We had our first book club discussion! It was a very cozy, friendly meet-up where we had the chance to discuss a few of the topics that triggered us in Roxane Gay’s Bad Feminist.
So, this time we met up in the Architecture Faculty, in the (very suitably named) Think room. As we were arriving we had the chance to introduce ourselves and the group for the new ones. Then, after ordering some warm food, we made with a list with the topics we wanted to discuss… about 20 bullet points, which resulted a bit ambitious for a two hour meeting.
Overall, we talked about women’s rights, friendships, identity, affirmative action and pop culture. Obviously, there is so much to say for each of these topics, and each one of us had their own points to share… so, here is an overview of the discussion:
The start was about the title itself, and being bad feminist. Everyone seemed to be happy with the title, embracing it and enjoying its use. Every one thought it took the weight of the concept, it felt it was something everyone of us could do or be. (On a personal note, I then would prefer just to say that we’re feminists or even fabulous feminists when feminism is this through which we feel and are aware, reflective and empowered to act in our context and with our diverse backgrounds… but that’s me!).
Then, we started getting into the other topics. We continued with women’s rights in some of our countries. How the law changes from nation to nation (sometimes from region to region inside a country too like in Mexico).Basically, the difference is that in some places women’s have all the right to decide for their bodies, whereas in other places this right is non-existent, or at best, limited to situations of rape, deadly diseases or specific conditions that are in themselves questionable. Importantly, who decides what conditions are enough for letting a woman decide for her own body and when are they not? who decides when those conditions are met? Are women being put on trial? What do they have to go through, on top of their particular situation, to be able to decide over their bodies? When is the women’s perspective considered?
In a slightly different topic, one of us from Russia pointed out that recently a law was passed in Russia that decriminalizes home violence. We however could not remember the specifics for this law (after a quick check I found from this article in The Guardian that “beatings of spouses or children that result in bruising or bleeding but not broken bones are punishable by 15 days in prison or a fine, if they do not happen more than once a year.”)
Unfortunately, there is no time now to write all about our discussion, but please, take a closer look at the image above, and discuss these topics with everyone!