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Challenges and Possibilities for Political Feminism: The Case of Sweden. Linnéa Bruno Feministiskt initiativ. Feminism – ”the missing dimension in an old political landscape”, our independent ideological point of departure . Outline.

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challenges and possibilities for political feminism the case of sweden

Challenges and Possibilitiesfor Political Feminism:The Case of Sweden

Linnéa Bruno

Feministiskt initiativ

Feminism – ”the missing dimension in an oldpolitical landscape”, our independent ideologicalpoint of departure.
  • Feminism today: a growing and vibrant movement. The end of the backlash?
  • Issues, strategies and successes of second and thirdwave feminism 1965-2000.
  • Women’ssheltermovement
  • Developments in Academia
  • Activism: Cyber feminism and art
  • State Feminism: Claimingpolitical power
  • Our allies
  • Conclusion and discussion
feminism today a growing and vibrant movement the end of the backlash
Feminism today: a growing and vibrant movement. The end of the backlash?

No sign of a ’sterialized’ feminist ’movementwithoutmovement’ – quite the opposite:

Everyday, truly feminist articles are published in newspapers and online magazines

Everyweek, a number of manifestations, seminars and conferences

Feminist issues are highlighted in public and private theatres and museums, comics, music, performance art etc

second wave feminism in sweden 1965 1980
Second wave feminism in Sweden 1965-1980

The ”unhappymarriage” of marxism and feminism: critique of onedimensionalclassanalysis

Radical feminism: domestic and sexualviolence on the agenda


Abortion and contraceptives

From 1975: the women’ssheltermovement

From 1980: political backlash butacademic progress


Consciosnessrisinggroups: ”The personal is political”

Demonstrations in the streeets

Separatism and emphasis on ”sisterhood”

Swedish second wave feminists claimingdaycare for all children and women’sliberation to be recognized as equallyimportant to classstruggle
third wave feminism 1990 2000
Thirdwave feminism 1990-2000

A response to a decrease in femalepolitical representation

Debates on the challenges of diversity: ”identitypolitics”, queer and lesbian critique of ”sisterhood”

Feminstbecame a hipidentity

Feminist selfdefence, hotlines and empowermentcenters for younggirls: demands on bodilyintegrity

Rise of state feminism: largegovernmentalinquiriesinformed by feminist research

Gendermainstreaming – and backlash

Severalimportant reforms:

”Daddy’smonths” – towardsequal parental responsibilities

A new crime: gross violation of women’sintegrity

Criminalization of buying sex

Consensus in Parliament on genderequality as politicalgoal

Fittstim – an influentialcollection of angry, sad and funnytestimonies from young Swedish feminists of the 1990-ies.

GenderEquality – an explicit politicalgoal in Sweden”Women and men shallhave the same power to shape society and theirownlives”

  • Equal representation in private, public and civil sector
  • Economic equalitythroughout the life course
  • Equal distribution of unpaiddomestic and care work
  • Ending of men’sviolenceagainstwomen
current observations in swedish feminist movement
Current observations in Swedish feminist movement
  • Cyber feminism:

Young activistsengage in debates online, sharearticles, films and images.

Feminist page ”Supersnippan” has 36 000 likes on facebook - morethananypolitical party.

  • Increasedawareness of intersectionsexism-racism-classoppression
  • Racialized feminists takinginitiatives
  • Humour is an effectiveweapon
Activists dress August Strindberg in pink, as a protest againstmarginalization of femalewriters and artists.
possible and actual allies
Possible and actual allies

Unions – especially for nurses, teachers and othersworking in femaledominated and underpaid public sector




Anti-racistorganizations and Asylum right movement

Children’s rights movement

Organizations lobbying for rights of disabledpeople


conclusion and discussion
Conclusion and discussion
  • State feminism has beensuccesful in manyrespects – now is the time to step forward
  • We are not demanding the right to exploitothers and the planet like men do – we are questioning that norm and order
  • Feminism is needed in Academia, civil society, arts as well as in politicalassemblies
  • Demandinggenderequality and social justiceimpliestakingourselvesseriosly, using the rights and scope for action wehave – thanks to ourforerunners
  • Weowe it to ourchildren