Praise for The Secret Life of Lady Liberty by Robert R. Hieronimus, Ph.D., and Laura E. Cortner

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slll-coversThe Secret Life of Lady Liberty ranges through history, biology, mythology, and politics to investigate the meaning–and the power–of the Statue of Liberty–enjoyable to read, stimulating, and sometimes inspiring.”

Elaine Pagels, Ph.D., Harrington Spear Paine Foundation Professor of Religion, Princeton University and author of The Gnostic Gospels

“This book is an eye opener! Much of our history has been edited out of what we’ve been taught, giving us a distorted view not only of our past but of the possibilities for our future. By revealing how the power to give and nurture life symbolized by female figures inspired many of our democratic ideals, this wonderful book enlightens and empowers us at this critical time when we urgently need new ways of thinking about our world.”

Riane Eisler, author of The Chalice and the Blade, Sacred Pleasure, and The Real Wealth of Nations

“The words on the base: ‘Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free…’ reflect indigenous and feminine values of nurturing, caretaking, welcoming; ‘I lift my torch…’ a symbol of bringing light and consciousness. I marvel at the weave, depth, coverage, and yet readability of this very well-researched book. How wonderful it would be to have a couple of its chapters excerpted into a text for American history, a high school required course.”

Jean Shinoda Bolen, M.D., author of The Millionth Circle, Urgent Message From Mother, and Goddesses in Everywoman

“Thank you so much for sending me a copy of your book The Secret Life of Lady Liberty. I look forward to learning more about the iconic symbol of our nation. Your book looks beautiful, filled with fascinating pictures and historical detail. Many thanks for sending it to me.”

U.S. Representative Carolyn B. Maloney

“I could not agree more with the premise of this well-written book. I truly believe that more women in positions of power would do much to alter the political landscape for the good. We men seemed to have messed things up…. let’s give the ladies a chance.”

Graham Nash, of Crosby, Stills and Nash

The Secret Life of Lady Liberty is a rich, thoughtful and fascinating excursion into many of the concepts, ideas and ideologies that have influenced thoughts of freedom throughout humanity. It examines how we have struggled with various kinds of freedom and have been forced to weigh them against other values. This work of Hieronimus and Cortner is truly a cultural tour de force.”

Barry Moreno, Historian, Statue of Liberty National Monument

“No other figure today exemplifies patriotic esotericism more than Robert Hieronimus – and in this historical feast of a book he and his longtime collaborator Laura Cortner lay out a vision of the meaning, myth, and purpose behind America’s most iconic symbol. The authors sweep away conspiracism and in its place leave us with a resplendent vision of the centrality of Lady Liberty in our inner life and ideals as one people united.”

Mitch Horowitz, PEN Award-winning author of Occult America and One Simple Idea: How Positive Thinking Reshaped Modern Life

“A feminist and multi-ethnic history of the Statue of Liberty is way overdue. This account, which sparkles with insights, evokes the work of Katya Miller on the statue atop the U.S. Capitol dome. Both histories help complete the record. This work, which provides a new lens on our history, is a unique history of rediscovery that I hope will re-confirm our nation’s responsibility to foster freedom for all peoples (resisting patriarchy, assisting peace), in the tradition of the Statue of Liberty as a symbol for empowerment.”

Bruce E. Johansen, Ph.D., professor of Communication and Native American Studies, University of Nebraska at Omaha

The Secret Life of Lady Liberty: Goddess in the New World is going to be an interesting book to examine because it shows how Lady Liberty has ties to Native American spiritual traditions, the Earth Mother, and Roman goddesses. I really enjoyed it very much. Let’s say a prayer for the Statue of Liberty and what it means to solve all these problems.”

Shirley MacLaine, Academy Award winner, Emmy Award winner, AFI Life Achievement Award, and Kennedy Center Honoree for her lifetime contributions to American culture through the performing arts, and host of the radio program “Independent Expressions” where she made these statements.

“As the daughter of a Clan Mother, a true matriarch and descendant of those intrepid women leaders of the famed Iroquois Confederacy, I deeply appreciate the work of Hieronimus and Cortner in bringing to light the central role of those we call ‘lifegivers.’ It was here, in the heart of the world’s oldest united nations, that women were acknowledged as having the inherent right to assert their power as caretakers of their communities. For those around the world seeking the source of feminism, life, liberty and justice for all, I highly recommend The Secret Life of Lady Liberty.”

Joanne Shenandoah, Ph.D., Haudenosaunee (Six Nations Iroquois Confederacy), and Grammy award winning singer

“There are many books on women’s struggle for equality, but most of them ignore the actual roots of this worldwide movement. Hieronimus and Cortner set the record straight by tracing its origins across many nations, many peoples with particular emphasis on indigenous North American societies. This is a remarkable story told with style, humor and keen insights based upon exceptional scholarship. A new pillar in the study of the struggle for women’s rights.”

Douglas George-Kanentiio, Akwesasne Mohawk, vice-president Hiawatha Institute for Indigenous Knowledge

“This powerful and timely portrayal of Lady Liberty includes an exploration of the artistic, cultural, and historical contexts that have informed this cultural icon. Along the way, the authors delve into much women’s history and “exhume” long buried feminists and feminist concepts such as Republican Motherhood as women created a political role for themselves prior to woman suffrage. It also depicts how ‘The Lady’ was used as an icon in the movement for the vote. The book packs a great deal of political punch and history while explaining the symbolism of women’s role in our political life — past and present — missing from even our higher education today.”

Edith P. Mayo, curator emeritus in Political and Women’s History, National Museum of American History, Smithsonian Institution

“The Statue of Liberty isn’t just a statue. It represents many things from the past, and over time it has evolved to represent much more. Among the female elements of this enigmatic Statue, as expressed in The Secret Life of Lady Liberty: Goddess in the New World, are the earth-bound respect, fondness, and acknowledgement for Iakonkwe (womankind) that dwells within traditional Haudenosaunee (Iroquois) culture.”

John Kahionhes Fadden, cofounded the Six Nations Indian Museum

“An eye-opening treasure of the history of America’s greatest icon. This must read provides an enlightening understanding and a new appreciation of the concept of Liberty.”

Steven Sora, author of The Lost Treasure of the Knights Templar

“Goddesses have been neglected in contemporary accounts of both historical and mythological explorers, pioneers, and ‘heroic journeyers.’ The Secret Life of Lady Liberty takes an important step in reversing this imbalance, pointing out that the goddess traditions need to be examined and revised for what they can teach us in this age of male domination and the exploitation of Nature. By revisioning the Statue of Liberty as ‘America’s Goddess,’ Robert Hieronimus and Laura Cortner hope to reinforce female empowerment and egalitarian partnerships. Filled with fascinating historical facts and mythological sagas, their work points the way toward an extension of the American Revolution to social and spiritual changes that are crucially needed in the 21st century. This book is rooted in the past but, like the torch of Lady Liberty itself, is a beacon meant to illuminate the future.

Stanley Krippner, Ph.D., coauthor of Personal Mythology

“This sweeping encyclopedic study of the Statue of Liberty includes a rich collection of rare historical and modern images. Hymning the male/female polarity on which Creation is based, this book issues a clarion call for balance. May the power of this iconographic symbol of the sacred and optimistic principles underlying the American Experiment continue to triumph over cynicism and authoritarianism.”

James Wasserman, author of Divine Warriors and The Temple of Solomon

“A brilliant and extraordinary look into an important part of America’s history that’s surprising, inspiring, and offers tremendous hope.

Thom Hartmann, author and progressive national and internationally syndicated talkshow host

“Who would have imagined that you could draw our country’s entire history through the iconic image of liberty gracing the New York harbor? That’s precisely what the authors do in this engaging and well-documented journey through the long-neglected outtakes of our past. The exploration of Native American and feminist history and values, combined with contemporary scientific research, lead us to envision a sustainable future where liberty indeed prevails.

Sally Roesch Wagner, Ph.D., executive director of The Matilda Joslyn Gage Foundation, Inc. and author of Sisters in Spirit: Iroquois Influence on Early Feminists and A Time of Protest: Suffragists Challenge the Republic

“A brave and wonderful retelling of the hidden history of America. This fascinating, well-researched, thought-provoking book gives us great insight into the true history of the Statue of Liberty, our debt to Native Americans, the imbalance created by the suppression of the Sacred Feminine, and a true vision for a more enlightened future.”

Tricia McCannon, author of Return of the Divine Sophia

“Bob Hieronimus and Laura Cortner have created an exceptional work, in the tradition of Robert Graves’s The White Goddess (1948) and the Swiss archaeologist J.J. Bachofen’s Mother Right (1861). It is an extraordinarily free piece of writing on multiple levels, written in an engaging and readable style. In a world hidebound by convention, why not read this book and let this most talented public artist and his far-seeing co-author take you on a remarkable journey?

Joy Porter, Ph.D., professor of Indigenous History at the University of Hull in the U.K., and author of Native American Environmentalism

The Secret Life of Lady Liberty is an in depth, intriguing and insightful examination of mythic, spiritual, social justice, and political dimensions of Lady Liberty as Goddess of Freedom and Her connections with other iconic Divine Feminine forms in the USA and beyond.”

Selena Fox, senior minister and high priestess of Circle Sanctuary and founder of the Lady Liberty League

“This amazing book shines a fresh light on the history of not just Lady Liberty, but the whole American experience. The authors have generated an interesting hypothesis that resonates with my worldview of why women and their biology are both impactful, but also at times misunderstood.”

C. Sue Carter, Ph.D., director of The Kinsey Institute, Rudy professor of Biology, Indiana University, Bloomington

“This is an impressive study of the cultural politics of the Statue of Liberty, ranging from Roman Libertas and the emancipation of slaves to women in matrilineal cultures of North America. Along the way, the book dips into the varied iconography of Liberty in folk art and editorial cartoons; European perceptions of Indigenous women and Native origins of U.S. democracy; goddesses, allegorical female figures and Black Madonnas; slavery abolition and women’s suffrage; and imperial “manifest destiny.” The Mohawk art of John Kahionhes Fadden provides a potent counterpoint to Euro-American symbolism. There are some amazing stories in here, including the fact that the abolitionist and feminist Laboulaye’s conception for the statue originated at his 1865 party celebrating the Union victory and emancipation from slavery.”

Max Dashú, historian and founder of the Suppressed Histories Archives

“This book gives us important insights into the Native American, feminist and environmental aspects of climate change in the American past and future. It is a must read for concerned activists and scholars in the 21st Century.”

Donald A. Grinde, Jr., Ph.D., Professor of Transnational/American Studies, SUNY, Buffalo, and co-author of Examplar of Liberty

“This exquisite volume about ‘Lady Liberty’ brings the meaning of the Goddess into the 21st Century. It not only includes the history of this precious icon, it charts the many cultures from which she arises. I highly recommend this in-depth exploration.”

Justine Willis Toms, host of New Dimensions Radio, author of Small Pleasures: Finding Grace in a Chaotic World

“By putting a new lens on history, The Secret Life of Lady Liberty illuminates the roles that Native America and women played in the formulation of our country. Bravo to the public good and a balanced society! Bob Hieronimus and Laura Cortner have lit the torch, let’s read on!”

Katya Miller, United States Capitol Historical Society Fellow, and author of the forthcoming Beloved Freedom: The U.S. Capitol’s Top Secret

“This epoch-making book crowns six decades of important writings on the subject from many angles, all given due consideration, since Neumann’s The Great Mother. It is now realistic to say that the Goddess has returned. Some of the most enlightening and moving chapters describe the high status accorded to the feminine principle and women among the Native Americans. ‘Where are your women?’ was the potent question they asked the European invaders when negotiating a settlement. Where indeed. All the points the authors make are supported and illuminated by an amazing collection of illustrations.”

Ean Begg, Jungian analyst and author of The Cult of the Black Virgin

“There she’s been, hidden in plain sight. At long last, our American political Goddess’ story is finally being told – and not a moment too soon! May we embrace her wisdom and courage. May we let her show us the way!”

Rev. Karen Tate, author and radio show host of Voices of the Sacred Feminine

“History is vital to the fabric of this nation. It builds a bridge from the past to the future. The Secret Life of Lady Liberty is more than just a history lesson, but it colorfully tells the story of resilience and determination on the part of women. Its authors have constructed it masterfully! Courage comes through every page. It is a must read, not just for women but for all truth seekers!”

Janie Hendrix, Sister of Jimi Hendrix and CEO of Experience Hendrix

“The respect and literary elegance both authors bring to every subject make this work not only timely, but a necessary contribution to the magnificent roles of women to America and the world. It should light a flame of encouragement for women everywhere to take their rightfully recognized places and a long deserved recognition of those who have gone before and continuing to make the lives of all of us more meaningful.”

Joe Honick, International consultant to business, industry and government, and writer for a variety of media on matters dealing with political and public affairs

“A fascinating look into the stories that need to be told about America’s earliest days. The Statue of Liberty beckons to equality in all aspects.”

Steve Boone, Lovin’ Spoonful, Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Inductee Class of 2000, and descendant of Daniel Boone

“In the Secret Life of Lady Liberty Bob Hieronimus and Laura Cortner have opened locked doors to the past of the Americas, and put that past in a new context. This book will open your eyes to much that will not be found in the standard patriarchal paradigm of history, but is nonetheless true. The authors are part of an emerging new scholarship that is redefining, by incorporating previously disregarded facts, who we are and what we are about. This is an important book well worth your attention.”

Stephan A. Schwartz, author of The 8 Laws of Change

“Exciting and fascinating, this book contains bucket-loads of valuable information you won’t find collected anywhere else. It’s a treasure.”

John Astin, stage, film and television actor and director, voice artist, professor and Director of Theatre Arts and Studies at Johns Hopkins University

“Brilliant! Our Liberty- a surprising revolutionary view! Ladies, our nation’s symbols are about YOU! Long forgotten, the mysteries and myths from our nation’s turbulent early years come to life in detail , revealing Lady Liberty as our idealized image of calm nurturing feminine enlightenment. Her story is powerful and meaningful, and as brilliant as the torch she carries.”

Carolyn “Mountain Girl” Garcia, Merry Prankster and married Jerry Garcia

“OK, I was hoping for racier details of the Lady’s ‘secret life’….like, was she ever involved with Lady Justice? And is it true that ‘Sam’ (if that’s his real name) isn’t her legit uncle? Seriously, I’m really impressed at the extensive research that went into this book, and proud of my tiny contribution.”

Joel Pett, Pulitzer Prize winning cartoonist

The Secret life of Lady Liberty is a fascinating read about the history and symbology surrounding the Statue of Liberty. How this plays into ancient female mythologies and religion, all cloaked in the Divine Feminine. It reminds us of the importance of reembracing this concept of the forgotten feminine in our societies today — in the hope that its return will help restore a healthy balance to planet Earth. The Goddess of Liberty who represents the spirit of freedom I was reminded was symbolic for the student demonstrators in Tiananmen, where they created their own 30 foot statue. Having lived in Hong Kong in this period I remember the horror of this evening as hundreds of innocent souls were massacred in the square as they stood unified for freedom.”

Maryanne Bilham-Knight, Photographer

“Dr. Bob Hieronimus is the true Renaissance man. Congratulations on finishing this huge work. It looks great to me. Go for it. Spread the word.”

Jack Weatherford, Ph.D., former DeWitt Wallace Professor of anthropology at Macalester College in Minnesota and author of Indian Givers, Native Roots, and Genghis Khan and the Making of the Modern World

“What do Joan of Arc, feathers, the Black Madonna, climate change, the language of the birds, Paris, Yemonja, coins, Isis nursing Horus, Gnostics, women’s suffrage, Mary Magdalene, American folk art, League of the Iroquois, Laboulaye, state seals (and so much more) have in common? The Secret Life of Lady Liberty. This brilliantly researched book intertwines two major themes: the histories of female goddesses from Neolithic figures to the Greco-Roman goddess symbolizing “Libertas,” and the women’s movement for equality and freedom, still ongoing. These cross-currents over time, place, cultures, religions and politics are reflected in diverse images in architecture, fine, folk and the decorative arts, sculpture, even kitsch – spiritual and patriotic eye candy! A magnificent book, it is a wonderful reinforcement of American ideals — liberty and freedom for all — and a must for libraries.”

Nancy Jo Fox, ASID, ISCC, IFDA, Who’s Who in Interior Design in America, author of Liberties With Liberty: The Fascinating History of America’s Proudest Symbol

The Secret Life of Lady Liberty is the story behind how we have the Statue of Liberty in the New York harbor. It tells the intriguing back story of how it was envisioned, created, financed, and overcame opposition to be erected. The change in name from Lady Liberty to an “it”–an abstract idea is another layer of history and psychology, about religious opposition to the Sacred Feminine and to women. We know that indigenous peoples had lands taken from them; in the hidden history of the United States, we now also know that the principle of balance of powers was taken from the Iroquois Confederacy, a system of governance that inspired the framers of the constitution.”

Jean Shinoda Bolen, M.D., author of The Millionth Circle, Urgent Message From Mother, and Goddesses in Everywoman