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By Communist Party of India (Marxist-Leninist) Liberation
April 3, 2017 — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal reposted from Liberation, central organ of the Communist Party of India (Marxist-Leninist) Liberation — March 8 – International Women’s Day – was born in the struggles that women factory workers in their thousands waged against bondage a century ago. Communists began the tradition of observing IWD in memory of those struggles.
Ironically, the powers-that-be and the advertisements all across try to hide the real legacy of Women’s Day and seek to establish a different narrative. They try to tell us that International Women’s Day (IWD) is an occasion when husbands are supposed to buy women washing machines and kitchen gadgets, when boyfriends are supposed to buy them flowers, and governments are supposed to make promises for ‘women empowerment’. So it is important for us to collectively reassert the fighting legacy of the international women’s day and draw lessons for the tasks and challenges at hand. On the occasion of International Women’s Day 2017 let us reiterate some key concerns of the women’s movement.
By Liz Mason-Deese
February 20, 2017 — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal reposted from Viewpoint Magazine — When women in Argentina, and across Latin America, decided to go on strike on October 19, 2016, the mobilization surpassed all expectations. Organized in only a matter of days, the call resonated across Latin America and hundreds of thousands of women across the continent went on strike, marched, and protested. The strike was an immediate response to the brutal rape and murder of sixteen year old Lucía Perez in Mar del Plata as well as a series of other femicides and violent repression at the National Women’s Meeting in Rosario.
With the slogans “not one less” and “we want ourselves alive,” they were striking not only for an end to violence against women, but also to highlight the connection between this violence and the economic violence of the devaluing of women’s labor. This insistence on the relationship between male violence and the devaluing of women’s labor was one of the strike’s central messages and organizing principles.
By Katarzyna Bielińska-Kowalewska
February 24, 2017 — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal reposted from New Politics —In Poland the law on abortion is one of the most restrictive in the European Union, sex education does not exist, and contraception is both expensive and hard to obtain because a medical prescription is often needed.
According to a 1993 law, abortion is allowed only in three cases: when pregnancy is a threat to a woman’s life or health; when there is a high possibility of severe malformation or illness of a fetus, confirmed by a prenatal exam; or when a pregnancy is the result of a crime (rape, incest, or pedophilia). In other cases it is criminalized. A doctor or anyone else who helps a woman to perform an abortion, including a partner, a family member, or a friend, may be punished with three years of imprisonment. A woman who has aborted is not prosecuted. For more than 20 years this very restrictive law has been called a compromise by conservative, liberal, and social-democratic politicians.
US: International Women’s Strike platform (plus 'For a Feminism of the 99% and a militant International Strike on March 8')
February 20, 2017 — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal reposted from International Women's Strike USA — The International Women’s Strike on March 8th, 2017 is an international day of action, planned and organized by women in over 30 different countries.
In the spirit of solidarity and internationalism, in the United States March 8th will be a day of action organized by and for women who have been marginalized and silenced by decades of neoliberalism directed towards working women, women of color, Native women, disabled women, immigrant women, Muslim women, lesbian, queer and trans women.
March 8 will be the beginning of a new international feminist movement that organizes resistance not just against Trump and his misogynist policies, but also against the conditions that produced Trump, namely the decades long economic inequality, racial and sexual violence, and imperial wars abroad.
By Ni Una Menos Collective
February 20, 2017 — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal reposted from Viewpoint Magazine — Last October 19, the call for a women’s strike to protest the femicide of sixteen year old Lucía Pérez, who was stabbed to death, connected male violence with forms of labor, economic, social, and territorial violence and precarization, and denounced them as a new “pedagogy of cruelty” on women’s bodies (in a scene with undeniable colonial echoes).
That femicide occurred the day after the 31st National Women’s Meeting in Rosario (Argentina), in which 70,000 women participated and, in a closing march, occupied forty street blocks. The meeting only appeared in the press because it was repressed at the end. At the beginning of that same month, women in Poland convoked a national strike rejecting the changes that were being imposed in local legislation to further restrict access to legal abortion.
Following the October 19 Women’s Strike and the formation of alliances of women from different parts of the world, the call emerged for an International Women’s Strike on March 8.
“Over the next months and years we will be called upon to intensify our demands for social justice, to become more militant in our defense of vulnerable populations. Those who still defend the supremacy of white male hetero-patriarchy had better watch out.
“The next 1,459 days of the Trump administration will be 1,459 days of resistance: Resistance on the ground, resistance in the classrooms, resistance on the job, resistance in our art and in our music.
Kurds and Turks are at the edge of a cliff: An interview with arrested Kurdish women’s rights activist Ayla Akat
Nadje al-Ali and Latif Tas interview Ayla Akat
November 4, 2016 — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal reposted from Open Democracy — Ayla Akat, lawyer, former Peace and Democracy Party (BDP) MP for Batman, KJA Spokesperson and prominent Kurdish women’s rights activists based in Diyarbakir (Amed) was arrested a few days ago alongside other Kurdish women’s rights activists.
They were protesting against the illegal arrest of Gültan Kışanak, co-mayor of Diyarbakir, who has been detained together with the city’s male co-mayor, Fırat Anlı. In addition, 27 elected Kurdish co-mayors are in prison in Turkey, while 43 of them were dismissed. On 11 September 2016, the central government appointed deputy governors as trustees to replace the dismissed Kurdish mayors who were elected by more than 70% of the public vote.
By Kamala Emanuel
September 28, 2016 — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal — "'It's only a penis' rape, feminism and difference" is a fascinating piece of anthropology and provides with a useful starting point for a much needed discussion. In it, Christine Helliwell provides an account and discussion of an incident that vividly illustrates what it is to live in a society where rape is unthinkable. The incident, and the essay, provide much food for thought for feminists in the West, regarding how we might imagine our society without rape, the threat of rape and even the possibility of thinking of rape, and what steps we might take to achieve a society like that. At a time when Western feminists are characterising our culture as a rape culture, the picture painted by Helliwell of a society free of rape provides us with a contrast that can help us better understand our own society and what it is in it that makes rape possible, even inevitable.
September 13, 2016 — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal reposted from Tanqeed — Writer and labor organizer, Sara Jaffri, and left-wing political worker and the Punjab Deputy General Secretary of the Awami Workers Party, Alia Amirali talk organizing, feminism and class in Pakistan.
By Jocelyn Piercy
August 7, 2016 -- Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal -- When I think of the struggles in Toronto in the 1980s and ’90s for sexual and reproductive justice or liberation (that is, for more than just legal or formal rights), I think of the importance of having AIDS Action Now and the Ontario Coalition for Abortion Clinics (OCAC) as socialist feminist leaders in these respective struggles.
By Kavita Krishnan
June 17, 2016 -- Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal reposted from Liberation -- India worships mothers; political leaders are fond of equating the nation with Mother, and politics and popular culture both make a huge deal of ‘respect for mothers’. But in spite of this hyper-visible, in-your-face celebration of motherhood, there seems to be a deliberate obscuring of the labour of mothering and care work that women perform. ‘Put her on a pedestal and forget her’ seems to be the approach of Governments. Worship of mothers and slogans of ‘Bharat Mata’ and praise for mothers’ supposed capacity for ‘sacrifice’ and ‘silent suffering’ help us to reinforce the myth that motherhood is a responsibility that women must bear cheerfully and single-handedly, expecting nothing from the State, from employers, from society.
And yet, if we would bother to listen to the voices of real live women, we would find it difficult to keep celebrating domestic drudgery as happy self-sacrificing motherhood.