Gender and Sexuality

Description/Abstract of your Event: 
Wondering why we're experiencing abortion bans and attacks on birth control? The birth rate is plunging in the U.S.: It's a spontaneous birth strike! In other countries, panic over low birth rates has led governments to underwrite childbearing and childrearing with generous universal programs, but in the U.S., women have not yet realized the potential of our bargaining position. When we do, it will lead to new strategies for improving the difficult working conditions U.S. parents now face when raising children. Join Jenny Brown, in discussion with Laura Tanenbaum, on her new book, Birth Strike: The Hidden Fight over Women’s Work (PM Press, 2019).
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Location: 
None
Description/Abstract of your Event: 
Screening of OffCenter. OffCenter (2019) is an American, experimental documentary directed by Aylin Sözen and Cesar Jaralillo, emphasizing the attitudes and experiences of unconventional African-American, Latino, gay, and transgender people in Texarkana, a twin city in East Texas and Arkansas. It explores the racial, sexual, and gender identity of five central interviewees rebelling against Southern conservatism. Through firsthand perspectives, the subjects reclaim their identity, acknowledging the importance of affirming blackness, afrocentrism, the preservation of native civilization, and LGBTQ objectives in the rural South. The film merges low-fi cinema with a poetic, cinéma-vérité style to portray the existence of marginalized people, their encounters with racism, sexism, homophobia and transphobia.
Description/Abstract of your Event: 
Our vision of Freedom Dreaming: A Call to Imagine envisions a world without racism, sexism, homophobia, xenophobia, classism, etc. We recognize the impact that these multiple and intersecting structures of oppression can negatively have on individuals lives. We believe in elevating the voices of those from marginalized communities who experience oppression in order to call attention these inequalities. Inspired by Robin Kelley's "Freedom Dreams" we have created a platform, teaching materials, and structured workshops aimed at producing a communal vision for freedom through the radical imaginary. We aim to build empowerment through fostering safe spaces online, and networking like-minded marginalized folks together. If given the opportunity, Left Forum is an incredible platform to extend our reach in extending our mission and inspiring youth to express their thoughts without the fear of being silenced. Furthermore, we hope to inspire individuals to take action against these injustices by recognizing them to move towards a more just and free society. As the dreams of freedom continue this digital campaign builds on the community program that came before. Visitors to the workshop are encouraged to create, reflect, and engage with fellow dreamers in a supportive and creative environment both physically and digitally. This workshop will engage with the concept of Freedom Dreaming from multiple angles, including visual art, sound, and personal reflection to demonstrate the numerous ways in which one can Freedom Dream and what that might look like in a classroom setting and beyond. Our goal is for all participants to leave with at least one personal and communal Freedom Dream as well as connections, resources, and action steps to move their dreams forward.
Description/Abstract of your Event: 
The political crisis of the capitalist world embodied by the rise of authoritarianism and populism around the world has been met with resistance internationally. Women have played a disproportionate role in these struggles from Sudan to the West Virginia teachers strikes. The Caribbean has been no exception and the rise of the #LifeinLeggings movement throughout the Caribbean as well as the prominence of feminist groups like the Tambourine Army in Jamaica is testament to this. Many Caribbean countries have a hostile atmosphere towards LGBTQ people, these states tend to still have colonial era anti-cross dressing and buggery laws on the books. There has been resistance to this in recent times evinced by the striking down of the anti-cross dressing law in Guyana and the buggery law in Trinidad as well as the rise in visibility of the LGBTQ population through daring Pride parades, some held for the first time in the last few years. These struggles have had important cultural reflections such as legendary Trinidad & Tobago singer Calypso Rose’s “Leave me Alone” song which stood as an anthem against sexual harassment. The emergence of the “Lost Tribe” carnival band with openly gay Indo-Trini director Valmiki Maharaj was yet another such incursion of previously excluded oppressed people into the popular culture of the Caribbean. This panel aims to explore the historical antecedents which gave rise to the oppression of women and the LGBTQ population in the Caribbean. The panel will also look at the contemporary situation while giving details of the recent struggles and how they intersect with each other and the broader anti-colonial and anti-imperialist radical tradition in the Caribbean.
Description/Abstract of your Event: 
A farmworker leader from the Coalition of Immokalee Workers (CIW) will share the history of the organization, conditions faced by farmworkers in the U.S. agricultural industry — including abuses such as sexual harassment and forced labor — and the transformative changes now in effect in the U.S. tomato industry as a result of the award-winning Fair Food Program in setting new farm labor standards, implementing fair wages, and eliminating abuses through its groundbreaking model of Worker Driven Social Responsibility. The workshop will also focus on the models through which the CIW has built power-- from the early days of general strikes and labor stoppages in the tomato fields of Southwest Florida, to the Campaign for Fair Food with successful boycotts of powerful multinational corporations, and then to the implementation of new worker directed standards in the agricultural industry. The workshop will be facilitated in both Spanish and English. There will be a question and answer session in which attendees can engage with farmworker leaders on their experiences as farmworkers, the movement for Fair Food and how they can be involved in the movement for farmworker justice.
Location: 
NYC
Description/Abstract of your Event: 
Throughout recorded history, sex workers have not only existed, but have fought for their rights - the right to pursue their livelihood without harassment, the right not to be stigmatized, and the right to be taken seriously as agents of progressive change. From the Paris Commune of 1871 - when anarchist Louise Michel organized armed brigades of sex workers to fight alongside their fellow Communards against the invading Prussian army - until today, organized sex workers have not avoided militancy. Speakers will address the ripe opportunites that have emerged recently to enact decriminalization and organization of sex work both in New York and elsewhere.
Description/Abstract of your Event: 
At this historical juncture, the world is at a very dangerous point. The Doomsday Clock showing the risk of nuclear destruction of the world/humanity is now at 2 minutes to midnight. This is particularly meaningful because people who set the clock, atomic scientists, are well aware of the danger to the world. The US is associated with most of this danger. It has the biggest accumulation of wealth in the hands of individuals, yet according to the recent UN report, 40 million Americans live in poverty. The US has counter-terrorism activities in 76 countries, contributes to the humanitarian crises in Yemen and Palestine, has nearly 1000 foreign military bases around the world, and is ignoring the efforts of 122 countries in the UN to ban nuclear weapons. Yet, there are hopeful signs: Moral Mondays/Poor Peoples Movement; #meToo; #TimesUp; high school youths from Parkland stopping the NRA; the Families Belong Together movement. There is resistance rising up all over the US and the world. Along with the greatest repression there is the greatest resistance at the present time. But we need to be educated, to know which side we are on, to stand up. Women and children are most oppressed, and men, particularly white men have been oppressive for hundreds of years. Women for Racial and Economic Equality (WREE) was a progressive women’s peace activist organization from 1975 to 1995 that approached peace through the lens of racial and class issues. The Women’s Commission of the Movement for People’s Democracy is facilitating the revival of WREE as a vital, national organization. The panel will discuss the issues that the revived WREE will address, as well as suggesting appropriate activism in line with its vision of “Women leading the human race in a powerful movement in our communities to advocate for social and economic equality in collaboration with other women’s peace/labor organizations”. Panel members will discuss how WREE can address the issues of women in the workforce, racism, sexism, and world peace. Discussion will focus on women’s role in saving humanity, and men, from their own stupidity and arrogant behavior. A principal source about WREE is Harriet Hyman Alonso’s book, Peace As a Women’s Issue. As noted in the book, this is a class and race issue, not a man/woman issue. This class war divides us by race, gender, gender orientation, ethnicity, religion, nationality to distract us from focusing on the struggle as a class issue. WREE was destroyed because among all of the women’ organizations, it had more class consciousness than others. We want all to join in this struggle and join with WREE.
Location: 
LA
Description/Abstract of your Event: 
In the culture wars of contemporary America,intimate partner abuse ---often referred to as "domestic violence"---is at epidemic proportions throughout the society. This panel will analyze the scope and consequences of this epidemic as well as offer programmatic suggestions as to how to deal with such violence, both on an inter-personal and on a class, racial and cultural level.
Location: 
LA
Description/Abstract of your Event: 
The reputation of men as parents isn't a good one. The reasons are many and not without merit. "MEN ARE PARENTS, TOO!" looks the recent findings involving the importance of men as parents and it examines current notions of "gender equality and justice" between men and women.