Friday, September 26, 2008

Remembering the Lolas - A Five Post Tribute

I've been "home" for a little over three weeks since my two month studying and research trip to the Philippines where I attempted to come to understand global and transnational feminism and its ties to violence against womyn.  In my spare time, I was even more busy meeting family members I had never known and learning about my parents' homeland.

Again, as I re-enter the western culture after adapting to other ways of life, my mouth has been silent, my writing still.  Organizing my thoughts is difficult.  There was so much to learn and even more to process after such a loaded experience that ultimately, transformed me, cemented my commitment to ending violence against women, and changed my perspective on feminism.

As I work on larger pieces of work about my time in the Philippines, I thought I'd begin with art. Media and art have a way of bringing the truth out of me when thoughts are just too personal to share.

I want to be able to share my experiences with whoever is reading A Womyn's Ecdysis so you can experience a little bit of what I saw and be touched by the glorious strength of so many womyn I met in the Philippines.  Filipinas are womyn of strength, celebration, and dance.  The more I learn about the various experiences of Pinays, the more I am proud to call myself and identify as one.  

As a feminist with US citizenship, I hope to bring their stories to you in any way that I can.  As a US blogger, I can only hope that you are interested in the injustices against women all over the world because a US centered feminism is an irrelevant and useless lens for the global majority of womyn.

I met some of the surviving "comfort" women of World War II and it was one of the most remarkable and unforgettable evenings of my life.  This five post tribute is for the women of Lila Pilipina, the survivors who are demanding an apology from the Japanese government to formally recognize the torture and atrocities afflicted upon the Filipino women during this time period.  The Japanese government has refused, but the Lola's struggle - and celebrations - continue.

I came upon Lila Pilipina well before my trip to the Philippines and I learned more in one evening with them than I could ever imagined.  This is my tribute to their struggle, but more importantly their hope, energy, and inspiration.  

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