Initial thoughts from some organisers

You can submit your thoughts and reflections (and please do! we’ve only had responses from about 10% of attendees), but here are some of ours, whilst we collate all the feedback we’re getting…

There were some great moments and workshops, and we want to build up a record of what worked well.

So if you learned about new concepts and struggles, about how oppression and privilege impact on different groups, made contacts you have the enthusiasm to build on, encountered new ideas and activity that inspired you, thought about how to move anarcha-feminism forward as a political force, or have any other positive reflections about the sessions or day in general, please send us your thoughts (either via afem[at]afed.org.uk or on social media).

These will help us to plan future events because – a surprise to ourselves – we are full of enthusiam for further events.

Having said this, there were serious negatives, as we are all aware and have reflected on elsewhere and will continue to do so.

Most damagingly, was the intervention of transphobes or TERFs (trans exclusionary radical feminists). These breached our Safer Spaces policy and undermined our Inclusion Policy. Much has been said, and will be said here (not least in that we will shortly issue a stament as organisers). We want also to flag up how traumatic this was not only for many people attending the conference, but also for ourselves. Several of us were so upset by this dynamic that we have temorarily taken time out from AFem organising group to try to recover without triggering memories.

Our general happiness about what was achieved on the day is coupled with anger about how easy it was for a tiny handful of privileged people to impose their bigoted, backward-looking and damaging ideas. We say this because as well as issuing a statement, we will be taking the issue very seriously and tightening up our processes in future. In order to do this, we want your thoughts too on how to do this.

Finally, please take the project forward! Organise your own events and activies under the AFem banner, as long as it agrees with our policies. But please protect yourself structurally and personally against people who think the anarcha-feminist movement is theirs rather than belonging to all gender-oppressed people. And send us your reports/links so we can gather momentum in transforming the anarchist movement and the whole world.

For more on how to contact us, and our feedback form for the event, see our post How was AFem2014 for you?

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