Marilyn Salzman Webb is an American author, activist, professor and journalist. She holds a PhD in educational psychology from the University of Chicago.[1][2]

Webb pursued her undergraduate education at Brandeis University, graduating with a BA in 1964. Later she studied journalism at Columbia University and completed her MS degree in 1981.[3] She had begun studies for her PhD in educational psychology at the University of Chicago in 1964, but abandoned her studies there with a master's degree in 1967 after allegedly being the victim of sexual harassment and assault by professors she had asked to serve on her dissertation committee.[1] Fifty years later, she contacted administrators and re-enrolled as a doctoral candidate, graduating with her PhD in 2019.[2]

After departing Chicago in 1967, she became an activist in the New Left, joining the Students for a Democratic Society. Facing harassment and chauvinism from the men within the leftist movement, notably including an incident where she and other women were booed off a protest stage, her activist focus shifted to second-wave feminism. In this period she co-founded the DC Women’s Liberation group’s governing structure, called a Magic Quilt.[4][5][6][7] In 1970 she co-founded off our backs, a radical feminist periodical that continued publishing until 2008.[8]

Years of research as an investigative journalist culminated in her book The Good Death, published in 1997, on medical and legal controversies surrounding end-of-life care in the US.[9]

In 2001, she founded the journalism program at Knox College; she holds the title Distinguished Professor Emerita of Journalism.[10][3] She had previously founded the women's studies program at Goddard College and taught in the journalism program at Columbia University.[2]

In 2009, Webb ran for mayor of Galesburg, Illinois.[11]

Webb is featured in the documentary She's Beautiful When She's Angry.[12][6][13]


  1. ^ a b Kristof, Nicholas (2019-05-25). "It's Taken 5 Decades to Get the Ph.D. Her Abusive Professor Denied Her". The New York Times. Retrieved 2020-04-04.
  2. ^ a b c Wang, Jack (2019-05-13). "Marilyn Webb comes full circle to complete PhD degree". University of Chicago. Retrieved 2020-04-04.
  3. ^ a b "Marilyn Webb". Knox College. Archived from the original on 2018-06-12. Retrieved 2020-04-04.
  4. ^ "U.S. Feminism, 1968 and Mediated Collective Intellectuality". Retrieved 2020-04-20.
  5. ^ "On Shulamith Firestone, Part One". n+1. Retrieved 2020-04-04.[dead link]
  6. ^ a b Burr, Ty (2015-02-26). "In 'She's Beautiful,' women fighting their battles". Boston Globe→. Retrieved 2020-04-04.
  7. ^ Dore, Mary (2014). She's beautiful when she's angry. Music Box films.
  8. ^ Brownmiller, Susan (1999). In our time: memoir of a revolution. Dial Press. ISBN 9780385314862.
  9. ^ Webb, Marilyn (1997). The good death: the new American search to reshape the end of life. ISBN 9780553095555.
  10. ^ "Faculty - Journalism". Knox College. Retrieved 2020-04-04.
  11. ^ Mouzakitis, Chris Z. (2009-03-11). "Nine candidates in race for mayor". Galesburg Register-Mail. Retrieved 2020-04-04.
  12. ^ By Dani McClainTwitter January 16, 2015 (2015-01-16). "'She's Beautiful When She's Angry' Reveals the Radical Ordinary Women of 1960s Feminism". The Nation. Retrieved 2020-04-20.
  13. ^ "The Team — She's Beautiful When She's Angry". Retrieved 2017-05-12.