Last Friday I had the honour of speaking at the Vancouver and District Labour Council’s International Women’s Day celebration, at a packed house at the Fraserview Hall, on the topic of intergenerational feminism. I was the second speaker following retired CUPW activist Marion Pollack, who shared her experiences fighting sexism in the labour movement in the 1970s and working with the labour movement to fight for equality and women’s rights in the broader community.
I followed up with a talk about building intergenerational bridges in the feminist movement and looking at the issues we are still battling, like pay equity, violence against women, and a range of insidious messages that tell girls and women how they need to look and behave in order to be considered valuable and legitimate.
If you’re interested in seeing part of my talk I’ve put a video online – note my camera had a glitch at the beginning so the actual video starts at about 0:50 and the intro section of my speech is partly cut off. I think it’ll still make sense though.
I’m also including the transcript here, after the jump because it’s quite long. You can’t see my Powerpoint in the video so if you want any clarification on what slides I was using to illustrate my points, just comment below. It was really exciting for me to get to speak at this event that I usually attend every year, and I was really pleased with the positive feedback I got from several people in the audience. Overall, it was a pretty great International Women’s Day.
This International Women’s Day I wanted to do something special. IWD is a chance for us to reflect on the movements we’ve made toward gender equality as well as considering the work that still needs to be done. Something I’ve been asking myself over the past year is how I can help take the next step. I’m really proud of my work on Gender Focus but I wanted to add another element that would help myself and other feminist bloggers with the myths we always hear about feminism, and the frequently-asked-questions people who are respectful but hesitant about calling themselves feminists.
At Geek Girl Con last summer I attended a vlogging workshop with the amazing Anita Sarkeesian of Feminist Frequency and Maile Martinez of Reel Grrls. It hit me – it’s hard to find a more accessible medium than vlogs. After some brainstorming I decided to launch a series of short videos dealing with the feminism F.A.Q.s we always hear.
Here’s my first installment, which answers the question: “But…aren’t we all equal now?/Why do we still need feminism?” I thought it was an appropriate topic for IWD.
I also created a Facebook album of easily-sharable images with stats on why we still need feminism. Take a second to check it out and share your favourite on your Facebook profile or page.
Because the videos are designed to be less than 2:30 in order to be accessible, they’re going to be a little bit general and they will inevitably leave some things out. My hope is that they will prompt even more questions and engage feminists and potential future feminists in respectful dialogue.
Just from the first video I’ve learned some lessons about editing and flow that I’ll be trying to apply in future. I’m looking forward to hearing what you think, and if you have a question you’d like to see me answer in a video, please comment below!