Over seventy feminist and trans advocates and artists met in São Paulo for a week of cross-movement strategy dialogue to tackle the harms of the global anti-gender movement.
We came together to focus on coalition and alliance building for feminist and trans solidarity strengthening. We employed art to humanise the debate and explore new avenues of understanding the phenomenon and how we can respond to it, maintaining the links between advocacy and art.
JUNTES participants and partners share a photo in San Paulo, Brazil.
Our programme notably featured healing sessions to crucially remind us of the importance of mental health, especially when dealing with such heavy topics. From dancing on the roof to live drums to embodied rest and breathing practices, we ensured that we gave our minds and bodies space to breathe. We live in a moment of extreme hostility and increased polarisation, which calls for a critical reflection on our advocacy work and creating coordinated cross-movement strategies to gain social and political support from the movable middle. And we had fun while at it, with an entire Risco festival queer arts festival at night to keep us busy!
When the anti-rights and anti-gender opposition come for us, we know that they can never take away our joy. Laughter, happiness, and rest are our resistance, not to mention critical to sustaining us as advocates and artists and our movements at large! Many thanks to all who participated and our partners Outburst Queer Arts, Feminist Foreign Policy, Casa Chama and Risco festival.
Next step: JUNTES part 2, moving from São Paulo to Belfast for the Outburst Queer Arts Festival, 10-18 November 2023! This festival is open to the public, where we will curate more spaces for international dialogue and exchanges to counter the anti-gender opposition with an audience predominantly of artists and the public.
If you are interested in this conversation, let's see you there in Belfast!