The National Organization for Women comes across as rather staid compared to well-known French feminist organizations, such as Neither Whores Nor Submissives or Guard Bitches, which appropriate common insults against women to put their own message out there front and center. In honor of International Women's Day, and Women's Week in France, here's a quick tour of a few French feminist groups.
Ni putes ni soumises - Neither Whores Nor Submissives www.npns.fr
For International Women's Day, Ni Putes ni Soumises is organizing a day of round table discussions at the Institut du Monde Arabe, Thursday, March 8th. The two themes will be the struggle of Arab women and their role in post-revolutionary societies; and Women in the Arab world and in Europe for a universal civilization. Reserve at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Arab Springs: Women’s Spring? at the Institut du Monde Arabe
See the French Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs’ English language article on this event as well as others taking place tomorrow. For information on French government initiatives promoting women’s rights and equality, click here (the article will show on the right).
|(C) 2011 La Barbe|
La Barbe Groupe d'Action Feministe – The Beard www.labarbelabarbe.org
La Barbe means 'the beard', but it can also imply exasperation, as in "Enough, I've had it." The group shows up at events or assemblies from which women are traditionally absent or excluded and silently stand in front of the people representing male supremacy sporting obviously fake beards. The group decorates statues, appears in public forums, such as the Senat, and in all sectors of society: the arts, politics, science, business, and
Les Chiennes de Garde - Guard Bitches - chiennesdegarde.com
Translated prudishly as ‘Watchdogs’ by the New York Times, the chiennes de garde 'bare their teeth at those who publicly attack women.' Their annual Macho of the Year Award will be announced on March 8th. The chiennes will also be taking part in a Manifestation (Demonstration and March) beginning at the Place de la Nation at 6:30pm. The march will end at Bastille and another, women only march will begin at 8pm.
Osez le Feminisme! - Dare to be Feministe - www.osezlefeminisme.fr
This group, along with the chiennes, was behind the legislation to remove the title "Mademoiselle" from official forms.
|In 1971, these women risked going to prison|
Le Manifeste des 343 (Salopes)
No discussion of modern French feminism would be complete without mention of the Manifesto of the 343, a declaration demanding the legalization of abortion, written by Simone de Beauvoir, and signed by prominent women in French public life who admitted to having had illegal abortions. Le Manifeste des 343 was published on April 5, 1971 in weekly magazine Le Nouvel Observateur. A week later the satirical journal Charlie Hebdo published a drawing by Cabu attacking male politicians with “"Qui a engrossé les 343 salopes du manifeste sur l'avortement?" ("Who got the 343 sluts from the abortion manifesto pregnant?"), thus rebaptizing the manifesto. This public declaration by women including Catherine Deneuve, Jeanne Moreau, Francoise Sagan and Ages Varda led to the legalization of abortion in France with the (Simone) Veil Law in 1975. Mention of this manifesto is made in Julie Delpy's film Two Days in Paris, when her real-life mother, Marie-Pillet, proudly tells Julie Delpy's very confused boyfriend that she was a 'salope'.