Wednesday, March 11, 2015
CSW Day 4 Blog
Today was another exciting day at CSW; however, today was the big day: our presentations! Our presentations were all amazing. The audience really connected with each of us, and I felt like they got a lot from the projects we all have spent so much time working on. I remember afterwards, I spoke with one man extensively about my topic of women in the prison system, and he actually said that while he had been aware of the issue of incarceration, I had introduced him to the gendered lens of understanding the issue. That was really cool to hear.
Before our presentations, I actually attended an event put on by the Black Women’s Truth and Reconciliation Commission based in Brooklyn, NY that tried to speak truth to power about sexual assault against black women in the United States and create spaces of healing and reconciliation around the history of sexual violence against black women. I really want to speak more with the women in the organization about the work that they do, especially as it pertains to restorative justice and the possibility of reconciliation when addressing gender-based violence not just between survivors and harm-doers but also between all involved members of a the community.
After our presentations, we attended an event hosted by the Women’s Freedom Forum, concerning women’s human rights in Iran. One woman, who was a political activist in Iran and was imprisoned for many years, shared a powerful testimony that led most of the audience in tears. She spoke the names of her fellow comrades and political prisoners, who were executed by the Iranian regime. Her testimony made me all the more conscious of my privilege as an American feminist and the freedoms I have to speak out against my government; however, listening to her story made me wonder how exactly feminist activists like myself could effectively be in international solidarity with our sisters fighting their struggles in other parts of the world. Hopefully, the rest of this week will give me more insight.