Million Women Rise

Dancing in the Street

Saturday the 6th of March was the Million Women Rise march. Scheduled the closest weekend to International Women’s Day, Million Women Rise brings together women from all over the country to march against violence against women – domestic and sexual abuse. For more on my thoughts on why it’s important for women to stand up agains VAW, and why it does require a different approach than violence against men, by men, see here.

This following quote was on a few placards, and really stuck in my mind:

It has probably become more dangerous to be a woman than to be a soldier in armed conflict
– Major-General Patrick Cammaert, former Commander of UN Peacekeeping forces in the eastern Congo (Source).

There was a really good turn out. You can see the F Word’s coverage here with links to @CTrouper and @Jester‘s  photo sets. Below see an audioboo I recorded just before we got going, a flickr slideshow of my snaps, and a couple of videos of speakers/singers at the rally after the march.

It’s difficult to get involved in domestic and sexual violence protest if you are male, because it’s often important that such spaces are ‘safe’ spaces for people who have been subject to such violence, and also that women are able to be seen to be powerful in their own right.

If you want to oppose male violence against women, and are male, you can start by recognising that women are not objects or possessions, oppose their portrayal as such in the media, magazines, music, your workplace, and your own home. You could also check out the White Ribbon Campaign, and support Rape Crisis Centres, Refuge, and Amnesty International‘s work in countries where rape is being used as a weapon of war, and state religion refuses women rights over their own bodies.

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2 Responses to “Million Women Rise”

  1. Graham Caskie July 16, 2010 at 2:06 pm #

    Thanks for this thoughtful post.

    I am passionately opposed to violence against women and support all endeavours to root out such cowardly domestic violence.

    Yet I happened to be in Central London when this protest was on and I sat down and watched it for a while. To be quite honest, I felt i was some sort of disgusting thug for being a male after some of the speakers. I understand (up to a point, i’m not a woman…) why passions on this were so high but it felt like it turned into vitriol at times.

    I couldn’t remember the name of the protest until today hence me finding your blogpost and finding it very encouraging as i think more often than not, it is men who can be a huge force in the elimination of such horrors by other men.

    I guess we should all work together but i am happy to have found your post explaining why it is a women only organisation and can more understand that now, it was just a shame on that day that some (or rather one in particular) went slightly over the edge in my opinion.

    Don’t stop believing.


  1. Feminist Peace Network » Blog Archive » International Women’s Day–Celebrations And Statements - March 7, 2010

    […] Wonderful photos from the Million Women Rise march in London: […]

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