Black History Month, Black Women White Uni?, Events, Projects, Projects and Campaigns

#BWWU: BME Woman White Uni – The Landscape of KCL is changing.

KCL Intersectional Feminist Society invites you to the “BME Women, White Uni” conference. The conference functions as a part of their work to celebrate the achievements of –  as well highlight the experiences of – Black and Ethnic Minorities women at the university and in wider society. Click here to request (free) tickets right now.

A Quick History.

The project began last October, after an effort to highlight the low visibility of BME women on campus (whether in photographs of alumni on the front of various King’s buildings, or otherwise), and quickly evolved into a campaign to tell the stories of the BME women at King’s.

The photographs and interviews from this will be displayed online and around campus during Black History Month. In an effort to broaden the kinds of conversations that we were having, from discussion on a lack of institutional support and representation, to the kind of work that women of colour are pioneering in various fields, we’re hosting a conference at the end of October.

To learn more about #BWWU, click here to watch a video of our society president and one of our society co-vice presidents discuss how the project develop.

The Conference Time Table.
9:45-10am: Introduction
(Hareem Ghani – KCL IFemSoc Co-Vice President, Samia Gundkalli – KCL IFemSoc BME Officer)

10am-11:30am: Introductory Panel: BME Women in Academia
(Niaomi Collett, Candice Carboo, Dr Deborah Gabriel and Professor Heidi Mirza – chaired by Dr Stephani Hatch)

11am-12pm: Workshops – “Why is My Curriculum White?”
(run by King’s Ethnic Minority Association) and “Craftivism” (run by KCLSU)

11:40am-12:40pm: BME Women in the Arts
(Cecile Emeke, Aisha Richards, Dr Shirley Thompson – chaired by Hana Riaz)

1:40pm-2:40pm: BME Women in Tech
(Antonia Anni, Dr Angela Martinez Dy, Natalie Nzeyimana – chaired by Sunayana Bhargava)

2:10pm-3:10pm: Workshops – “Why is My Curriculum White?” and “Craftivism”

2:50-3:50- BME Women, the Body and Institutions
(Dr Caroline Bressey and Dr Sadiah Qureshi – chaired by Shruti Iyer)

3:50-4pm: Closing Speech
(Shruti Iyer – KCL IFemSoc Co-Vice President, Rachel Williams – KCLSU’s Vice President of Welfare and Community)

All panels will take place in NHH L1 and other activities in the ground floor rooms surrounding it. Lunch will be provided.

Tickets are available here: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/bme-women-white-uni-conference-tickets-18923400400

Any questions please email kclfemsoc@gmail.com!

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Events

Intersectionality 101 & Zine Making – how it all went down.

Intersectionality 101.

This was our first event of the year, and was the centre piece of our fresher’s events. We wanted to provide an engaging and powerful event that would help those new to intersectional feminism understand the basics, but also create something interesting and substantial for those who have been working with us – and in their own intersectional circles – for years.

For those of you who weren’t there, our speakers included:

  • Dr. Nina Power, a Senior Lecturer in Philosophy at the University of Roehampton. She is the author of One Dimensional Woman (2009) and regularly writes for various publications.
  • Susuana Antubam is an activist, who is currently Women’s Officer at NUS, and was the Women’s Officer at ULU last year.
  • (Unfortunately Malia Bouattia the current the Black Student’s Officer at NUS was unable to make it)

Through the eminence of our speakers alone, we knew this event was going to be good, but my’gosh were we impressed by the turn out! With over 150 clamouring to get in – many more having to be turned down at the door due to space constrictions –  we were bowled over by the enthusiasm and excitement of our iFemSoc members and the level of energy and engagement the event as a whole gave out.

Our proudest moments was hearing feedback from our attendees with comments such as:
It’s really cool to see a femsoc which is not built entirely from a privileged white background and ideology, and be represented as such in its committee and events.” (From Stewart)
It was so engaging! It really made me think” (Friend of a iFemSoc committee member)
“I’m so glad I came, thank you for putting it on, I didn’t really know what intersectionality was before” (iFemSoc member)

So chuffed by this glorious praise, we are already eager for more! Did you come along to the event? What was your favourite part? How did you find it? What can we do next time to make it even better! Send in your comments, and we’ll add them to this page & use it to guide us in all future events.

Zine Making – Body Image.

A smaller and more intimate event, but by no means less effective, our zine making session saw iFemSoc getting crafty with glue, handy with sissors and even the occasional sprinkle of glitter. The theme was body image, a starting point that may have drawn many of us to feminism in the first place, but also continues to occupy the minds and thoughts of anyone navigating today’s image-obsessed world. Armed with glue, paper and magazines, our members took on powerful questions such as: how does aesthetic roles affect those of varying genders? How does race, and colonialism, interact with the body image of young women? What does is mean to be interested in fashion? In beauty? In yourself?

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The result was some of the most powerful images I’ve ever seen, see below for just a small example of the work (the rest will be put on facebook soon, and we’ll be polling ideas on what exactly we’re planning to do with them next). What began as a space for self exploration and intimate groups of discussion, flowed into a liturgy of expression, liberation and art. As you can see, the topic of body image provided a very rich and varied interpretation, tapping into personal but also inter-personal feelings of representation, alienation, contradiction and celebration. Many of the works go together, or can be read as a story, where as others provided stand alone and breath taking insight into how people see themselves and their bodies, through the lens of society’s perception of body image.

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We’ve already had cries from many members asking for another session, and with so much material, inspiration & enthusiasm for another go – we’ll definitely be putting together another zine making session soon.

When & what? That’s up to you! Are you ready to make some zines in the next few weeks? Do you think that the topic of body image should be explored some more? Is there something more specific or different we should focus on? Perhaps a response, or development to a zine or piece of art you’ve read or seen recently? If you have answers to any of those questions – or simply got something to say about zine making – get in touch! We’d love to host another event, all we need is you!

(And maybe more glue, because we got through a lot of it last time)

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