Older Feminist Network

On saturday I went with a friend from MTG to meet the women from swanseas Older feminist Network. It was pretty damn awesome. Firstly Swansea women’s centre is a woman only building which pretty much made me squeee with pleasure! (it’s the last womans centre left in wales) And the women were awesome they were really friendly and welcoming. It was really interesting because they seemed to have a sense of solidarity and sisterhood and just friendship that it often missing from younger feminists. They seemed really enthusiastic about MTG as well which made me feel really good, because I think when your constantly inside something its hard to see what progress you are making with it.

I think this was a really usefull fruitfull meeting I hope we continue to make conections with them and learn from them. I think some of them are wanting to come on the abortion rights protest in cardiff so hopefully we will meet some of them again then.

It really breaks my heart that so much is lost, that younger feminists either dont know what older feminists did for us or they have a really bastardized media garbled view of them, that what we have now and what we are loosing now we have because older feminist fought for it, and that we have to take thier examples, that we have to fight so our daughters have the same rights and more than we have.

On an emotional level this is just amazing for me anyway and I just think These are the women that saved my life (not these actual women, but women of the same age and the same politics who gave me a way of understanding the world that took me out of the wreckage)

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3 Responses to “Older Feminist Network”

  1. I feel just the same – we owe these women everything, and it makes me so sad when I hear other young women, feminists in particular, claim that they are irrelevant/outdated or that “our” feminism has nothing to do with “theirs”. This whole concept of a third wave – while I agree that some focus does need to be placed on race, postcolonialism etc – seems strange to me – many of the goals of the second wave have not yet been met, despite all the wonderful achievements those women made: violence against women in still epidemic, we still don’t have equal pay, women are still discriminated in the workplace etc. Why the need to distance ourselves from the women who have more or less given us everything we have, and from whom we can learn so much?

  2. Why the need to distance ourselves from the women who have more or less given us everything we have, and from whom we can learn so much?

    I’ve been wondering if it’s partly due to some unexamined patriarchal/capitalist thinking because you read a lot of things that seem to imply that younger feminists are in competition with older feminists, as if “we” have to claim that we are better, more “enlightened,” less naïve etc. Capitalism and male-dominated society encourages us to compete all the time and maybe this thinking has structured feminism more than we like to think. The influence of academia on feminism also doesn’t help here because it’s an industry based on knocking down other peoples’ work and claiming to have better explanations. That may be all very well for some subjects, but I think it’s bad for feminism. In black lash terms, it’s also a pretty clever ruse to get younger feminists to disassociate from older feminists because then younger feminists will have to keep in reinventing the wheel, which could slow things down a bit!

    And this is a good post about the origins of Third Wave feminism — what it was supposed to mean and what didn’t in the end transpire from it. I think it puts it in context for those of us going “what do we need a third wave???” which I know I was.

    http://donnadarko.wordpress.com/2008/01/18/third-wave-feminism/

  3. […] Nectarine writes about meeting women from Swanseas Older Feminist Network. […]

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