Review: 2018 FWF’s Writing Violence, Writing Change25 June 2018
Content warning: mentions of sexual assaults
Feminist Writers Festival 2018 started off on the right note with Harvey Weinstein’s arrest occurring on the first day of the festival, hours before the first event of the second day, Writing Violence, Writing Change. Held on 26 May 2018 at Queen Victoria Women’s Centre, the panel session was spearheaded by Tasneem Chopra, an independent Cross Cultural Consultant who advocates on diversity, identity and racism across the public and private sector, Tara Moss, an acclaimed author with 11 bestselling books, and moderated by Jessamy Gleeson, a passionate activist, academic and feminist wrangler.
The two-hour session was split into two segments, the first being a discussion led by prompts while the second segment was a Question-And-Answer session. In a room filled with women and non-binary people, it felt like a safe space where everyone was learning from each other and discussing how we can save the world from its horribleness because men cannot behave.
Topics covered ranged from checking ourselves when writing online, articles and books, approaching survivors without re-traumatising them and self-care for writers. While there could be more room for the panel to delve deeper into each topic, the insights given compensates for the lack due to time constraints.
The theme of representation has been repeated throughout the session, where the women’s voice and perspective must be placed at the forefront. This is coupled with careful language when writing so as to bring change to the narrative that has been set up.
You can view the livestream for this session on Feminist Writers Festival’s YouTube channel, here. Do note there were some discussions and questions asked that mentioned explicitly regarding sexual assaults.