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Imagining Hillary's Clinton Life If She Never Married Bill

Maggie Hallahan
Wikimedia Commons
Former First Lady Hillary Rodham Clinton at the 1995 NGO Forum on Women and the U.N. Fourth World Conference on Women

Hillary Clinton has spent a lot of time in the spotlight. We know her as a First Lady, a U.S. Senator from New York, President Obama's Secretary of State, a candidate in the 2016 presidential election, and as the wife of former President Bill Clinton. 

Yet most everything we know about Hillary as an individual separate from Bill has been filtered through the media, through President Trump's Twitter feed, and through the many conspiracy theories linked to her name. 

But after all the years of Hillary at Bill's side and after her loss in the 2016 election, didn't you wonder how Hillary Clinton's life might have been different if she never married Bill? Would she have broken the "glass ceiling" if she hadn't been married to Bill?

We talk to a writer who imagined Hillary's life without Bill. 


  • Curtis Sittenfeld is the author of a collection of short stories, You Think It, I’ll Say It, as well as six novels, including Prep and Eligible. Her non-fiction has appeared in The New York Times, The Atlantic, and NPR’s This American Life, among others. Her new novel is Rodham.

Join the conversation on Facebook and Twitter. 

Colin McEnroe and Cat Pastor contributed to this show. 

Betsy started as an intern at WNPR in 2011 after earning a Master's Degree in American and Museum Studies from Trinity College. She served as the Senior Producer for 'The Colin McEnroe Show' for several years before stepping down in 2021 and returning to her previous career as a registered nurse. She still produces shows with Colin and the team when her schedule allows.
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