“It takes a lot of energy, it really does”: Feminist Organisers’ Experiences of Activism
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About the Event
In response to the current ‘feminist zeitgeist’ (Valenti 2014) in which feminism is more popular than perhaps it has ever been, and with the proliferation of digital feminist campaigns against harassment, misogyny and rape culture such as #yesallwomen and #bringbackourgirls, there is a growing body of research interested in digital feminist activism (Dimond et al. 2013; Horeck 2014; Puente 2011; Rapp et al. 2010; Rentschler 2014; Shaw 2011, 2012a, 2012b, 2012c; Thrift 2014). While this research undoubtedly sheds new light on digital feminist practices, few scholars have explored girls’ and women’s experiences engaging with digital platforms to challenge on and offline misogynistic practices. In response, this paper will provide key findings from a 21-month study funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council UK, which sheds insights into various experiences of 17 feminist ‘organisers’ from the Everyday Sexism Project, Hollaback! and Who Needs Feminism? This research not only documents the highs and lows of feminist activism, but brings to light the personal toll and affective weight of this labour.