The Empire Strikes Back, But Finds Feminism Invincible

We’re working our way through digitizing cassette tapes of recordings of our previous events, slowly but surely. This is our 7th annual Dame Nita Barrow lecture, in 2003 with Alda Facio.

It’s a fantastic & clever talk, & it’s highly recommended listening.

Transcription of the talk here.

Alda Facio, LLP, is a feminist human rights activist, jurist, and writer. As one of the founders of the Women’s Caucus for Gender Justice in the International Criminal Court, she went on to be its first Director. In 1996, she was awarded the first Women’s Human Rights Award from International Women, Law and Development in Washington D.C. She is currently the Director of the Women, Gender and Justice Program at the U.N. Latin American Institute for Crime Prevention in Costa Rica.

Alda’s work during her stay at the CWSE became the basis of what would become our annual Women’s Human Rights Education Institute (WHRI), an intensive and practical human rights-based program.

A Time To Fall

 CWSE Associate Pam Patterson, who runs the feminist-based arts collective WIAprojects, has organized A Time To Fall, a collective performance arts piece, tomorrow (July 17th, 2013) in Trinity-Bellwoods park.

A Time to Fall was originally developed by Amy Sharrocks in London, UK with a variety of people for whom falling has different resonances (able-bodied people, school children, over 60s …).

She writes, “This is a group performance which looks at how people move together.  The piece deals with the importance of care and the kindness of strangers.  It is about the shock that replays the event and the need to tell the story of each fall as a way of dissipating its power.   We look at ways of walking – and of veering off – and how experience, pain and ageing processes are accommodated into our bodies. The result is a measured, strange kind of dance with a gentleness that reflects an act of kindness and careful watching, capturing a moment of care.”


In gentle solidarity with A Time to Fall (London), WIAprojects (Toronto) invites you to come and fall together with us at Trinity Bellwoods Park (near Queen St West & Strachan) on July 17th at 6 pm. The 6 pm time is to coincide with the London event. We will gather to “rehearse” at 5.30 pm. If anyone has instruments, percussion, bells, or chimes you are welcome to join us and support this action. Children are welcome! The event will be videotaped, documented, shown online and shared with all of you and the UK group.

You can read more Pam and WIAprojects here.


Jasjit Sangha: South Asian Mothering & Stepmothering: A Spiritual Journey

Jasjit Sangha is an Visiting Scholar at the CWSE who recently published South Asian Mothering: Negotiating Culture, Family and Selfhood and Stepmothering: A Spiritual Journey.

JasjitJasjit Sangha with the editors of South Asian Mothering

jasjit 2

Reading from Stepmothering: A Spiritual Journey at the Dundas West Fest

An interview with Jasjit from masalamommas:

I was inspired to put [South Asian Mothering]  together because I wanted South Asian mothers’ voices to be heard and their experiences as mothers to be validated. I wanted to show the complexity of negotiating culture and family, as well as dispel stereotypes about South Asian women being passive, docile or not having power. When I started this project I was finishing up my PhD and I had spent a lot of time poring over literature on mothering. I looked at academic and non-academic sources, newspapers, websites, blogs, etc. and I found very little work on mothering written by South Asian women. This was before masalamommas was created so there really was no central resource that brought together writing by South Asian mothers from around the world.

Read more of the interview here.

You can also read a review of Stepmothering: A Spiritual Journey here.