Get local news delivered straight to your phone
Support City Paper!
Unlike many women’s colleges, Bryn Mawr didn’t begin as a finishing school; it was designed to give upscale women access to the same classical education available to their brothers. That was a bold plan in 1885, but not as radical as the one that followed in the 1920s: the Bryn Mawr Summer School for Women Workers, a controversial attempt to cross class and racial barriers. Suzanne Bauman and Rita Heller’s The Women of Summer, made in 1986, uses footage of the summer school’s participants reuniting 50 years later to explore the program’s long-term effects and conjure the heady atmosphere of the period. Between songs by leftie folkies Holly Near and Ronnie Gilbert, the alumnae discuss their lives and such defining events as the trial of Sacco and Vanzetti, the Depression, and the New Deal. At noon at the National Archives Theater, 7th & Pennsylvania Avenue NW. Free. (202) 501-5000. (Mark Jenkins)