All posts edited by Madeline Ricchiuto.

Thursday, May 9, 2013

Extreme Porn and the Law - What Can Be Done and What Should Be Done

Yesterday, I attended a seminar at Durham University on extreme pornography and the law. Speakers and attendees came from all over the UK, coming from universities, rape counseling centers, or as people who had interaction with the UK laws on extreme porn.

The seminar started by exploring some of the ways the current laws for England and Wales, set out in the Criminal Justice and Immigration Act 2008 (CJIA), are misunderstood or misapplied. Professor Erika Rackley discussed the failure of the law to include images portraying rape under the umbrella of extreme porn.

Following Rackley there was a presentation by Simon Walsh, a barrister in London, and his interaction with the extreme porn laws. His presentation highlighted how easily the current laws are able to be misused and abused. His case exemplified how such laws can be used as a malicious attack on sexual minorities.

Thursday, May 2, 2013

MichFest, Safe Spaces, Transphobia?

For some of you who haven't heard, there is a yearly event in Michigan for women. It's called the Michigan Womyn's Music Festival (MichFest). This festival attracts women from all around the country to celebrate their womanhood. It started in 1976 and has been running every August since. The festival not only is a gathering for music though. It is a gathering of feminism and learning and bonding. There are many group activities and everything is done by women; set up, break down, organizing, planning, everything.

That everything is done by women is an important thing to note. It's part of what makes this event such a powerful statement. Women can, and do, do everything that men can. Women are powerful. The exclusion of men in this is done purposefully to empower women. I have been told that is a great experience.