Women's rights and Feminism

Rape as a weapon of war

Published on: Sat, 28/03/2020 - 10:44

Jean Lane

Pietro da Corona's 17th century painting depicts "the rape of the Sabine women" by the early Roman armies. But rape in war is also much more modern.

Christina Lamb has been a journalist reporting from war zones for over thirty years. Her book Our Bodies Their Battlefield: What War Has Done To Women, published by William Collins in 2020, traces the struggle to get rape recognised as a war crime.

When Lamb began to submit copy to editors, telling the largely unreported evidence of survivors who told her their stories, her editors would reply that it would be too shocking for their readers to put

Help for domestic violence victims is a key service

Published on: Wed, 25/03/2020 - 07:50

Katy Dollar

The often-quoted figure is two women a week killed by a current or former partner in England and Wales.

As we enter a new decade in 2020, the number of women being murdered per week in the UK by an abusive partner or ex-partner has risen to three. A further three women a week commit suicide to escape abuse.

Millions of women experience domestic violence every year. We can’t ignore these figures when the government has introduced measures to force people to stay at home.

There were increased reports of domestic violence in Wuhan following “lockdown” to prevent the spread of Covid-19. The US

The feminist issues round "staying home"

Published on: Wed, 18/03/2020 - 10:56

Katy Dollar

More and more of us will be advised or forced to stay home for whole periods, and to stay home longer each week even when we are going to work.

We must remember that for many women and children, staying home comes with additional dangers of its own.

In the 2015 Ebola outbreak when Sierra Leone shut schools, girls removed from school took on care work and were also at heightened risk of sexual abuse and teen pregnancy. Activist reports and police statistics both report a spike in domestic violence in Wuhan as a result of strict curfews.

The New York public school system has announced school

Who’s “skilled”, who’s “unskilled”?

Published on: Wed, 11/03/2020 - 07:55

Katy Dollar

Home Secretary Priti Patel has announced the government wants to “encourage people with good talent” and “reduce the number of people coming to the UK with low skills”.

Rightly, this has provoked a flurry of articles and social media content arguing that the government’s characterisation of care work, which is very badly paid, is ignorant and offensive.

Under the proposed point system, people wishing to move to Britain will need 70 points to be eligible. Migrants must have spoken English (10 points) and a job offer from an approved sponsor (20 points) at the skill grade of A-level or above (20

The socialist history of International Women's Day

Published on: Tue, 10/03/2020 - 19:56

Kelly Rogers

International Women’s Day has its roots in some of the most significant moments of our movement’s history. It is our task to remember this history and to turn International Women's Day into a day of strikes and struggle once more.

It was at the second International Conference of Socialist Women, held in Copenhagen in 1910, that the idea of an International Women’s Day was first formally agreed. German delegates Luise Zietz and Clara Zetkin brought the proposal in front of a hundred women delegates, from seventeen countries. The resolution read:

“In agreement with the class-conscious

Who can stop Trump?

Published on: Tue, 10/03/2020 - 19:52

Vicki Morris

Elizabeth Warren, would-be Democratic presidential nominee candidate, had a great line in the TV debate on 19 Feb:

“I’d like to talk about who we’re running against: a billionaire who calls women ‘fat broads’ and ‘horse-faced lesbians’. And no, I’m not talking about Donald Trump, I’m talking about Mayor Bloomberg.”

Michael Bloomberg: the billionaire candidate spending vast sums in his attempt to win the Democratic nomination, who bought himself a podium on the platform that night – the one, uncomfortably, next to Warren, as luck would have it.

For that great put-down Warren garnered much

Combat transphobia through education, not expulsions

Published on: Tue, 10/03/2020 - 19:42

Christie Neary

This article was originally published on Labour List and has been republished with the author's permission. Find it here: www.labourlist.org/2020/02/labour-should-combat-transphobia-through-education-not-expulsions

There is undoubtedly an issue of transphobia in the Labour Party. The Labour Campaign for Trans Rights has been set up to combat this, as well as fight for positive advances for the rights of trans and non-binary people. We do this with a recognition that the Labour Party and the wider labour movement are crucial for winning and consolidating the rights of marginalised people within

Is De Beauvoir worth reading?

Published on: Tue, 10/03/2020 - 18:23

Dave Kirk

What's often called 'second-wave' feminism is sometimes dated to begin with the publication of The Second Sex by Simone De Beauvoir in 1949. De Beauvoir herself was critical of that claim later in life; whilst acknowledging that she had some influence on the women's movement that grew in the 1960s, she argued that it had other more pressing, contemporary influences.

It's a long book. Over 700 pages. So why is it worth reading a book long on how women have been treated in philosophy and literature and short on the specifically political? The pre-WW1 British women's suffrage movement is glossed

Against sex-based feminism

Published on: Tue, 10/03/2020 - 17:50

Cathy Nugent

"Feminists do not conflate sex and gender. Sex is a scientific term for one's biology, and this cannot be changed. As materialists we believe the root of women's oppression lies in her biology, a view underpinning socialist theory for generations. Gender theory does not provide an alternative credible analysis and it is regressive. Queer theorists see the intimate connection between biological sex and oppression and react by trying to dismantle the notion of biological sex whilst socialists and feminists react by seeking to dismantle oppression." - from the Women’s Place UK website.

One of the

Babies, brooders and the abolition of gender

Published on: Tue, 10/03/2020 - 17:45

Kelly Rogers

“How can men be mothers! How can some kid who isn’t related to you be your child?” She broke free and twisted away in irritation.

“It was part of women’s long revolution. When we were breaking all the old hierarchies. Finally there was that one thing we had to give up too, the only power we ever had, in return for no more power for anyone. The original production: the power to give birth. 'Cause as long as we were biologically enchained, we’d never be equal. And males never would be humanized to be loving and tender. So we all became mothers.”

An exchange between Connie and Luciente in
Woman on

This website uses cookies, you can find out more and set your preferences here.
By continuing to use this website, you agree to our Privacy Policy and Terms & Conditions.