Lately, it seems there's been more discussion of what it means to be a man. Maybe because old school notions are becoming so unworkable that there's a critical mass of resentful partners in hetero relationships; perhaps Hilary's presidential run is raising some eyebrows in sheltered communities; certainly, movies like Knocked Up and 40 Year Old Virgin, which portray an alarmingly large group of American males that exist in perpetual adolescence, have attracted media attention.
Please join these participatory discussions about how—and whether—feminism can become a transformative, justice-centered movement for social change.
How can we drive attention to the power, privilege, and marginalization that continue to play out in feminist communities, and how can those of us with power and privilege become genuine and effective allies to those without it?
How can we collectively create a feminist/media/justice movement that doesn't rely on white supremacy, class privilege, and economic exploitation?
Can the idea of feminism shift to foreground an uncompromising, transformative commitment to systemic social change, or is it time to evolve to new language?
Ok, folks – here's my heart on the line: I organized my entire trip around Mother's Day so that I could combine the organization I love plus my mom and grandma, who – as much as they support and love me – really don't "get" what my work is all about.
So please, Twin Cities friends, come – and bring anyone special you want to appreciate – and let's celebrate Mother's Day with gratitude for the amazing people that allowed us to live the lives we have today.
If nothing else, do it for my grandma! She's 91 and she's incredible.
(Thank you to the fabulous Joclyn Burell of South End Press for the heads-up on this)
Chica Luna is Now Accepting Applications for the 3rd cycle of the F-Word!
Please spread the word!
Up and running and taking applications for our signature program, The F-Word, a multimedia film justice project for women of color 18 and older. Launched in January 2005, The F-Word has been Chica Luna's way to build the next cadre of socially conscious media makers by recruiting women of color of diverse racial, sexual, economic and linguistic identities, throughout the five boroughs to cultivate their perspectives as media activists.
For a year and a half, participants take part in weekly workshops on media literacy, filmmaking, organizing & advocacy skills and self-healing.
Past F-word participants have directed and produced narrative films on topics as diverse and varied as first love, female MCs, depression and police brutality. Once completing our training, these dynamic women continue to do important and innovative work in the worlds of film and video, along with theater, music and education.
I'm posting updates to my Midwestern trip as they're finalized. Here's what's happening in Milwaukee. More on other cities to come soon!
If you live in Milwaukee, please come out for these events – and spread the word!
Bitchcraft, a weekend of music, arts, crafts, and words will take place Saturday, May 17–Sunday, May 18. All events are free—donations are very much encouraged (and appreciated!) and benefit the nonprofit project you know and love as B-Word/Bitch.
Part two of Bitchcraft takes place Sunday, May 18, 4–5:30 pm. I'll facilitate a special session of the Femiknits discussion group—open to non-knitters!—at Broad Vocabulary Bookstore, 2241 S. Kinnickinnic Ave. Our discussion will focus on the ways in which feminism can be re-imagined in our communities. Even if you don't knit, please come and share your ideas, stories, and struggles.
Special guest report from friend of Bitch Kyla Wagener...
I have yet to read Tim Wise'sWhite Like Me: Reflections on Race from a Privileged Son (Soft Skull Press) or Affirmative Action: Racial Preference in Black and White (Routledge), but have heard tons of praise for his work. So I was excited for his appearance at the First Unitarian Church of Oakland earlier this month, an event sponsored by Speak Out!. I was a little wary when he took the mic and started speaking; his manner initially conjured up memories of some egotistical, "Check me out, I'm one of those aware white folks—I'm down!" types I've run into. But he ended up being sharp, funny, and—most important—aware of his role as an ally rather than a leader in the antiracist movement, acknowledging that the majority of his sources for information about race have been people of color. He was loud, but in a good way—not arrogant-bratty-white-boy loud.
During the mid-'80s, my political education came almost entirely from Bloom County, to which my brother introduced me and to which I immediately became attached. Really, what's not to love about a preadolescent Bob Woodward type, his feminist elementary-school teacher, and a neurotic penguin with an unhealthy Caspar Weinberger obsession?