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COLLECTION Identifier: MC 746: T-399

Records of That Takes Ovaries, 2002-2010


Posters, programs, photographs, correspondence, and memorabilia related to the book, play, and open-mic movement That Takes Ovaries.


  • Creation: 2002-2010

Language of Materials

Materials in English.

Access Restrictions:

Access. Most of the collection is open for research.

Book proposals and release forms are closed until January 1, 2096, as specified between Rivka Solomon and the Schlesinger Library.

An appointment is necessary to use any audiovisual material.

Conditions Governing Use

Copyright. Copyright in the papers created by Rivka Solomon is held by Rivka Solomon during her lifetime. Upon her death, her estate will retain copyright to the book, play, and name "That Takes Ovaries." Copyright in additional material created by Rivka Solomon transfers to President and Fellows of Harvard College for the Schlesinger Library upon her death.

Copyright in other papers in the collection may be held by their authors, or the authors' heirs or assigns.

Copying. Papers may be copied in accordance with the library's usual procedures.


2 linear feet ((2 cartons) plus 1 object, 2 audiotapes, 1 archived web site)

The collection consists largely of materials created for That Takes Ovaries (TTO) open-mic events, including flyers, posters, programs, correspondence, and evaluations/reports. Also included are public relations packets, clippings, That Takes Ovaries memorabilia, a draft of Solomon's book proposal, correspondence, notes, and participant release forms. Manuscripts and transcripts of participants' "brazen act" stories are included, some from adults and others from teens and young girls taking part in readings or after-school programs.

The collection also contains two audiotapes. One contains an interview between founder Rivka Solomon and Jordan Rich of WBZ News Radio 1030 on The Jordan Rich Show from July 2004. In the interview, Solomon discusses her book, the organization, and several prominent women's rights issues including sexual slavery and female genital mutilation. The second audiotape is a recording of the first That Takes Ovaries open-mic event, which took place on March 21, 1999. The recording includes an introduction by Solomon, several shared stories from open-mic participants, and other discussion. That Take Ovaries's web site is being captured periodically as part of Schlesinger Library's web archiving program.

The records of That Takes Ovaries were processed as part of the Schlesinger Library's Experimental Archives Project. Some items containing identifying personal information have been redacted, but the rest of the content has been left completely intact. Every item in the collection has been digitized and made available to users through Flickr. After the collection was digitized, the material was grouped together using tags in Flickr. Newspapers and magazines were removed from their original locations and grouped together in Carton 2. The Records of That Take Ovaries's collection page in Flickr includes a short introductory video recorded by the Experimental Archives Project digitization assistant.


"That Takes Ovaries" (TTO) is a non-profit organization dedicated to women's rights and empowerment, founded by activist Rivka Solomon. The organization got its start in 2002, when Solomon edited and published the book, That Takes Ovaries: Bold Women and Their Brazen Acts, which collected stories from 64 women about moments of bravery in their lives. After the book's publication, Solomon collaborated with Bobbi Ausubel to create a play under the That Takes Ovaries name. Two versions were eventually produced, one geared towards adults and one tailored to teens and young girls. Both plays share modified versions of stories from the That Takes Ovaries: Bold Women and Their Brazen Acts book and can be performed as full productions or staged readings. Local productions started in Solomon's native Massachusetts and expanded to community theaters, schools, and college campuses across the country.

That Takes Ovaries is perhaps most widely recognized, however, as an open-mic movement. Since 2002, over 1000 That Takes Ovaries open-mic events have been held in the United States and across the globe in countries like Australia, India, Thailand, and Kenya. That Takes Ovaries open-mic events are traditionally organized to raise funds or awareness for women's issues and usually consist of dramatic readings from Solomon's book followed by the open-mic portion where women can share stories of their own significant moments. Men are also encouraged to speak about women who have impacted their lives, and every participant is traditionally given a gold foil-wrapped candy known as the "Golden Ovary Award." That Takes Ovaries events are independently planned by individuals or organizations and have been held in homes, coffee houses, schools, and conferences. While Solomon has often led or appeared at That Takes Ovaries open-mic events, the organization provides registration materials and information packets so that any interested parties can organize an event for themselves. That Takes Ovaries stage productions and open-mic events continue to occur across the nation as well as internationally, with Solomon leading workshops, coordinating global fundraising and organizing efforts, and representing That Takes Ovaries to local and international press.

Physical Location

Collection stored off site: researchers must request access 36 hours before use.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Accession numbers: 2011-M61; 2011-M214

The records of That Takes Ovaries were given to the Schlesinger Library by Rivka Solomon between March and November 2011.

Processing Information

Processed: February 2013

By: Jaimie Fritz, with assistance from Cat Lea Holbrook.

Updated with additional description: May 2020

By: Cat Lea Holbrook.

The Schlesinger Library attempts to provide a basic level of preservation and access for all collections, and does more extensive processing of higher priority collections as time and resources permit.  Finding aids may be updated periodically to account for new acquisitions to the collection and/or revisions in arrangement and description.

That Takes Ovaries (Organization). Records of That Takes Ovaries, 2002-2010: A Finding Aid
Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America
Language of description
Processing of this collection was made possible by the Zetlin Sisters Fund and the Jane Rainie Opel '50 Fund.

Repository Details

Part of the Schlesinger Library, Radcliffe Institute Repository

The preeminent research library on the history of women in the United States, the Schlesinger Library documents women's lives from the past and present for the future. In addition to its traditional strengths in the history of feminisms, women’s health, and women’s activism, the Schlesinger collections document the intersectional workings of race and ethnicity, gender, sexuality, and class in American history.

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