photo source: Huck
When you start educating yourself about feminism one of the first things you do is meet with feminist people and have nice chats with them. Most of the young people idealize feminists as really young too, but when you go to the “field” you surprisingly find people from 10 years old to 99 years old, straight monogamous families and even religious people. The reason why most of the people think there is just young ones and non-traditional people is because social media makes feminism a trending rebel movement instead of a movement that exists for a long time and helped us to have some actual rights.
In East London are based some brilliant feminist projects like Feminist Fightback and also amazing activist people. One of the things that make them get physical together is Reproductive Rights Action, basically is to stop extremist religious people from going to abortion clinics and scream horrible things to the women and men who is going inside. They have meetings with nice literature, poetry and outflow in a safe space. More recently their work against Jack the Ripper museum in East London was tireless, in the feminist point of view such serial killer shouldn’t have a place that looks like a memorial when in fact he killed a lot of women in East London.
Protests outside newly opened Jack the Ripper Museum in London in August. (Image: Demotix/Guy Corbishley)
Here in East London we can also find the East End Women’s Museum, it aim is to “represent and amplify women’s histories from the East End” as we can see on their website. The Feminist Fightback used to have a Walking Tour to explore Sylvia Pankhurst and the radical women of East London. At the moment they organize cinema nights, rrriot dancing time and obviously a network of support and information for victims based wherever in London. These are non profit projects, therefore, everything that’s is done is exclusively with participants’ donations and their belief that this network of support and rights worth their help either economically speaking or by their presence and continue management of free-time to create events.
Protest against Jack the Ripper museum in Cable Street | London News Pictures ©under licence to London News Pictures
In feminist groups’ actions against extremist groups, rape or sexist society they choose to use words, music, and body art or even poetry instead of violence. You can find rrriot music, parents dancing with kids in front of the churches where people that will try to silent people in abortion clinics are, words written on their bodies, tape in their mouth, red paint pretending is blood among so many other things. Once again, the idea of violence in feminist groups is the result of the media and the selected news that goes worldwide. Like other groups you can find extremism in feminism but in East London that’s not anyone’s memory.
In East London we can find a lot of feminism history as a proper movement, women amazing work or even women terrible endings as the Jack the Ripper’s victims. This part of London doesn’t show how much impact it has in women liberation or in women fights when you walk silent in the streets but it certainly has and will continue to have as long as we support equality.