Weekly Feminist Happenings November 24th-30th


Tuesday, November 24th

Screening of Some Kind of Spark: The documentary “Some Kind of Spark,” which follows students in Juilliard’s Music Advancement Program for inner-city youth. A panel discussion follows, featuring: Paula Fowler, director of education and community outreach for Utah Symphony | Utah Opera; Victoria Petro-Eschler, executive director of GraceNotes, a music education program; and Marty McMillan, executive director of the Legacy Music Alliance. Presented by the Utah Film Center and the Utah Symphony. Details: Starts at 7 p.m. Salt Lake City Public Library (210 E. 400 South, Salt Lake City).

Thursday, November 26th

Utah Human Race: The Utah Food Bank will present the 10th annual Utah Human Race, held on Thanksgiving morning, Nov. 26, 2015. As a major component of Utah Food Bank’s annual Holiday Food and Fund Drive, every sponsorship dollar and registration fee raised from the race directly benefits Utah Food Bank’s mission of Fighting Hunger Statewide. Registration closes on November 23rd at noon. There is no same-day registration. For further race details, visit www.UtahHumanRace.org or email kellyo@utahfoodbank.org. Details: Starts at 7″30 a.m. at Draper Spectrum/VF Outlet (12101 Factory Outlet Drive, Draper).

It’s a slow week due to Thanksgiving. Enjoy your holiday!

See Suffragette Before It Leaves Theaters!


{This is a review from Katie Christensen.}

Suffragette follows the story of Maud Watts (played by Carey Mulligan) as she wrestles with the idea of joining the suffragettes of 1912 England in their fight for their right to vote. Watts encounters famous suffragettes from history, women like Emmeline Pankhurst (Meryl Streep) and Emily Wilding Davidson (Natalie Press), as well as the fictional Edith Ellyn (Helena Bonham Carter). Ellyn was supposedly modeled after Edith Garrud, the suffragette jiu-jitsu instructor, but I’m disappointed to report that no jiu jitsu ended up in the final cut.

If there is one thing I can say about this movie with absolute certainty, it’s that it passes the Bechdel Test.

It was refreshing to see a woman-centered and woman-produced movie actually center around women, but the men were so one-dimensional it was almost painful. The one man who showed some personality development was Maud’s husband, Sonny (Ben Whishaw), but his transition wasn’t flushed out enough to be believable.

I must confess that, as a Doctor Who fanatic, I’ve always loved Carey Mulligan. (I even almost enjoyed the terrible modernized version of The Great Gatsby simply because she was in it.) That being said, her performance as Maud Watts was fantastic. Her acting was superb, and I found myself empathizing with her. Watt’s reluctance to get involved in the suffrage movement was relatable and frustrating at the same time. It took me back to the days when I refused to admit I was a feminist simply because of the stigma attached to the word.

This film’s relationship to the male gaze is intriguing. While the video work felt nothing like the average movie (the camera never lingered on the women’s bodies) the male gaze was present within the film itself through the use of the newly invented “discreet” portable camera. (Note: I didn’t expect any moments of combined audience laughter, but when a police officer declared that the giant camera of the early 1910s was sneaky enough for surveillance, the audience couldn’t suppress a giggle.) The images created by these giant cameras demonstrated to the audience how the men viewed the suffragettes: pretty and nothing more than a nuisance.

The parallels between Maud Watt’s struggle to accept the suffragette movement, and women today resisting feminism, are glaring to say the least. There were several speeches in the film that, with a few words swapped out, could be heard at any feminist rally or gender studies course in the U.S. right now. As was true in reality, there were many women shown in the film who are actively against gaining the right to vote, their internalized sexism excruciating to see. Even the tactics used by the men fighting against the suffragettes were eerily familiar to me. Not only were women beaten and imprisoned, but words like “crazy” were used to discredit them and take focus away from the cause they were fighting for.

I was really excited when this film was announced, but the PR nightmare that was the “I’d rather be a rebel than a slave” t-shirt photo shoot made me reluctant to see the film. I didn’t expect a lot of diversity in a story so focused on white women but it was shocking to not see a single person of color in the entire film. The lack of PoC felt deliberate—almost forced. Even when natural opportunities arose for the mere mention of WoC, those opportunities were ignored. It felt as though the creators got so much backlash over the t-shirts that they set out to prove that it wasn’t about race by eliminating all mentions of it. An unsuccessful tactic, to be sure.

I could write an entire review solely about trigger warnings for this film. Sexual violence, police brutality, and violence against women were all major parts of the plot. The images can only be described as jarring. However, the violence was not gratuitous, nor was it used to merely advance the plot. Each instance of violence exposed a truth about what the suffragettes went through. Excluding these scenes would have erased a crucial part of history. Also, as the violence is shown the emphasis is placed on the way it impacted the characters rather than being voyeuristic.

This wasn’t a film I’d watch just for fun but it has value as an educational tool for those of us who often take the right to vote for granted. The credo of this film is “Deeds not words.” For all of its flaws, it succeeded in instilling a sense of urgency in its viewers. The passion and conviction of the suffragettes was contagious. I felt myself wanting to run out immediately after the film ended (even though it was 9:00 PM and around 45 degrees outside) and demand equal rights for women everywhere. So, if you’re looking for some extra motivation in your fight for equality, I recommend you watch Suffragette.

Suffragette is still playing! See it before it leaves theaters! 

University of Utah Anti-Racism Solidarity March

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In another proud moment for this alumni of the University of Utah, the school is hosting a solidarity march and town hall discussion on racism on Friday, November 20th. Join in the town hall discussion to help tackle racism on the University of Utah campus.


Weekly Feminist Happenings November 17th-23rd


Tuesday, November 17th

UCCD World Affairs Lecture Series: Suzanne Massie – What We Don’t Know About Russia Today: Official Washington and media are gripped with a bad case Russophobia, locked in a forty year old stereotypes and policies of the old Cold War and determined to ignite a new one. We are led to believe that there is no diversity, independence or anything neither good nor original going on in Russia today. The truth is far more complex and we urgently need a broader prospective. Suzanne Massie’s lecture will address some of the important facts ignored about Russia and the Russian people today that we need to know about. Details: From 7-8:30 p.m. in the Vieve Gore Concert Hall at Westminster College.

Wednesday, November 18th

HEAL Utah Ninth Annual Fall Party: Join HEAL Utah for our Ninth Annual Fall Party! HEAL is excited to welcome writer, explorer and naturalist Gretel Ehrlich, who will discuss her 20 years of experience traveling by dogsled on the northwest coast of Greenland with subsistence Inuit hunters. Ms. Ehrlich will discuss Arctic culture and ecology, and the impact of climate change. HEAL will follow up Gretel’s talk with updates on our campaigns to reduce carbon emissions in Utah. Details: From 6:30-9:00 p.m. at the State Room (638 S State Street).

William M. Adler: The Life, Times, and Legacy of Joe Hill, American Labor Icon: On the eve of the 100th anniversary of the execution of Joe Hill, join William M. Adler at the bookstore for a presentation on the legacy of Joe Hill. In his biography, Adler gives us the first full-scale biography of Joe Hill, and presents never before published documentary evidence that comes as close as one can to definitively exonerating him. Hill’s gripping tale is set against a brief but electrifying moment in American history, between the century’s turn and World War I, when the call for industrial unionism struck a deep chord among disenfranchised workers; when class warfare raged and capitalism was on the run. Hill was the union’s preeminent songwriter, and in death, he became organized labor’s most venerated martyr, celebrated by Woody Guthrie and Bob Dylan, and immortalized in the ballad “I Dreamed I Saw Joe Hill Last Night.” Details: Starts at 7 p.m. at Ken Sanders Rare Books (268 S. 200 East, Salt Lake City).

Thursday, November 19th

Ai Weiwei: The Fake Case: The Utah Museum of Contemporary Art (UMOCA) will present a free screening of Andreas Johnsen’s 2013 documentary, “Ai Weiwei: The Fake Case,” Nov. 19, 2015. The documentary follows world-renowned Chinese artist/activist Weiwei, who after 81 days of solitary detention, is put under house arrest and met with an enormous lawsuit by the Chinese government. Visit utahmoca.org for information. Details: Starts at 7 p.m. at the Utah Museum of Contemporary Art (20 S. West Temple, Salt Lake City).

Damn These Heels Year-round–Drag Becomes Him: The Utah Film Center will screen “Drag Becomes Him,” Nov. 19, 2015. This film provides an intimate glimpse inside the life of the internationally acclaimed drag performer Jinx Monsoon. The film follows the passionate pursuits that transformed a working-class boy in a struggling family to an illustrious performer on a global stage. Visit utahfilmcenter.org for information. Details: Starts at 7 p.m. at Brewvies Cinema & Pub (677 S. 200 West, Salt Lake City).

Screening of Carvalhos Journey: I.J. & Jeanné Wagner Jewish Community Center will present Carvalho’s Journey. This new documentary, by Steve Rivo, is the extraordinary story of Solomon Nunes Carvalho (1815-1897), an observant Sephardic Jew born in Charleston, South Carolina, and his life as a groundbreaking explorer and artist. Visit slcjcc.org for information. Details: Starts at 8 p.m. at the Jewish Community Center (2 N. Medical Drive, Salt Lake City).

Saturday, November 21st

Sense/ability: Utah Museum of Contemporary Art will present the second installment of the SENSE/ABILITY tours, Nov. 21, 2015. This exhibit is tailored for children with sensory sensitivity in mind and will explore the mixed-media works of “Grandma’s Cupboard.” Details: Starts at 10 a.m. at the Utah Museum of Contemporary Art (20 S. West Temple, Salt Lake City). RSVP by email to Jared.steffensen@utahmoca.org.

Screening of Meet the Patels: The documentary “Meet the Patels,” in which siblings Geeta and Ravi Patel, first-generation Indian-Americans who go to India to look for love the traditional way. Details: Starts at 8 p.m. at the Park City Library Center (1255 Park Ave., Park City).

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Weekly Feminist Happenings November 10th-16th


Tuesday, November 10th

Naomi Klein Lecture: Award-winning journalist and author Naomi Klein will be the feature Tanner Lecture speaker November 10 at Salt Lake Community College. Klein’s works such as “The Shock Doctrine” and “This Changes Everything,” along with her long successful career as a journalist and columnist, will fuel the kind of Tanner Lecture experience that has made the series a sought-after event for the community. Details: From 7-8:30 p.m. in the  SLCC Grand Theatre (1575 South State Street).

Grief and the Holidays: Caring Connections: A Hope and Comfort in Grief Program will hold its annual Grief and The Holidays event on November 10, 2015 at 7:00 p.m., at the University of Utah College of Nursing Annette Poulson Cumming Building located on 10 South 2000 East. Grief and the Holidays is an opportunity for individuals to come together and cope with the loss of a family member or friend while keeping the memory of that loved one alive during the difficult holiday season. This year’s theme is “Finding Warmth in the Winter.” The program’s featured speaker is a New York Times best-selling author and renowned speaker, Sean Covey with music by Julie Nelson. Details: From 7-8:30 in the University of Utah College of Nursing Annette Poulson Cumming Building. Grief and the Holidays is free and open to the public and includes refreshments following the program. Parking is available on the first level, north end, of the building. For a map and more information, call 801-585-9522.

Wednesday, November 11th

Real Women Run Fall Social: Join Real Women Run for a fall networking social to meet other women who are running for office, working on a campaign, or serving on a board or commission. Details: From 5:30-7:30 at the Market Street Grill Cottonwood (2985 East Cottonwood Parkway).

Thursday, November 12th

Screening of The Case Against 8: See the award-winning film about the case that started it all! On June 26, 2015, the United States became the 21st country to legalize same-sex marriage. The road to this decision was long, and began with the legal battle to overturn Proposition 8 in California. Screening followed by an audience Q&A with Directors Cotner and White. Details: From 6-8:30 p.m. at the Broadway Theater (111 E. 300 S.).

Friday, November 13th

Feminist Research–Connections to Feminist Multicultural Practice & Social Justice Activism: What is Feminist Research?
How Does Feminist Research Relate to Counseling Practice?
How Does Feminist Research Relate to Social Justice
Details: Sue Morrow Ph.D, Professor Educational Psychology, Univeristy of Utah, will be presenting Friday from 5pm-7pm at The Rape Recovery Center (2035 South 1300 East, SLC, UT 84106).

Helping Transgender and Gender Diverse Students Succeed at School and at Home: Utah Association of School Psychologists Annual Conference: We invite you to join us for the annual School Psychology Awareness Week conference sponsored by the Utah Association of School Psychologists (UASP) on November 13, 2015. We are excited to have the National Association of School Psychologists (NASP) President Todd A. Savage join us in Salt Lake City to present on Helping Transgender and Gender Diverse Students Succeed at School and at Home, as well as his 2015 theme for NASP, School Climate. We welcome school psychologists, counselors, educators, parents, and community organizations to attend in an effort to increase supports for students in Utah schools. Please visit the Utah Association of School Psychologists for registration and additional information.

Saturday, November 14th

7th Annual Genderevolution Conference: Genderevolution is the pinnacle event of Transgender Education and Awareness Month.
Scholarships are available in advance and at the doors. No one will be turned away.

The purpose of the GendeRevolution is to:

  • Foster community building among trans* folk and allies alike, to help create a strong and safe space to push gender boundaries in the Salt Lake City area.
  • Educate employees, cisgender/non-trans* folk, trans* folk, health and mental care providers, and allies about the myths and realities of gender.
  • Celebrate trans* identities in an inclusive, healthy and positive way.

We are proud to host a nationally renowned speaker for the conference. The speaker garners national recognition and will attract participants from all across Utah and surrounding states. Details: Checkout the conference schedule here, and remember that no one is turned away!

SheJumps Wilderness First Aid Certification Class: Come spend a couple days with like-minded, outdoor loving women and learn what you need, to be prepared in the wilderness. This course teaches the fundamentals of first aid in remote areas, covering topics from patient assessment and documentation to athletic injuries and altitude illness. The curriculum does not stop there! After the two days of instruction, participants will receive a WFA certification, valid for two years! So come play and be safe by preparing yourself with the information and skills necessary for the worst case scenario. Details: From 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. at Black Diamond (2092 3900 S). The class is $200.

Get Out The Funk! Breathe Utah’s 5th Annual Gala: Please join Breathe Utah as we celebrate five years of success! With help from supporters like you, Breathe Utah continues to improve our air quality through collaboration, policy and education. Details: Be proud to be a supporter of clean air and get FUNKY with us at the Gallivan Center, Saturday, November 14th from 6-10pm. Enjoy an evening of great food, drinks and dancing! Buy your tickets here. 

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