BlogHer '14 Closing Keynote: Meet Us at the Intersection of Race, Gender, Feminism & the Internet
For many years we've programmed conversations at BlogHer conferences that talk about leveraging our online platforms for good. Those conversations are designed to be equal measures inspiration and instigation. This year, in fact, we have an amazing break-out panel scheduled entitled Going Beyond "Armchair Activism." Because there are certainly those who think conversations on the web and "hashtag activism" don't really effect change.
Yet, when we reviewed this past year in our online community, it seemed undeniable that the online platforms we rely on were often the place where the most active and actionable conversations were happening—at the often uncomfortable intersection of race, gender, and feminism. Online is certainly where mistakes got made, called out, and punished. But it's also where different perspectives met .. .and sometimes found common ground.
Want a refresher?
#solidarityisforwhitewomen #notyourasiansidekick #cancelcolbert #dangerousblackkids #yesallwomen #yesallwhitewomen
The Internet amplified those conversations, and sometimes the Internet's reach and volume is surely for the better: Exposing us to differing perspectives. Breaking down boundaries that geography and class impose without mercy in the "real" world.
But sometimes there's no question the Internet is. Not. Helping. The vitriol. The echo chambers. The lack of context, tone, and social cues in 140 characters. They make hard conversations harder.
But they are hard because they are important, and this year those important conversations dominated the Internet.
In total, those conversations are about “intersectionality,” a term (coined by Black legal scholar Kimberlé Crenshaw in 1989) that captures how multiple forms of oppression, multiple –isms, can be experienced simultaneously, as in an intersection, when traffic can come at you from four different directions.
We've lined up an amazing panel of women who bring diverse perspectives to this conversation.
Please join these leading voices:
Cheryl Contee, start-up co-founder and co-founder of Jack & Jill Politics
Feminista Jones, BlogHer's own Sex & Relationships editor, who has been at the center of some raging Internet debates.
Grace Hwang Lynch, BlogHer's own News & Politics editor, who also blogs about her mixed-race Asian family at Hapamama.
Kelly Wickham, manifesto-maker at MochaMomma.
Kristen Howerton, regularly raising her voice on the intersection of race and gender and faith at Rage Against the Minivan.
Natalia Oberti Noguera, working for change within the power structure as founder of the Pipeline Fellowship.
Patrice Lee, a conservative woman of color who immigrated to the U.S. as a child and represents an oft-unheard perspective.
Our hope is to host a conversation where we can be real, we can get uncomfortable, we can walk a mile in other women's shoes, and—most of all—we can walk away feeling like we know how to be better and do better. Understand more and speak up more. Together, we can extinguish the flame-war-ridden Web and be a part of the powerful and boundary-breaking Web. Are we all in?