Feminism

Marx on Gender & the Family: A Critical Study By Heather A. Brown Haymarket, 2013 US socialist Heather Brown has performed a great service in this short, yet detailed survey of all of Karl Marx’s writings on women and gender ― including some that have never been published in any language. Brown shows how Marx did not just analyse economics and history, he interrogated all forms of literature (even police files) to tease out the threads of social oppression.
Hundreds of Kurds gathered in a Turkish border town on October 7 for the funerals of four women killed fighting the Islamic State (IS) group. Across the border, a Kurdish female militia is playing a leading role in defending Kobani (also known as Kobane).
Sarah Hathway, the Socialist Alliance candidate for Geelong, and Sean Brocklehurst, the Socialist Alliance candidate for Pascoe Vale, released this statement on October 16. *** We strongly support the Reclaim the Night marches organised across Victoria and the world. Violence against women is endemic to the sexist culture promoted by our oppressive, exploitative, capitalist society. Vibrant public campaigns protesting such violence can help win better safety and rights for women, and are an important part of the struggle for a better world.
Kurdish fighters in the northern-Syrian city of Kobani have been fighting an armed struggle against Islamic State (IS) fighters for the past month. The Kurdish fighters are resisting IS attempts to take their city, which would result in a massacre. There has been some debate among left activists about whether the Kurdish struggle is anti-imperialist, whether the people’s militia groups in Kobani have been calling for imperialist military intervention, and what issue Australian anti-war activists should focus on.
The article below was is taken from a longer message released by Malalai Joya, the renowned Afghan feminist who has resisted the Taliban and US-led occupation of her nation, on October 12. It is abridged from www.malalaijoya.com. ***
About 100,000 people marched in Kolkata on September 20 against police violence and for gender justice. I have known the city all my life and have not known of a demonstration of that size since the 1960s. The march was in response to a huge police crackdown on a peaceful student protest on Jadavpur University campus, one of the leading universities in the state.
Unspeakable Things: Sex, Lies & Revolution Laurie Penny Bloomsbury, 2014 English author Laurie Penny describes herself as a “journalist, activist, feminist, troublemaker, nerd and net denizen”. Her book, Unspeakable Things, is a collection of polemical essays in which Penny takes aim at mainstream (liberal) feminism, which she says “remains tepid and cowardly”.
Domestic violence is the only criminal charge that is increasing in NSW. In Australia, one woman dies from it every week and one is hospitalised every three hours. Under such circumstances, one would hope the political will would exist to increase funding for services proven to help vulnerable women at risk. Instead, the NSW government is reducing 336 existing services to just 149 services run by 69 lead agencies, 75% of which are Christian organisations.
After four venues cancelled bookings under pressure from protesters, the World Congress of Families announced a fifth venue for its conference in Victoria — the headquarters of notorious anti-Muslim hate group Catch the Fire Ministries. A coalition of groups opposing the WCF called a media conference on August 28 to explain why they were determined to stop the right-wing fundamentalist Christian conference from going ahead in Melbourne on August 30.
Around 50 protesters held a picket outside the opening of the World Congress of Families on August 30, which finally found a venue in the bunker-like premises of the Catch the Fire Ministries in outer suburban Hallam. This sect gained notoriety for declaring the 2009 Black Saturday bushfires were a punishment from God due to the decriminalisation of abortion in Victoria. READ MORE: Why we disrupted the World Congress of Families
El Salvador approves progressive tax reforms El Salvador’s National Legislative Assembly passed a package of tax reforms on July 31, CISPES.org said on August 13. The laws aim to shifting the fiscal burden from the nation’s poor majority to the wealthy elite and ease the country’s dependence on international loans to finance important social investment. The bill was approved despite a fierce campaign against it in the nation’s conservative media.
Victoria police are vetting registrants and scouting venues to try to provide security for the besieged World Congress of Families in Melbourne on August 30. The final venue for the event remains unclear as they try to avoid clashes with widespread community opposition. Activists are already causing chaos for conference organisers Babette Francis of the Endeavour Forum (formerly Women Who Want to be Women) and John Brennan of the conservative Catholic men’s group Knights of the Southern Cross.