Source: In These Times
Welcome to Interviews for Resistance. We’re now into the second year of the Trump administration, and the last year has been filled with ups and downs, important victories, successful holding campaigns, and painful defeats. We’ve learned a lot, but there is always more to learn, more to be done. In this now-weekly series, we talk with organizers, agitators, and educators, not only about how to resist, but how to build a better world.
Cinzia Arruzza: I am Cinzia Arruzza. I am one of the national organizers of the International Women’s Strike.
Tithi Bhattacharya: This is Tithi Bhattacharya. I teach at Purdue University. I was one of the national organizers for the International Women’s Strike last year and I am doing the same this year.
Sarah Jaffe: Let’s start off talking a little bit about this year’s strike. What is being planned and why did you decide to do it again this year?
TB: I think everybody knows the context of last year’s strike, which started with an extraordinary level of international coordination between feminists globally. This year, those contexts remain and, in the case of the United States, have been enhanced in a way with Trump’s election. It was a natural conclusion that it would be repeated this year both internationally, as well as in the United States.
CA: On November 25th, there was also an international day against gender violence. Not in the United States, unfortunately, but around the world we had some very massive demonstrations. The success of this day of mobilization also gave the impulse to think that it was possible to organize another strike this year.
SJ: Let’s talk about the history of women’s strikes, because this is something that has been around for several decades in the women’s movement, but is coming back right now
CA: Women’s strikes are not entirely a novelty. The precedent of the women’s strike was in the 1970s, the Women’s Strike in Iceland for equal wages. Two years ago, the Polish feminist movement decided to retrieve this form of struggle and to organize a women’s strike in Poland against the country’s abortion ban. The same happened in 2016 in Argentina with waves of the women’s strikes and mobilizations against gender violence.