In many situations, women are typically treated as victims devoid of power and free will rather than as survivors who exercise their agency even within the limits of their contexts and spaces. Enter the police and “rescue”-oriented organizations and institutions, who’s posturing as strong, trustworthy actors who only want to help belies their machismo, savior complex, and even actual role and participation in reproducing systems and structures that systemically and systematically oppress non-men and other marginalized sectors.
ABOLISYON!, an abolitionist working group dedicated to promoting abolitionist politics in the archipelago (Philippines) currently hosted a two-part series online conversation about Anti- Carceral Feminism. In these online learning conversations, they have addressed the current responses we have for confronting domestic violence within our communities and how we treat sex workers, and what alternatives we can use or create within our communities instead of relying on or advocating for more policing, prosecution, and incarceration.
The first part of the series focuses on confronting domestic violence without the police and can be found below. This conversation was led by Victoria Law, a freelance journalist whose work focuses on the intersection of incarceration, gender, and resistance.
The second part focuses on sex work and the rescue industry. This conversation was led by Sharmila Parmanand and Purple Rose. Sharmila Parmanand has a PhD in Multi-Disciplinary Gender Studies from the University of Cambridge and her doctoral research examined ‘sex trafficking’ discourses and interventions in the Philippines from a critical perspective. Purple Rose is a Filipinx Trans Woman who promotes an abolitionist and anti-carceral feminist politics and is an activist.
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* On a side note, being able to write about this and publish this on our website makes everything we do worth it. Thank you to the amazing people behind Abolisyon for using our platform to get the word out!