Life and Family

Suzy Post__History

Suzanne “Suzy” Wolff Post was born in the midst of the Great Depression in Louisville, Kentucky, on March 19,  1933.[1]  This year had historic significance because it was also the year Adolf Hitler became chancellor of Germany. [2]

Post was shown her expected place in life from a very early age.  She was the eldest of three children.  Her siblings were twins, Robert and Carol.  Suzy and her siblings were born about two and a half years apart.   Her parents were German Jewish, with no formal educations, but they were both highly active in the Louisville Jewish community.  Her father was a very patriarchal figure.  He would not allow Suzanne’s mother to work outside of the home.  The idea of domesticity being an expected part of life was conveyed to Suzy by her mother, both by example and through clearly spoken messages.  When Suzy expressed an interest in medical school at an early age, her mother informed her that this would never happen because she was both Jewish and female.[3]

Her childhood was spent in the 1940s, around the end of the World War II. Growing up in this time period exposed the child to certain, horrific ideas from an early age. What especially impacted her were the news reels of Jewish concentration camps shown in movie theatres.  Post attributes her early development of a social conscious to seeing the graphic images of holocaust victims. [4]

Eventually, Post fell into the pattern of domesticity.  Her first child was born at age 22.  Following this she had four other children in the next ten years.  Much of that time period of her life was dedicated to her role as mother and wife. [5]

Post’s relationship with her husband was not always ideal.  The couple first met at the early age of thirteen.  They married during Anne’s second year of college.  From the beginning, Post admits she was drawn to the man’s intellect as opposed to a great emotional connection.  The man had ambitions of being a labor lawyer, which attracted Suzy.  This attraction faded as Suzy dove whole-heartedly into activism.  He was highly unsupportive of her activism, so much so that when she was elected to the national board for the ACLU, he merely expressed disappointment in her new inability to stay at home.  Eventually Suzy stopped requesting the support or approval of her husband, not allowing anyone to stand in her way. As time progressed, she became emotionally detached from her husband.  In 1986, they divorced. [6]

[1] Kentucky: Kentucky Commission on Human Rights – Hall of Fame 2007.”Kentucky: Kentucky Commission on Human Rights – Home. Kentucky Commission on Human Rights, n.d. Web. 30 Jan. 2013. <http://kchr.ky.gov/hof/halloffame2007.htm?&pageOrder=0&selectedPic=10>.

[2] “Chronology 1933.” Indiana University. Indiana University Center for the Study of Global Change, n.d. Web. 1 May 2013. <http://www.indiana.edu/~league/1933.htm>.[3] http://205.204.134.47/civil_rights_mvt/pop.aspx?type=2&asset=10

[4] Timothy, Patrick McCarthy. 2009. Interview with suzy post. Journal for the Study of Radicalism 3, (1): 145-173, http://ezproxy.uky.edu/login?url=http://search.proquest.com/docview/213913050?accountid=11836 (accessed March 3, 2013).

[5] McCarthy, Timothy Patrick. 2009. Interview with suzy post. Journal for the Study of Radicalism 3, (1): 145-173, http://ezproxy.uky.edu/login?url=http://search.proquest.com/docview/213913050?accountid=11836 (accessed May 1, 2013).

[6] Post, Suzanne . Interview by Catherine Fosl. Tape recording interview. 24 June 1991.

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