documentary at the 56th Chicago International Film Festival!
Following its acclaimed world premiere in Chicago, the inspiring new documentary about a job training program and the participants finding their path forward in life heads to additional film festivals through the end of the year. Watch the trailer.


A film by Greg Jacobs & Jon Siskel
93 minutes / English / USA / Not Rated
Press Kit // Film Stills

"A stirring Chicago documentary..."
Chicago Tribune
"An essential piece of viewing."
Third Coast Review

Chicago International Film Festival // Official Selection
St. Louis International Film Festival // Official Selection
Hamptons Doc Fest // Official Selection 

The Road Up follows four participants in Cara, a Chicago job-training program, as they struggle to find the path from rock bottom to stable employment. Throughout, they are guided, goaded, and challenged by their impassioned mentor, Mr. Jesse, whose own complicated past compels him to help others find hope in the face of poverty, addiction, homelessness, and trauma. Taken together, their stories create a powerful mosaic of the struggles that millions of Americans face every day in a precarious and unforgiving economy—the daunting and often interconnected challenges that prevent so many from joining the economic mainstream. Because when everything behind you is wreckage, and everything in front is an obstacle, how do you find the road up?

Directed by Greg Jacobs, Jon Siskel
Produced by Rachel Pickelny
Co-Produced by Amy Ostrander
Cinematography by Stephan Mazurek
Edited by John Farbrother
Original Music by Joshua Abrams


Copyright © 2020 Bright Iris Film Co., All rights reserved.

Women & Children First: This November, VOTE! Also, Margaret Atwood, Terry Tempest Williams & Celebrate People's History!


November 2020
Dear Friends of Women & Children First!

First of all, VOTE.

Our sentiments are summed up by adrienne maree brown (author of Pleasure Activism), who recently Tweeted:

“I am so furious about how the president is killing us. and how it is still discussed like it’s electoral, partisan differences instead of fascism/terrorism. the only spell I’m casting these days is the truth: this is not an election year, it’s a genocide intervention era.”

*Artwork from Nikki McClure 2020 Calendar: November*
Find Nikki McClure's 2021 Calendar and many other
popular planners and wall calendars in-store or on the
Gifts & Calendars List on our website
Updated Guidelines for Supporting W&CF
We know you're tired. So are we. But the pandemic is far from over. We wish you could meet up with dearly missed friends at the bookstore and spend hours wandering our stacks. We wish you could have story time with Miss Linda or just with you and your toddler cross-legged on our colorful carpet. But the best way we can help slow the spread is to remember that these things aren't possible right now. In that spirit, we ask that you:

  • Limit your time in the store to active shopping.

  • Only come with folks you're quarantining with - while we love our reputation as a meeting place for friends, it's just not safe right now!

  • No groups larger than 3 people.

  • Once you've checked out, head out!

  • Order from us online and write "CONTACTLESS PICKUP or CURBSIDE" in the order comments at checkout to pick up your order in the parking lot behind the bookstore. Contactless pickup is available Mondays and Thursdays from 1 to 5 p.m. and Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

  • When you're browsing our website, consider prioritizing titles that say "On Our Shelves Now" below the box that says "Add to Cart." Selecting a book that we have on hand is a way to experience W&CF's thoughtful, feminist curation while shopping from home. AND the process is faster! We really love to sell the books we already have!

  • And, of course, you must wear a mask that covers your nose and mouth. Bandanas and gaiters are not sufficient. Don't worry, we have free disposable masks at the door if you need one!

  • We limit our capacity to 12 people in the store at a time. If there's a wait, please keep your distance as you queue outside. If it's too cold and you don't want to wait (we get it), we recommend ordering online and requesting CONTACTLESS PICKUP.

Thank you everyone for your patience, kindness, and support during this anxious time. We are putting all of our energy towards a Biden/Harris administration emerging victorious by the time we send our next e-newsletter--and a clearer, more hopeful, path ahead.

With love & gratitude,

An Evening with Margaret Atwood
Women & Children First, in collaboration with the Chicago Humanities Festival, present the one and only Margaret Atwood! Atwood's forthcoming poetry collection Dearly is an introspective and intimate reflection on love, loss, and the passage of time. Come hear the singular voice and mind of Margaret Atwood at play, reflecting on the role of writing in helping us to understand our past and prepare for the future. BUY TICKETS!
Upcoming Events
Tue, Nov 10, 2020 6:00 PM CST
Virtual Launch: HOW TO PACK FOR THE END OF THE WORLD by Michelle Falkoff
For this event, Michelle Falkoff will be in conversation with Rachel DeWoskin.

If you knew the world was going to end tomorrow, what would you do? This is the question that haunts Amina as she watches new and horrible stories of discord and crisis flash across the news every day. But when she starts at prestigious Gardner Academy, Amina finds a group of like-minded peers to join forces with—fast friends who dedicate their year to learning survival skills from each other, before it’s too late.

Wed, Nov 11, 2020 7:00 PM CST
Virtual Book Launch: THE GROUP by Christie Tate
For this event, Christie Tate will be in conversation with Jeannie Vanasco!

The refreshingly original debut memoir of a guarded, over-achieving, self-lacerating young lawyer who reluctantly agrees to get psychologically and emotionally naked in a room of six complete strangers—her psychotherapy group—and in turn finds human connection, and herself.

We're honored to partner with our friends at Pilsen Community Books for a virtual panel discussion in honor of Celebrate People's History!: The Poster Book of Resistance and Revolution. For this event, we'll be joined by contributors Nicole Marroquin, Damon Locks, Monica Trinidad, and Josh MacPhee.

Mon, Nov 16, 2020 7:00 PM CST
Virtual Author Conversation: Paola Ramos & Cecile Richards
For this event, Paola will be joined in conversation by Cecile Richards

Young Latinos across the United States are redefining their identities, pushing boundaries, and awakening politically in powerful and surprising ways. Many of them—Afrolatino, indigenous, Muslim, queer, and undocumented, living in large cities and small towns—are voices who have been chronically overlooked in how the diverse population of almost sixty million Latinos in the U.S. has been represented. No longer. 

Thu, Nov 19, 2020 7:00 PM CST
Virtual Author Reading: EROSION by Terry Tempest Williams
For this event, Terry Tempest Williams will be in conversation with Donna Seaman.

We know the elements of erosion: wind, water, and time. They have shaped the spectacular physical landscape of our nation. Here, Williams bravely and brilliantly explores the many forms of erosion we face: of democracy, science, compassion, and trust. 

Small Business Saturday

Independent bookstores are permanently closing across the country at a rate of one per week. Meanwhile Amazon doubled its net profit this year.

November 28 is Small Business Saturday. Any other year we would throw a party with delicious treats from Sauce and Bread Kitchen, live music, and perhaps a special Story Time. We are furious that, due to the Trump administration's reckless inaction, we still can't celebrate safely together and soulless giants like Amazon are profiting from this catastrophe. This year, we urge our community members to make a list of the businesses that you hope will survive this hellscape and then do your part to make sure that they do. Beyond just our feminist bookstore, please devote SBS to supporting all the small businesses you cherish. In our neighborhood, our booksellers recommend starting your holiday shopping with our friends at Early to Bed, Five Elements Home, or Rattleback Records and ordering take-out from Bettie Lou's or First Slice Pie Cafe. (Here's a complete list of small businesses in Andersonville.)

Where we spend our money in 2020 determines the communities we find ourselves in come 2021.
Thu, Dec 3, 2020 7:00 PM CST
Virtual Author Conversation: Halley Sutton & Layne Fargo
Join us for a virtual author reading and conversation with Halley Sutton and Layne Fargo, discussing their new thrillers about women who have had enough of men behaving badly and are taking matters into their own hands.

Fri, Dec 4, 2020 7:00 PM CST
The Freezer Door: Mattilda Bernstein Sycamore with T Fleischmann
The Freezer Door records the ebb and flow of desire in daily life. Crossing through loneliness in search of communal pleasure in Seattle, Sycamore exposes the failure and persistence of queer dreams, the hypocritical allure of gay male sexual culture, and the stranglehold of the suburban imagination over city life. 

Book Groups

Our Feminist Book Group and Social Justice Book Group are on hiatus. All of our other Book Groups are continuing to meet via Zoom. Email each Book Group leader for details!
Holiday Gift Guide

In case you missed it, check out Our Holiday Gift Guide for the year!

Trans Day of Remembrance

Our Friends at the Chicago Therapy Collective invite transgender musicians, dancers, comics, poets, and other creatives to the virtual stage to showcase your talent this Transgender Day of Remembrance.
W&CF 40th Anniversary Tee

Our special tees designed by Molly Costello make great holiday gifts!

Monday - Closed except for Curbside Pickup
Tuesday through Friday - Noon to 6 p.m.
Saturday & Sunday - 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Curbside pickup:
Monday & Thursday - 1 to 5 p.m.
Saturday - 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

5233 N Clark St
Chicago, IL 60640