Within the Heinrich Böll Foundation's global programmes for a just, peaceful, and sustainable world, gender democracy is defined as a cross-cutting task. Consequently, the Foundation is also interested in comprehending attempts and movements that oppose greater equality between men and women and respect for individual life choices. In order to discuss strategies for overcoming such ultra-conservative resistance to gender equality, our offices in Belgrade, Kiev, Moscow, Prague, Tbilisi, and Warsaw invited scholars and activists to attend our third International Gender Workshop.
Held in September 2014 in Berlin, it assembled participants from Armenia, Belarus, the Czech Republic, Georgia, Hungary, Poland, Russia, Serbia, Slovakia, and Ukraine.
The concept of «backlash» refers to perceived setbacks and deteriorations in the relations between (and among) men and women. Its proponents assume that gender equality and LGBTI rights are on the decline all over the developed world, or that there is at least a significant increase in rabid attacks against them. As a catchword it encompasses a seemingly odd medley of activities pursued by a multitude of different local initiatives all over Central and Eastern Europe, all of which strongly promote tradition over equality. In many cases these groups appear to be backed and inspired both by influential US-American «pro life» organisations as well as the Kremlin's «Gayrope» propaganda, which aims to discredit the European Union as a place of moral decline. As you will see, the contributors to this publication disagree as to what extent the concept of «backlash» presents a valid instrument for interpreting regional or global trends; nevertheless, the concept was used as a common starting point for reflecting on recent developments and possible strategies.
Table of contents:
- Preface and introduction: Gender/Backlash. In the Wake of yet Another Conservative Revolution - Gert Röhrborn, Katja Giebel
- The Fight for Public Space - Ekaterine Aghdomelashvili
- Empowering Women Against Discrimination in Labour Relations in Georgia - Anna Arganashvili
- Tools for Change: Collevtive Actions of Womens's Rights Activists in Armenia - Anna Nikoghosyan
- Forwards or Backwards? Strategies to Overcome Gender Backlash in Hungary - Borbála Juhász
- Love and Fear. Argumentative Strategies Against Gender Equality in Slovakia - Zuzana Mad'arová
- "The War on Gender" from a Transnational Perspective - Lessons for Feminist Strategising - Elżbieta Korolczuk
- Cultural War or Business as Usual? Recent Instances and the Historical Origins of the Backlash Against Womens's Rights and Sexual Rights in Poland - Magdalena Grabowska
- The Grey Emancipation Zone - Tamara Zlobina
- Gender Issues in Ukraine: Werethe EuroMaidan Protests Patriarchal or Egalitarian? - Tamara Martsenyuk
- Limitations of Research into Gender Inequalities in Belarus - Volha Platrukovich
- We Can Do It! Empowering Women, Challenging Conservative Backlash, and Combating Gender Stereotypes in Czech REpublic - Jana Smiggels Kavková & Veronika Sprincová
- Feminist Practices in Contemporary Serbia - Jelena Višnjić