Thursday, September 3, 9-10 pm, A Consciousness-raising session on “femininity training”

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On Thursday, September 3, 9-10 PM, Joy of Resistance proudly presents a Consciousness Raising (CR) session. Five women, ranging in age from 22 through 70, and from family backgrounds as varied as Equadorian, Mexican, Colombian and East European/Jewish, answered, from their own experience, the question “How were you trained into “femininity” and “how to be a woman” in your familiy of origin?”

Recorded live at the studios of WBAI this past July, this presentation is part of JOR’s attempt to bring this critical practice in building the feminist movement, to a new generation.

About Consciousness Raising…

Consciousness-raising is a practice that built the feminist movement in the late 60’s and 70’s, when women formed CR groups throughout the country to share the truth of their lives, and often build actions on what they learned. Consciousnes- raising sessions were also broadcast live on the air on WBAI during this time.

Quoting Carol Hanisch, writing in On the Issues ( ): “It (CR) has its roots in the 1930’s practice in China of “speak pains to recall pains” or speaking bitterness to get to the root of collective problems. This practice was used in Chinese movements including the Chinese Cultural Revolution of the 1960s. CR also takes off fro an adaptation of the Civil Rights Movement‘s “Tell it like it is,” a practice of Blacks testifying as to their specific experiences with racism, in churches or other organizing spots, to get sharper and deeper on the conditions they faced as well as the aim they should take in making change.

CR is a way to study our own lives as women, to use our experiences as data. We compare and contrast our experiences and draw conclusions so we can get closer to the truth about what is making us feel the way we do and act the way we do.”

The way it works…

According to Allison Guttu, who has led CR groups with the Women of Color Caucus of National Women’s Liberation: “The way it works is that participating women answer one question, each speaking from her own experience as a woman. After all who want to have a chance to speak, we draw conclusions, sum up and investigate what we’ve all testified about. Conclusions are the most important part – the scientific part. Often there will be commonalities between our experiences. We will think about those commonalities and ask “who benefits from this? Who is gaining? Who is suffering?” And in this way we use these conclusions to get a deeper understanding of our oppression as a group and in turn how best to fight this oppression.”

And from the Carol Hanisch article quoted above: “Consciousness-raising as a deliberate program was sparked in a New York Radical Women meeting early in 1968…In the autumn of 1968, Kathie Sarachild (a member of NYRW), wrote up A Program for Feminist Consciousness-Raising (which can be found at to distribute at the first national women’s liberation conference at Lake Villa near Chicago over Thanksgiving weekend. It initially received a mixed reception, but before long, even groups that had previously disparaged consciousness-raising as “therapy” or “navel-gazing” began to take it up. Consciousness-Raising swept the country, with groups in every major city and many smaller towns.

Conclusions drawn in these groups were used to write such insightful and influential papers as Pat Mainardi’s The Politics of Housework,Irene Peslikis’ Resistances to Consciousness, Shulamith Firestone’s Women Rap about Sex, Anne Koedt’s The Myth of the Vaginal Orgasm, Ellen Willis’s Women and the Myth of Consumerism, and my article,The Personal Is Political—to mention only a very few. Such theory did not spring up in isolation. It came from months of weekly meetings where both strong feelings of unity from shared experience and lively, sometime heated, disagreements abounded. Actions—large and small—also resulted from these discussions. For example, I got the idea for the 1968 Miss America Protest in a consciousness-raising group.”

CR is not a thing of the past and is being practiced today by such groups as National Women’s Liberation, Women of Color Caucus (of National Women’s Liberation) and Gainesville Women’s Liberation. Most recently (2012-14) it was used by National Women’s Liberation in their fight to get the Morning After Pill (MAP) available over the counter and without a prescription, as women shared experiences of needing the morning after pill and not being able to easily access it. This led to many of the actions that contributed to the victory of MAP now being accessible without a prescription and over the counter in pharmacies n the U.S.

This program will also include a Feminist News Roundup.

January 29, 9-10pm–How does street harassment intersect with race? Plus LIVE music/spoken word by Mahina Movement

Joy of Resistance: Multicultural Feminist Radio @ WBAI airs Thursdays,* 9-10 PM (EST) at WBAI, 99.5 FM (Tri-Sate area, East Coast, USA); streams at Follow us on twitter at @joyofresistance. We are archived for 90 days at To pledge to support WBAI:

On Thursday, January 29, 9-10 PM, Joy of Resistance will celebrate the end of the first month of the new year with a special treat–LIVE music and spoken word by the phenomenal 3-woman trio Mahina Movement –much of it relating to women’s experiences of street harassment. Allison Guttu, founder of the Women of Color Caucus of National Women’s Liberation and a former member of the pioneer anti-street harassment group: the Street Harassment Project (SHP) will also be live-in-the-studio and we’ll be talking about intersections of street harassment of women, and race.

The topic of race and street harassment recently got much attention, when hollaback, a group that fights street harassment, produced a video that purported to show a “day in the life” of a woman harassed on city streets by men–and all of the harassers shown in the video were Black men or other men of color! We’ll give concrete examples of how The Street Harassment Project tackled issues around racism that arose in the in the course of fighting street harassment.

We’ll also have feminist news headlines and announcements of feminist actions.

*On 3rd Thursdays, The Rape Declaration Forum airs 9-10PM.

News Stories and Links for Feminist News Round-up, January 29 Show

“March for Life” held up for 30 minutes by Stop Patriarchy on Roe Anniversary! Links with great pics of confrontation

Last Thursday, Jan 22, the 42nd anniversary of Roe v Wade, a day when Christian fundamentalists march, unopposed, by the 100’s of thousands in Washington DC–Stop Patriarchy, and others, blocked the “March for Life”, and surrounded by police, held it up for 30 minutes while holding huge signs of women who have died of illegal abortions. There were 7 arrests. You can see pictures of the confrontation, which was NOT picked up by mainstream media– through link below.

Mandatory Ultrasounds Proposed in Republican Congress

Shortly after House Republicans had to cancel a vote on Jan. 22, of an anti-abortion bill that some Republican women senators found to be too extreme, GOP congressmen introduced three new abortion restrictions, including one that would require women to receive an ultrasound procedure before an abortion.

The mandatory ultrasound bill, compels women to “receive an ultrasound and the opportunity to review the ultrasound before giving informed consent to receive an abortion.”

One of the other bills prohibits federal education funds from going to schools with access to an abortion provider on campus, and the other requires states to report information on Medicaid payments to abortion providers.

Nearly half of U.S. states have passed some kind of mandatory ultrasound bill, but political backlash in some of those states has been significant. For instance in Pennsylvania, where former Gov. Tom Corbett sparked national outrage when he defended the state’s mandatory ultrasound bill by telling women, “You just have to close your eyes.” Corbett was not re-elected.

Among Women in Unions, Gender Gap Narrows Significantly

The National Women’s Law Center (NWLC) has released an analysis of statistics from the Bureau of Labor Statistics showing that the gender wage gap, that discriminates against women–among union members–is 40 percent smaller than for non-union workers.

According to Joan Entmacher, VP for Family Economic Security (NWLC): “Today’s data show that union membership boosts wages for all workers—but especially for women,” “But last year the rate of union membership for women was flat. To promote equal pay for women, it’s time for lawmakers to stop the attacks on unions—and strengthen workers’ rights to organize.”

Among union women, Latinas experience particularly high financial benefits, making 46 % more than Latina non-union workers. African American women union members typically make 34 percent more than they would if they were non-union workers

SYRIZA Win in Greece, Significant for Feminists

SYRIZA, a coalition of left parties in Greece that is opposed to the austerity policies of the European Union–under which Greece has been plunged into poverty with a 25% unemployment rate and social services discontinued–has come to power in Greece. Although it will be an uphill battle to get all of their program implemented in the face of possible economic retaliation from the European Central Bank, their 40 point plan includes much that would, if implemented, improve the lives of women. Points include: support for single family households, increasing the public sector (unions, etc) and equal salaries for men and women. It is known that under austerity policies, women suffer the most, including, but not limited to: losing what gains they have made in public sector jobs, such as teaching and losing childcare services.

Marissa Alexander out of jail; Mandatory Minimum Sentencing Works Against Women Who Defend Themselves

Supporters of Marissa Alexander in the U.S. and all around the world are overjoyed that she has been released from jail after serving 3 years behind bars for defending her life. In 2010, Alexander, a black mother of three from Jacksonville, Florida, was forced to defend her life from a life-threatening attack by her estranged husband by firing a single warning shot that caused no injuries. State Prosecutor Angela Corey prosecuted Alexander, pursuing a 60 year mandatory minimum sentence. In November, Alexander accepted a plea deal that included time served of nearly 3 yearsand 2 years of probation while under home detention. Her time behind bars is now over.

In California, a prison study found that 93 percent of women who had killed their significant others had been abused by them. and that 67 percent reported that they had been attempting to protect themselves or their children when they wound up killing their partner. According to Rita Smith, executive director of the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence: “Most battered women who kill in self-defense end up in prison. There is a well-documented bias against women [in these cases]. Black wmn more likely to do real time–white wmn to get probation.

Mandatory minimum sentences, under which Marissa Alexander was sentenced, mandate that particular situations of women defending themselves against abuse not be taken into account in sentencing.–criminalization.html

Femicide in Argentina and Around the World is Growing Phenomenon

On average, 21 adolescent girls in Argentina are victims of femicides every year, a growing phenomenon linked to domestic violence on the part of current or ex-boyfriends and husbands. But in the case of Argentina, some independent reports, such as one by the local non-governmental organisation La Casa del Encuentro, have begun to make it clear that not only are there more gender-motivated killings, but the number of victims under 18 is increasing. The local statistics are in line with a global tendency. The World Health Organisation (WHO) reports that three out of 10 adolescent girls suffer violence at the hands of their boyfriends. On her Facebook page, “Acción Respeto: por una calle sin acoso” (Operation Respect: for harassment-free streets), Veronica Lemi talked about an aggressive, sexist culture” whose worst expression is femicide.

And that is part of a much longer story that we urge you to follow on the links provided on our blog site (repeat)

TV Show in Peru Shows Men Sexually Harassing Their Own Mothers-in-Disguise–and the Mothers’ Response!

A TV show in Peru has captured the moment unwitting men have been caught wolf-whistling their own mothers.

The experiment took two mothers, whose sons were identified as repeat cat-callers, and disguised them using make-up, wigs and clothes. The women then women walked past their sons to gauge their reaction.

In the video, one of the mothers gets so angry, she tells off her son and hits him with her pocketbook.

In the second case, the mother, wearing a green dress, walks past her son, who calls her ‘piggy’. She then calls his name before taking off her wig and confronting her son, hitting him with her hairpiece.

She tells her son to he should be ashamed of himself, as he pleads with his mother to quiet down, as he is working. He then tries to claim he didn’t make the remark and it was a man in a nearby car, but he eventually apologizes, before his mother walks off.

The video ends with a warning saying men should start respecting women before they unwittingly harass their own mothers!

It comes after the video claims that seven in 10 women say they have experienced sexual harassment on the streets of the Peruvian capital Lima