In light of this week’s 100th International Women’s Day, Kate Wadkins (of For the Birds Collective, Brain Waves) and Stacy Konkiel (of Soul Ponies) announce the International Girl Gang Underground (IGGU) zine, which is now available in print and online. In an effort to highlight contemporary D.I.Y. feminist cultural production, twenty years after the riot grrrl movement, and in the wake of its legacy, the editors collected stories, artwork, and critical work on the subject.
The print zine features contributions from Osa Atoe (Shotgun Seamstress), Hadass Ben-Ari (Fallopian Falafel – אשת חיל), Carla Duarte (Histérica), Billy Cheer (This is Fag City), Katie Crutchfield (P.S. Eliot, Bad Banana), Lo (HEARTSREVOLUTION), Mimi Thi Nguyen (Evolution of a Race Riot, Punk Planet), and thirteen other writers, activists, musicians, and artists from ten US states and five countries; with original cover art by Philadelphia-based artist Sonrisa Rodriguez-Harrison.
Online, International Girl Gang Underground has published exclusive articles not available in the print zine. In the interest of relevance, information-sharing, and community-building, IGGU online has created a directory of feminist cultural projects; all are welcome to submit new or recent additions to the directory. Further, the editors encourage submissions of music reviews and content related to the zine to be released on the IGGU website periodically. We hope to continue these conversations online.
In Brooklyn, New York, the zine will be released on Saturday, March 12th, 2011 at Death by Audio:
INTERNATIONAL GIRL GANG UNDERGROUND ZINE RELEASE PARTY
GIRL GANG GIG VOLUME #003
$6 | 8PM | ALL AGES
+ readings from contributors of the International Girl Gang Underground zine & tabling by FOR THE BIRDS and SUPPORT NEW YORK. This event will be a safer space, with support from NYC Coalition for Safer Spaces.
@ Death by Audio
49 S. 2nd Street, b/w Kent & Wythe
Brooklyn, NY 11211
L to Bedford | JMZ to Marcy | G to Broadway
RSVP on Facebook.
With love and solidarity,
Kate Wadkins & Stacy Konkiel
The Year’s Top 10 Women’s Movement Victories
ColorLines: “In honor of women around around the world, the Global Fund for Women looks back over the past year and celebrates the extraordinary victories by women’s movements around the world.”
Sound-Off: I’d Wished I Had Planned Parenthood
Essence: “The ill-performed procedure led to an infection and I could have died because I bled so much. I kept this a secret from my mother, sisters and friends. I prayed that it would be hidden from God too.”
The New York Times’ Rape Friendly Reporting
Mother Jones: “‘Gang Rape of Schoolgirl, and Arrests, Shake Texas Town,’ the Times article covering the atrocities, is a collection of one perpetrator-excusing, victim-blaming insult after another.”
Human Rights Watch: Mississippi Policies Fuel HIV Epidemic
Huffington Post: “Mississippi has resisted effective approaches to HIV prevention and treatment and instead supported policies that promote stigma and discrimination, fueling one of the nation’s highest AIDS rates, Human Rights Watch said.”
On Being Feminism’s “Ms. Nigga”
Racialicious: “First, the idea that the third wave has mastered inclusion problems is sadly mistaken, since many of us surfing this new wave still see the rehashing that happens time and time again of second wave and first wave problems. However, it is absolutely amazing how often we see the same problems repeat themselves time and time again – particularly in the blogosphere.”
The War on Women’s Futures
The Nation: “These may seem like disparate policy efforts, but they are not. They are the product of the ethnic and economic anxieties of conservative white Americans whose determination to “take our country back” has been a rallying cry since Barack Obama’s election. Women’s bodies and lives are the terrain on which this conservative movement is making its stand.”
Jasmine Burnett at the Planned Parenthood rally in New York!
For Your Women’s History Month: Loretta Ross on the Origin of ‘Women of Color’
Racialicious: “And I think it’s a setback when we disintegrate as people of color around primitive ethnic claiming. Yes, we are Asian American, Native American, whatever, but the point is, when you choose to work with other people who are minoritized by oppression, you’ve lifted yourself out of that basic identity into another political being and another political space.”
Black Workers Central to National Union Battle
ColorLines: “More than one in five black workers are employed in public administration, as are 23.3 percent of black women in the workforce. That compares to just under 17 percent of all white workers.”
The Disposable Woman
New York Times: “It’s these sorts of explicit and implicit value judgments that underscore our contempt for women who are assumed to be trading on their sexuality. A woman’s active embrace of the fame monster or participation in the sex industry, we seem to say, means that she compromises her right not to be assaulted, let alone humiliated, insulted or degraded; it’s part of the deal.”
A Bad Year for White Whine: College Scholarships and the Cult of Caucasian Victimhood
Tim Wise: “Whether it’s affirmative action, or immigration, or so-called welfare programs presumably soaking up all the tax dollars, whites have, for forty years, made a habit of looking to those darker than ourselves to explain why our lives have turned out less satisfying than we otherwise might have liked.”
Georgia Anti-Abortion Billboard Turns Up in Los Angeles, Too
ColorLines: “Both the Lamar Advertising and the Bomberger campaigns are part of a new tactic for the anti-choice movement: Convince black people that reproductive rights are somehow a genocide against black babies, one presumably orchestrated by white liberal elites.”
HPV Affects Half of US Men
Huffington Post: “Finally, today’s study is sure to provoke discussion about whether an HPV vaccine like Gardasil should be routinely recommended by public health officials for males as it is for females.”
The mission of NARAL Pro-Choice New York is to protect safe, legal abortion and expand the full range of reproductive rights for women regardless of age, race or income. To learn more or get involved, please visit www.prochoiceny.org.
Our editors conducted the following interview with David Benzaquen who is the Political & Legislative Action Coordinator for NARAL Pro-Choice New York.
RE/VISIONIST: What is your relationship with New York’s state legislature? Do you have many strong allies in Albany?
David Benzaquen: NARAL Pro-Choice New York works to support the election of pro-choice candidates and this helps us build and maintain strong relationships with pro-choice officials. Every year during election season, NARAL Pro-Choice New York endorses a slate of candidates who show their unwavering commitment to reproductive rights issues. We are non-partisan and only endorse candidates who are 100% pro-choice, so we are proud to encourage all of our members to support these candidates and their campaigns in any way they can.
R/V: At the federal level, how would you rate the performance of US Senators and Representatives from New York in terms of their level of pro-choice or anti-choice support?
DB: Senators Gillibrand and Schumer are strong pro-choice allies. We thank Senator Gillibrand, in particular, for her recent strong opposition to anti-choice legislation being advanced by Speaker of the House John Boehner. The Congressional delegation from New York is largely pro-choice and includes some tremendous heroes of women’s rights like Representative Jerrold Nadler. Unfortunately there are also several anti-choice members who are even now trying to defund Planned Parenthood and would allow emergency rooms to deny a woman an abortion even if her life was in imminent danger. Continue reading
The National Latina Institute for Reproductive Health (NLIRH) is an organization that focuses on abortion access, reproductive health disparities and immigration reform. You can find out more by visiting their website.
Our editors conducted the following interview with Maria Elena Perez, Director of Community Mobilization.
RE/VISIONIST: In what ways does NLIRH specifically address the Latina community?
Maria Elena Perez: The mission of NLIRH is to ensure the fundamental human right to reproductive health and justice for Latinas, their families and their communities through community mobilization, policy advocacy and research. Our priority areas are abortion access, immigration reform, and reproductive health disparities. Within community mobilization, which is the area I oversee, we cultivate the leadership of a diverse group of Latinas across the country through our Latinas Organizing for Leadership and Advocacy (LOLA) Trainings, which give birth to our Latina Advocacy Networks (LANs). The LANs organize and engage in grassroots advocacy efforts on both local/state based and national issues that directly impact their communities. And when I say diverse, our base is truly reflective of the diversity within our community with respect to country of origin, language, urban vs. rural communities, class, education, etc.
R/V: Do you strive to build coalitions with other groups that are also organizing for reproductive justice?
MEP: The reproductive justice framework holds as a core tenet the concept of intersectionality, which maintains that reproductive oppression is a result of multiple, intersecting oppressions like racism, xenophobia, homophobia, sexism, etc. To achieve reproductive justice we must therefore, take into account the intersecting social justice issues. So, while we at NLIRH strive to build coalitions with other reproductive health, rights and justice groups, we also prioritize building alliances with Latino/immigrant civil rights groups and other social justice groups to integrate a reproductive justice analysis and agenda into their work. Continue reading
Editor’s Note: A previous version of this article was not formatted correctly. Below is the correct version with the author’s original format.
by Greta Minsky
“We’re helping women find themselves . . . . The women really undergo an emotional transformation. They go from being really in a rut to wanting to go out and conquer the world.”
Is this speaker talking about self-defense classes, or assertiveness training, or maybe seventies-style consciousness-raising? Not even close. Clinton Kelly is talking here about a popular reality television makeover show, What Not to Wear. Kelly, along with Stacy London, hosts the U.S. version of a series that started here in 2003 and is still going strong. The original U. K. series ran on the BBC from 2001 to 2007 and aired in twenty-two countries around the world, including Poland, Peru, and the United Arab Emirates.
So what’s the worldwide appeal of the show? It promises its subjects (mostly, but not exclusively, women) that happiness can be theirs, through professional and romantic fulfillment, if they just learn to change the way they dress. Nothing wrong with happiness, is there? What’s not to like, then, about What Not to Wear? How about the fact that it co-opts feminist rhetoric to promote an anti-feminist agenda? And why now? What twenty-first century anxieties does the show play to? Is it part of the cloudy and contradictory concept of “postfeminist” culture? Continue reading