7th National Conference of Women’s Movements

7th National Conference of Women’s Movements – After a gap of nine years, the next National Conference is being held in Kolkata, West Bengal. To register for the conference, visit the conference website, or the Jagori website. Contact details: JAGORI, B-114 Shivalik, Malviya Nagar, New Delhi- 110017, Email.

Excerpt: … Towards a Politics of Justice: Affirming Diversities, Resisting Divisiveness, 9-12 September 2006, Venue: Salt Lake Stadium, Kolkata.

On 9th September, 2006, the city of Kolkata in India will welcome over 2000 delegates to the 7th National Conference of Women’s Movements, a platform for women to come together to share, dialogue, debate and sharpen their politics while deepening their understanding of and responses to issues and strategies. It will also provide the space to forge friendships and extend solidarity to each other.

Each National Conference has been a collective stock taking of the ever-changing political contexts within which issues get continuously redefined. Over the years, these conferences have enabled women from diverse contexts to to share ideas, concerns, politics, campaigns and to give visibility to myriad continuing struggles for justice, equality and liberation.

There is an incredible energy, spirit and dynamism when so many women who are struggling, individually and collectively, meet in one space. “For me, the National Conference, going to Ranchi, being part of a crowd of 4000 women – all kinds of women from all over the country – was really a high. Without a space like that, how do you feel the realness of being part of a movement?” says Manjima, “Such landmark events are necessary to sustain the movement and would truly be an eye-opening experience for young activists in the movement.” [A participant at the Ranchi conference in 1997, as quoted in 'Living Feminisms', Jagori, 2004].

Although women share common interests, struggles, and goals, it is also true that social constructs such as caste, class, religion, ethnicity, disability and sexuality create multiple identities for women. The Seventh National Conference is committed to recognising these multiple identities and commonalities while resisting the marginalisation, divisions and contradictions created by the politics of identity. The themes of the 7th National Conference are Patriarchy, Globalisation, Fundamentalism and Casteism.

The organisers: The National Conference is organised by a working group that is called the National Coordination Committee (NCC). The members of this group are autonomous women’s groups, formed in the late 1970s and early 1980s, which began their political journey with the anti rape, dowry murders and amniocentesis campaigns. These groups define autonomy in terms of maintaining institutional and ideological independence from political parties, governments and funding agencies. The NCC is not a registered or a permanent body but is re-convened prior to each conference and collectively inducts new members.

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