A feminist awakening in India: By Justin Fitzherbert-Smith

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When Paula and I decided to move to India, I thought it would be just another in the long list of places we’ve happily experienced together. We have both been to multiple developing countries – she has been to India before and also worked in Afghanistan – and I expected New Delhi would be much like what I’ve already seen of the third world; busy, noisy, dirty and dysfunctional. What I didn’t expect is that the experience would become an object lesson in a contagious social disease: misogyny.

Of course, I was aware of India’s struggles with sexual violence, and Paula had told me about the time she slapped a tout in a market for grabbing her bottom. I was ready for this and, as a qualified urban planner, I was intellectually prepared for the ways in which women might be excluded from the public realm. But I did not anticipate that it would make me see my own relationship in a completely new light. Continue reading

Welcome to Monday! ~ 18th May 2015

IDAHOT-2015-meme6-150x150Happy IDAHO/IDAHOT/IDAHOBIT!

I’m sure the acronym will just keep growing and growing as we recognise more groups and individuals who fit into our welcoming embrace (I hope). But in the meantime, I hope you’re celebrating in some form and kicking all social phobias in the butt just a little more today.

This weeks links are different to other links. They’re different because I want your money so I’m dedicating this entire link love to getting it. I don’t want it for myself, I don’t even want it for feminaust. I want it for someone I’ve never met and yet believe really deserves it. It’s also not the last time I’ll ask for it and it’s not the last person I’ll ask for it for but for this time Diana still needs your support getting to World Council. To help illustrate why feminaust is so keen on this campaign I’m going to link you to a few old articles from the feminaust archives as well as articles written by others from other places about why World Council is so important to the development of incredible young activists and advocates, changemakers and troublemakers.

All the following articles were written by young feminausts who attended World Council 2011 in Zurich Switzerland and were inspired in some way by the events and activities they were included in there.

Women, Peace and Security.

Voting at World Council; Empowering or Confusing?

Waking up to your sexual and reproductive health and rights.

A love letter to Abigail Disney

One step closer to the post-patriarchy; redefining professionalism.

Cairo 678; Movie Review. Continue reading

Welcome to Monday! ~ 11th May 2015

18242_769025796549151_2554119384121623584_nHelllloooo feminausts! and Welcome to May! Firstly, big thanks to Scarlett who has been doing the first W2M of the month for the past four months (is that right Scarlett?) and has reduced my stress levels astonishingly while I was a busy little bee planning a big trip away. She is now taking on some more responsibilities and won’t have time to help me out anymore so if any of you lovely feminausts facies a stint as a guest Welcomer to Monday please get in touch. You just have to spend a little time showing us your favourite articles/images/events for the week before/after the Monday in question! So simple. So lovely.

Anyway, onto the link love for this week, due to yesterdays Mother’s Day there are a lot of articles about mums, motherhood etc. We like to keep it topical so please enjoy and as always, let me know if I missed something essential.

xxx

If you haven’t watched this TedTalk yet you should.

The genius of Amy Schumer.

Hilary Clinton uses Mother’s Day to talk about parental leave.

Your mum’s most unintentionally hilarious moments.

Family violence calls more people than wars.

Treasurer uses Mother’s Day to royally screw mothers.

Mona Eltahawy “All religions are obsessed with my vagina”

And if you haven’t donated to Diana’s appeal for support to attend YWCA World Council, please take this opportunity to do so. Like the old saying says, “every little bit helps” and even forgoing your coffee today or all week to donate $3 or $30 will make a huge difference for this truly inspirational young woman. I have cut and pasted the blurb from the campaign here:

Diana Ma’ahoro is a disability rights activist and member of YWCA Solomon Islands. She also happens to be one of the most inspiring, tenacious and ambitious leaders that I have ever met.

Diana was just 4 when she contracted tuberculosis meningitis, a life threatening, yet entirely preventable disease. With insufficient facilities to treat her condition in her home Province of Malaita, Diana was moved to Honiara’s National Referral Hospital where she spent the next seven years in rehabilitation. Diana was lucky to survive, but was left with permanent paralysis on her left side, which affects her speech and coordination.

But Diana has never been the kind of person to let her disability to stop her from doing what she wants!

Since attending the YWCA’s Rise Up! Young Women’s Leadership Workshop in 2010, Diana has become a known and respected disability rights activist in her country, speaking out on controversial issues, including violence against women with disabilities and the sexual and reproductive health and rights of women with disabilities.

In 2013 Diana’s work was recognised when she invited to participate in a month long leadership course in Oregon, USA with global NGO Mobility International USA. This experience was life changing for Diana who had the opportunity to meet and learn from women with disabilities all around the world.

Now Diana wants to take her activism global again but attending the World YWCA Council in Bangkok Thailand in October 2015. Diana will be sharing a room with social change rockstar Sylvia John, for whom we recently raised almost $3000USD to attend the same conference. Diana will contributing to her own fundraising by selling home made crafts at a local market stall she runs.

If you believe in the potential of young women to change the world, then donate to Diana’s campaign today!

Fourth Birthday Celebration Film

Hi feminausts.

We’re planning another low key birthday party film screening and are looking for suggestions for films to screen! Please comment with your favourite feminist film.

And if you don’t live in Melbourne and keep wishing we would have our parties somewhere else, please get in touch. We would love to celebrate all that is feminaust where you live too!

MsElouise

Welcome to Monday ~ 4th May, 2015.

Counting dead Aussie women: 34 thus far this year.

9% to 12% of those have been Aboriginal women, which is way above their 3% representation in the general population.

Inspired by Gay’s musings on the topic, Ruby Hamad expands on Australia’s lack of racial diversity in commercials.

Leisure time is a feminist issue. I know it certainly is for me. I hate cooking so I make sure I’ve got enough food to last me lunches and dinners on the days I work ’cause the last thing I want to do is come home and prepare food. On the work front, I’m really busy with three jobs (day job, freelancing, Outback Championship Wrestling) and I was recently offered at (paid!) internship but I had to turn it down because I’m already burning the candle at both ends. And that’s the reason I won’t have kids: I don’t want to be an angry, resentful mother like my own mother sometimes was because I don’t have enough time for myself and no one appreciates me. So in a nutshell: I can relate.

Women’s website The Hoopla has folded, while News Ltd. and MamaMia release new ones.

Junkee came up with some headline ideas for them in case they ever run out.

Disability is a feminist issue we’re just not paying enough attention to.

A bitch is an opinionated woman who’s not especially beautiful while doing it.

How the way we speak about Hillary Clinton may influence her presidential bid.

The men’s rights movement doesn’t help men at all.

Calling out racism is great, but we need to be mindful that we aren’t perpetuating stereotypes and speaking for minorities when we stand up for them.

Why are Aussies so shit at dating?

Australia’s outrage over Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran’s executions illustrates this country’s hypocrisy.

A Gay Old Time.

Bad Feminist and An Untamed State author Roxane Gay was in Australia in March, and Readings has a conversation with their staff members who went to see (hear?) her speak at The Wheeler Centre with Maxine Beneba Clarke.

Here she is, along with Jane Caro, talking sense into the other panelists on ABC’s The Drum.

Speaking with Margaret Throsby on ABC radio.

Junkee compiled all of Gay’s tweets about her observations of Australia and they are pretty on-point.

With Clementine Ford, Celeste Liddle, Tara Moss, Anita Sarkeesian and Germaine Greer at the All About Women festival talking about what it means to be a feminist. Some meaty stuff that often doesn’t get talked about at these kinds of events.

Shameless Self-Promotion Corner.

There’s nothing revolutionary or fantastical about 50 Shades of Grey: men abuse women in unequal relationships all the time.

Does Shonda Rhimes have a mistress problem?

Gender inequality and valuing abusive men who happen to be good at their jobs means World Wrestling Entertainment will never #GiveDivasaChance, the fan-driven hashtag that’s been dominating social media urging the biggest wrestling company in the world to give their female talent more air and wrestling time.

Animal welfare goes hand in hand with feminism, so I wrote a guide to making your beauty cabinet cruelty free.

Why are we obligated to celebrate people who take the well-traveled path?

Further to that, why are those who don’t take that path assumed gay?

The bonding ritual that is menstruation.

Some thoughts on Bruce Jenner.

Welcome to Monday! ~ 27th April 2015

Loving this that our British friends are up to.

Event with Anne Summers and Elizabeth Broderick.

Women in Silicone Valley rocking it!

First Dog on the Moon – ANZAC Day

Flowers of Hope

What about the war on women?

Writing While Female at this year’s Emerging Writers Festival

Can utility companies help protect women experiencing family violence?

The future of ageing for women? Crisis and Cat Food

To reduce family violence we need to look further than the inner city.

Support this Indigogo campaign to get Solomon Islands disability activist to a world conference.

Feminist cycling!!!!!

Welcome to Monday! ~ 13th April 2015

micf

Hi everyone!

So, I’m back from my walk in the woods and I have a few minutes to throw together some link love for you and considering that I’m spending most of my evenings at the Melbourne International Comedy Festival at the moment I thought I’d just let you know who I think you should be seeing in the last week of the festival (if you’re in Melbourne).

Tessa Waters: WOMANz

Review here from Adelaide. Book tickets here for Melbourne.

Nicolette Minster: Inanimately

Review here from Australian Stage. Book tickets here for Melbourne.

Celia Pacquola: Let me know how it all works out

Review here from SYN. Book tickets here for Melbourne. (ONLY ONE SHOW LEFT)

Sarah Pascoe vs History

Review here from Edinburgh. Book tickets here for Melbourne.

Anne Edmonds: You know what I’m Like!

Review here from Squirrel Comedy. Book tickets here for Melbourne.

Geraldine Hickey: Listen Out for the Castanets

Review here from BrisbaneBook tickets here for Melbourne.

And, if you’re not in Melbourne. Look out for the MICF Roadshow, coming to your town!

Editors note: Please be aware that I am not a comedy reviewer and I have a personal connection with many of the performers mentioned here so these recommendations could not be considered “independent”. That said, I stand by all these women as brilliant, either because I’ve seen them myself or because they’ve come highly recommended by people I trust.

 

 

 

Welcome to Monday ~ 2nd March, 2015.

Vale Lesley Gore, she of “It’s My Party” and “You Don’t Own Me”, feminist and LGBT activist.

Brocklesnitch on periods.

And while we’re on the topic, an oldie but a goodie from Ms.Elouise about the necessariness of periods.

I wrote about body image on Total Divas.

Cripface Oscar bait reigned supreme at this years’ Academy Awards.

Calling women “girls” hints at an infantalisation and undermining of women and their accomplishments: me at TheVine.

Meet the Feminist Fucker: a guy who sees feminists as the ultimate conquest.

Bitch Flicks had an unlikeable women theme week: here‘s their roundup featuring a piece from yours truly on the feminism of Cristina Yang.

The feminaust month that was February!

Sorry I’ve been a slack – oh, I’ve been very busy planning a rather adventurous adventure riding my horse from Melbourne to Canberra through the mountains and feminaust has been the victim. Thankfully Scarlett has been keeping up with her once a month W2Ms so I’m going to try to redeem myself a little bit by doing a recap of the month that was February 2015 and then you can look forward to W2M from Scarlett in your web browser on Monday March 2nd!!

I’m afraid there will then be more radio silence until I’m back on the interwebs in mid-April. So I hope you don’t miss me too much and enjoy the links from the feminaust montht that was February 2015.

The shitstorm that is raging about the Human Rights Commisioner Gillian Triggs, stinks of many things, including sexism and misogyny, a complete absence of logic and some pretty crap basic literacy skills. Here’s a few of the articles I read;

From The Women’s Agenda “I stand with Gillian”

From the Guardian, If only they would stop and listen they might save themselves a lot of trouble.

And from the Sydney Morning Herald “reading is for chumps”

Anyone who watched Q&A on Monday 23rd Feb could be forgiven for thinking that family violence is rife in this country… oh wait, it is. 14 women have died at the hands of the partner or former partner this year. THIS YEAR. It’s only the end of February. So the ABC bravely gave us four men and a couple of birds to talk about the problem. Here is some of the commentary;

From the Guardian

Instead of capitalising on their expertise in family violence, Rosie Batty and Natasha Stott Despoja were used on a Q&A special to interpret and validate men

 

From Clementine Ford

Do not be fooled into thinking that the ABC and its audience are above the kind of shallow sexism that defines the rest of society.

 

It’s not about February but March is International Women’s Day month so here’s what’s happening around the nation.

In Melbourne Y Listen is a music fundraiser for YWCA Victoria. An organisation close to feminaust’s heart.

Around the country the National Association for Women in Construction is hosting breakfasts and other events.

In Sydney, the Director of the Workplace Gender Equality Agency, Helen Conway, is in conversation.

Quentin Bryce is having breakfast at the Zonta Club in Brisbane.

Business Chicks is hosting a breakfast in Perth

Diamonds of Devonport are having a dinner.

And a million other events near you. Check out the official events page for more information.

Check out this Black February Feminist line up.

Want a cool women’s rights job? Check these ones out!

 

Welcome to Monday! ~ 2nd February, 2015.

An interesting perspective on #askhermore and the capitalism of the red carpet.

Both Jezebel and Cosmo are talking vaginismus and vulvodynia, or painful sex.

I’m sick of consuming media about men.

Speaking of, why is some media given a free pass while other media is expected to be all things to all people? And usually there’s a gendered element.

How menstruation affects female sportswomen.

And while we’re on the topic, WTF was up with #twirlgate?!

I wrote about the choice to be a Total Diva, the reality show centered around women wrestlers.

What happens when your feminist heroes let you down?

Further to that, Germaine Greer puts her foot in her mouth again when speaking about trans women.

The Australian’s obituary for our highest-selling author Colleen McCulloch was a sexist shitstorm. Here’s how Twitter reacted.

Rosie Batty was named Australian of the Year this time last week, but will her crowning do anything to change the way we see domestic violence?

Here are all the abusive tweets feminist gaming critic Anita Sarkeesian receives in one week.

And this is what happened when Lindy West confronted her troll.

Instead of insisting that everyone’s beautiful, why don’t we work on placing less emphasis on beauty?

Saved by the bell hooks.