Phoebe Moloney, Georgia Cranko and Julia Readett
2014 is going to be a very exciting year for us. We will be putting a large focus on accessibility and inclusion which is a principle we would like all our gatherings to embody. This means that the spaces, tone and activities of our events don’t implicitly or explicitly exclude certain experiences of being a wom*n. We want to provide ample opportunity for all our members to explore and share new ideas, stories and experiences influencing their activism. Together in 2014 we want to critically examine what Wom*n’s activism has and could be.
Maybe you have noticed that wom*n’s activism, particularly western Feminism tends to focus on one experience of being a woman; being white, heterosexual, employed, comfortable with identifying as a ‘woman’ and who ‘look’ like women. This year Wom*n’s Collective wants to work hardest at fostering a community and outlook that practises intersectionality in our activism. Intersectionality is a word you mightn’t be familiar with but it is a concept used to describe the experience of identities which fall out of normative moulds (for example the classic ‘woman’ we described above) who experience and embody more than one oppression in their lives. When we fight for wom*n’s rights we can’t just fight on behalf of a “normal” woman’s experience (because “normal” in fact that describes very few of us!). We have to fight for the wom*n who experience sexism, racism, queerphobia, transphobia, gendered-violence, fat-shaming, unemployment, classism, whore-phobia – because just the fact they identify in some way as a wom*n makes their experience of these oppressions something quite different to a man’s.
If you would like to talk to us about intersectionality or activisim or feminism or university or anything, please (PLEASE) come to talk to us at our O-week stall – which we are officially pumped for! Look out for us on Eastern Ave where we will be handing out show-bags that detail our activities and practices further, and our publication ‘Growing Strong’ which celebrates the diverse literary and artistic talents of wom*n both on campus and off. We will also be munching on ironic cupcakes, selling freshly made t-shirts and undies that raise awareness about sexual consent.
Hope to see you there!