On feminist militancy, collectives, and care: an ethnography on a contemporary Italian feminist movement
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In this thesis, I consider feminist militancy and organizing as a political and discursive microcosm, an opportunity to enhearten the revolutionary spirit of feminist thinking and envision new and subversive social relations. To do this, I center and deeply engage with the narratives and reflections gathered through interviewing former members of the feminist movement Non Una Di Meno. Non Una Di Meno is an Italian and transnational feminist organization established in 2016 in Rome and currently has multiple chapters across the nation. It was inspired by the Argentinian movement Ni Una Menos which was founded in 2015 as a response to overwhelming cases of femicide and gender-based violence. Activists, advocates, and militants are to me some of the most fascinating and inspiring subjects as they continuously try to embody what is yet unexisting. The encounters with these feminist activists have shed light on the critical status of today’s political militancy and organizing in Italy, its challenges and pitfalls, and the need for stronger and more intimate interpersonal connections and practices of care and solidarity that would reflect in practice the type of social relations integral to the society that they are fighting to contrive. Moreover, they provided insight into the mundane and personal dimensions of feminist becoming and resistance, how their identity as feminist militants has shaped and changed their lives and their perceptions of the world, as well as their expectations for the envisioning and adaptation of the feminist principles and objectives in daily life. To expand on the activists’ understandings and reflections, this project will engage with pertinent scholarly contributions which will primarily focus on the becoming of the feminist political subject, the connections between militancy and relationality, and worldmaking through care and community building. This entwining between personal reflection and theory is meant to capture the material and ethereal composition of feminist living and thinking and contribute to envisioning new and radical ways of relating and strengthening coalitions in feminist spaces and beyond.
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