Bette Midler reflects on her feminist beliefs

Bette Midler says she's always been a feminist.

The iconic singer-actress tells Variety she was raised to be independent. She recalls her father's advice: "You better learn to do something, because you’re not going to get married." And her mother would say, "What do you want to get married for?"

Accepting "you must learn to count on yourself [and] not be afraid to be alone" shaped Midler's perspective. And when she read The Feminine Mystique in the '60s, "It changed my life. I don’t think there’s anything wrong with being a housewife. I think all work is honorable. Being a mother is fantastic. But if you have a passion for something and a talent for something, you should be able to follow your bliss."

Friday, Bette Midler will be one of Variety’s 2019 Power of Women - New York honorees.

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