(this review was originally published as a guest post on Swansea Uni blog, The Siren)
The Swansea Feminist Network Fundraiser is held as a showcase for women musicians and singers and promotes the huge talent that these women have. Women performers are often under-valued and under- represented, especially in the rock and alternative genre. We want to give these women an opportunity to show off their skills and to give the audience a chance to see how women can perform.
The event was held to raise funds for SFN to enable the group to carry on its work in raising awareness and campaigning on issues that affect women and hinder gender equality. We are a feminist activist group that organises campaigns and events. Previous campaigns have included organising the Pro- Choice demonstration outside Parliament in July this year to protest against the proposed Nadine Dorries Bill that would have set back abortion policy in the UK by decades. We also hold ‘Feminist Fridays’ which campaign against the ‘Lad’s Mag’ and ‘Sex Object’ culture in a fun way and to spread grassroots feminist activism. Different members of the SFN have specialist areas of interest including domestic abuse, the sex industry, Female Genital Mutilation, pro-choice movement, feminist zines and violence against women for example.
The funds will also go towards paying for the use of space and a desk in Swansea Women’s Centre. SFN believes in the importance of women only space because it is in women-only space that a woman’s voice can be heard on her own terms, where she is free from male opinions, free of the spectre of patriarchal judgement, that in mixed space denounce, silence, talk over, appropriate, or ridicule her voice. Women-only space remains relevant because women need space free of male influence and control in order to forge our own politics on our own terms. Otherwise those dominant male voices and values will continue to devalue us, leaving us where we started.
The funds will also go to help sustain the cost of producing the SFN Zine ‘Pandora Press’. Pandora Press exists to give women a space to express opinions that are so often overlooked in the mainstream media. It is a voice for women to air their feminist thought in a safe space. Any women who wants to contribute to the Zine can do with articles, poems, drawings etc.
Future events will include another Music Fundraiser, a Feminist Workshop Day, Feminist Fridays, International Women’s Day Event, Trips to Feminist Conferences, theatre & cinema. We will also continue with our successful Radical Feminist Book Reading Group, pub meetings and Art & Craft Sessions.
Written by Ali Morris. All images by Rebecca Gwynn photography.