Attendance of the Feminist School in the RÃ¶da Sten Culture Association
Monday 4 April 2011, by
Feminist School :The Feminist School had been at the RÃ¶da Sten Culture Association’s Art Exhibition in Sweden for March 8th 2011.
Below speech made by Roya Sahraei member of the Feminist School at the exhibition:
First of all Iâ€™d like to thank everybody who has made a big effort to hold this creative, significant and beautiful event. Also Iâ€™d like to thank Roda Sten art center for inviting â€œThe Feminist Schoolâ€ as an active member of â€œIranian womenâ€™s movementâ€ ; the movement that aims to change the laws to womenâ€™s advantage by improving womenâ€™s knowledge of their individual and civil rights. The activists of the movement are always accused disturbing public opinion. Authorities think that they can rule the publicâ€™s life and thought to make them follow their political and ideological framework for ever. Therefore, any word, action or demand against their framework can interpret in disturbing the public opinion which is a crime by their law and must be penalized .
With more than a century history of activities, Iranian womenâ€™s movement still tries to achieve the equal civil and legal rights and they resist all difficulties and threats against them. Itâ€™s a shame that after all these years, women still fighting for their basic demands. This unsuccess resulted in ignoring women in both revolutions, 1906 and 1979, one by eliminating women and ignoring their demands and the other by retrieving lots of womenâ€™s modern rights achieved before 1979 revolution. These caused by eastern dictatorship and strong combination of social traditions with religion and also caused by intellectualsâ€™ unkindness and their maximalism thoughts who minimized womenâ€™s unequal situation and consider their demands as unimportant or second important issues in society . But all these experiences helped today womenâ€™s movement a lot to move consciously and also to improve womenâ€™s awareness in the region. Discussion of uniting women in Middle East after recent democratic revolutions in Tunisia and Egypt to avoid ignoring womenâ€™s demands approves this reality.
Iranian womenâ€™s struggles against their elimination and dissolve in fundamentalism ideas, which culminated by compulsory Hijab and changing the family code against women, has been started form the very beginning after 1979 revolution, by arranging a very big demonstration in 9 of March. 1979.This is great that today in this event we have access to more than 90 slides from that historical day. These photos has been taken by Ms Ø¢ Hengameh Golestan and showed here for the first time by Barbad Golshiry effort. Refer to these historical documents easily every one can confirm that womenâ€™s participation in this demonstration was not only against compulsory Hejab, Also for demanding equal rights in all accept.
Womenâ€™s rights activists believe in making the changes to womenâ€™s advantage and despite their political and ideological differences, and also despite all suppressions, threats or limitation caused by the government , they creatively initiate new ways to achieve their demands . Establishing independent womenâ€™s centers and NGO, publishing womenâ€™s magazines with different ideas and opinions, establishing womenâ€™s library, recalling to hold 8th March celebration by gathering at parks or other public spaces to protest unequal womenâ€™s rights or initiating strong movements such as one million signature campaign, coalition of womenâ€™s movement in the rigged presidential election of Iran, participating in protests after the election and even creating the womenâ€™s green convergence ( to emphasize the independent participation of women in Green Movement) proves that Iranian womenâ€™s movement is alive and creative. Iranian women accompany consciously the â€ Green Movementâ€ using their experiences and trying to maintain their own identity.
I am so pleased to inform you that today, 8th March, while Iâ€™m talking to you, Iranian womenâ€™s rights activists and their supporters, inside and outside Iran are participating in â€œGreen Movementâ€™s protests on Tuesdaysâ€ to demand abolition of all legal discriminations against women. This has been suggested by Shirin Ebadi , The Nobel prize winner, in her new statement on the occasion of 8th March follow by a petition has been signed by some of womenâ€™s rights activists and their supporters as â€œThere can be No Freedom Without Equalityâ€ .
As you can see Womenâ€™s movement in Iran has had immense effect nationally and internationally which has had its positives and negatives, it has been able to demand changes without causing any violence. Students of Feminist School are activists of equality movement in Iran that is resolute to change and correct the present equalities.
They realised that what they needed more than reflection was space and since they do not have their rightful place in the society they decided to establish â€œ The Feminist Schoolâ€
Feminist School is an electronic journal with the objective of voicing their demand for equality. The name â€œSchoolâ€ has chosen as they thought that school is a place for learning and expanding their knowledge by discussing their thoughts derived as social beings (or activities). Each platform that is set by women and their involvement with regard to voicing womenâ€™s issues is no doubt furthering their cause within their society.. In fact Feminist School is a place where women can think aloud on common issues.
The â€œFeminist Schoolâ€ establishers who are mostly Iranian well known activists are proud of their activities in many years to improve womenâ€™s awareness and to achieve the equal rights; they have never stopped struggling despite all suppressions, threats and civil degradations.
â€œFeminist Schoolâ€ like other womenâ€™s rights activistsâ€™ websites or organizations is somewhere that women can participate independently and talk about their demands and their thoughts ; it is a place to see and be seen, to listen and be listened; somewhere to exist. It is somewhere to improve Iranian publicâ€™s awareness not to disturb their opinion.