Tuesday, 8 April 2008

The Nino/Nina

The issue of climate change is usually accompanied to the debate on the need to transform our way of life, our way of production, our progressive vision which is day by day called into question by scientific data. Actually in this last decade one has witnessed a global warming that led to a complaint of this situation, but this spring, and summer as well, will be cold because there will be a "natural", cyclic, climatic condition which will increase cold by lowering temperatures, even for a while, and which will slow down global warming that start to grow again passed this period, breaking our vain illusions of a general better weather conditions.
This cooling phenomenon is qualified under the name of Nina which is the female equivalent of the Nino, climate phenomenon that brings warmth to planet earth and is best known.
So even in climatic appellations we can find the typical dichotomy of good/bad, dry/wet, heat/cold of that "natural" vision of woman that from the XX century has spread in the predominant culture. This vision has characterized woman as antithetic to man, a man starring qualifications of a highly, beneficial, positive value and a necessary contrary female value. This vision has dominated culture that has so influenced the status of women until considered them unable to testify because too emotional and therefore unreliable, or untill to call into question their membership or not to mankind.
And so here in XXIth century raises the old but clearly present dichotomy of the "natural" of good/bad applied to meteorology where is not a coincidence that we find the male phenomenon linked to the heat that benefits of a common wellness vision even if for our days is in reality degenerative while watching a cooling phenomenon which has generally a negative perception one has give a female designation which, beard to common view, is today a good thing because stops a negative one, in this case represented by the male phenomenon, so we are indeed facing a full representation of reality in which women are defined in negative irrespective of their social contribution, always and in general positive and essential compared instead of a positive male consideration which in practice is excessive and harmful and which is the guilty of the overheating and of the natural, that is, environmental decline.
Here is the overturned of the natural, sexist and climatic vision of the dichotomy represented by the Nino/Nina.

Tuesday, 1 April 2008

That is why we are still in nineteenth century

The US elections this time more than ever focus our attention as they refer us to a wellknown ancient "querelle".
In XIXth century, the condition of women was claimed as for the slaves, women were a political issue whom vastness and importance affects all the nation, becoming a fondamental issue for the entire US society as the slaves issue as well, this was for Mary Wollstonecraft, for Jhon Stuart Mill as for William Thompson.
Nowadays we are at the same point, we assist to an electoral match where there is a man who is a symbol of social redemption for those slaves mentioned in the past and who had progress and a woman symbol of other significances and fights.
The true is that we will attend to an epochal changing in the same way but as the black people issues were noted, disclosed and supported, from women themselves, more clearly from the beginning, the issue of women was dealt on a secondary level and overshadowed by the first one. As racism is still alive is already present a common, shared condemns of this phenomenon, otherwise the anti-feminism is still more hidden, sly and got more detrimental cultural features which concerns more people because if is true that many will be the moral beneficiaries seeing at the White House an ancestor of those slaves came without rights or dignity recognized, it is already true that a woman presence would gratified twice that person as well because black women are usually double affected, a time because they are black, twice because they are women.
If is it true that slaves came without rights or dignity, woman (also the white one) had suffered for centuries before that exclusion from human race which precluded her dignity, rationality and for consequence equal rights but not only civil, political or legal rights but human rights as well.
One started with a fight for civil acknowledgement of one part and then from this it has developped a new, different asserting also for the other part, they divided but only for meeting again two centuries after struggling for a power which will be a symbol of a compleate redemption. That is why after two centuries we are still in nineteenth century where from the slaves problem born the feminism mouvement for civil women rights and which are nowadays contending an important position for the redemption of both. Again after two centuries we are still in front of the two issues which see in their more important symbol of representation not an end but a further unknown propulsive beginning.

Friday, 7 March 2008

Not only Mimosa

For the women's day is coming out on cinemas a documentary by Alina Marazzi about the italian 60's and 70's feminist mouvement..

In Italy each day we hear about violence, frustration of women, every day one can find such a thing on newspapers or in tv. The violence against women is really spread out in Italy and becoming worrying day by day, in 2005 a murder every 4 happens at home, 70% of murdered are women. This movie is about our history because everyday life recalls us how difficult is to be a woman, as the director says: "In Italy, also on the street, one can't forget, even for a while, that you are a woman before be a person". In this documentary one can see the fight of that period for issues even nowadays on the italian agenda, we can see how the italian feminist mouvement has succeeded for all us but also how much is again to do.
"We want roses too" title due to the american workers of the XX century who stroke for bread but also for roses meaning a better quality of lifestyle for women and as the director says: "Maybe feminism has no urgency nowadays but there is again a lots of things to do, it happened a change in social costumes that we assume...maybe the necessary, the bread, is acquired but women fought also for a world in which there would be space for the poetry of roses and this is a current battle more than ever."

Wednesday, 5 March 2008

Tina Lagostena Bassi the lawyer of women

On 4th March is dead, after a long illness, Augusta (Tina) Lagostena Bassi, a great woman of law who had always fought for italian women's rights; she was born in Milan on 2th March 1926.
She started her career as a professor of penal Law at the University of Genoa, then moved to the University of Parma.
From 1973 to 1975 she worked for Reformation Bureau of the Italian Justice Minister and represented Italy at Praga's 1983 World Peace Meeting.
She started to defend women from stalking and sexual violence and first in Italy during her work has used cruel words, during processes, to describe violence trying to shocking the italian society from the late 70's which always was reticent to women violence, to breaking silence among this stuff.
She took the defence of the survivor Donatella Colasanti, from the Massacre of Circeo (1975) where three guys invited two adolescents girls, known only same days before in a pub, to a party in ones of thier house at Circeo, near Rome. But no party was there, the two girls were tortured, violented and massacred for one day and one night. One of the slavedriver during the fact came back to Rome for not miss his family lunch, then came back to Circeo to continue the massacre: the two girls were druged, beaten and then, belived dead, putted in the three boys' car who went to Rome in a pub to drink something, but only one girl survived and from the luggage of the car could complain and so some citizens could call the police.

During the process, that shocked Italy for his violence due not only to misogen but also to social racism, the two girls in fact were from a media social class instead of the three boys who were from an aristocratic social class, Tina Lagostena could be able to defend the survivor girl Donatella saying she represented all women and Justice would be necesary not for revenge but for Justice itself.
She broke the cliché of women who cause the violence and that one which represent good girls staying at house, so bad girls are those who just want fun and friendship, for the first time she used the word "rape" in an italian Court.
At the end of the process she could reach to have a sentence of condemnation which transform italian value refered to women, thanks to her and her new woman style of making lawyer in a men's place as a Court.

With other women, engaged for women's rights, based, on 1988, the Pink Phone (Telefono Rosa) an association which gives free services to women in difficulty as legal support or psychological services or medical visits, this association remains the most important association in Italy for violented women also nowadays.

She has been the President of the National Gender Opportunities Commission of the Consiglio dei Ministri (the institution which coordinates the italian government) and member of the UE Gender Commission.

She was the italian Chief of the delegation at the Pechino's UN Conference for women's rights, on 1994.

She wrote also the important italian law for the sexual violence against women of the 1996 which for the first time established the civil principle that sexual abuse is a crime against a person and no more against public moral as first 1996 again in Italy was.

In 2003 she was one of the promoter for the change of the italian constitutional article number 51 which now establishes the equality for men and women in society with equal opportunities for both sex in public and private market.

From her book named "The lawyer of women" , on 1997, the public italian television made a tv-movie with the same title and starring by the most important italian actress.

In this video we see Tina during a process, of the '70s, defending a girl named Fiorella raped by four men, she knew, and who were told guilty by the Italian law even if in a derisory way!.

Tuesday, 4 March 2008

Today is the day that can change the world...

100 Reasons to support Hillary:

Reason #1 to support Hillary:In Arkansas she was instrumental in straightening out their school system - taking it from one of the worst systems to a role model used by other troubled schools on how to improve public education.
Reason #2 to support Hillary:In 2006, she led the fight to kill the anti-gay Republican constitutional amendment that for the first time would have added laws to the Constitution that would INCREASE discrimination.
Reason #3 to support Hillary:After being pummeled by the public for trying to pass Universal Health care while she was First Lady, she dusted herself off and in 1997, led a federal effort that provided insurance support for children whose parents were unable to provide them with health coverage.
Reason #4 to Support Hillary:She was able to secure a raise in research funding for prostate cancer and childhood asthma at the National Institutes of Health.
Reason #5 to Support Hillary:She initiated the Adoption and Safe Families Act.
Reason #6 to Support Hillary:She's authored a great deal of legislation during her years on the Armed Services Committee that has passed regarding increased and improved benefits for our returning Iraq veterans.
Reason #7 to Support Hillary:She was one of the key Senators who fought to give our military badly needed raises and increase in benefits. For being such flag wavers, it was the Republicans and Bush who resisted these attempts to show our military how much we value and appreciate them.
Reason #8 to Support Hillary:Since 1974 she has been fighting for a woman's right to choose.
Reason #9 to Support Hillary:She is fighting to lift the ban on stem cell research to cure devastating diseases.
Reason #10 to Support Hillary:Voted YES on $100M to reduce teen pregnancy by education & contraceptives. (Mar 2005)
Reason #11 to Support Hillary:Rated 100% by NARAL, indicating a pro-choice voting record.(Dec 2003)
Reason #12 to Support Hillary:Vows to protect next generation by paying off national debt.
Reason #13 to Support Hillary:Fought in Congress to "Help people facing foreclosure; don't just bail-out banks." (Aug 2007)
Reason #14 to Support Hillary:In 1962 she met MLK Jr. preaching a sermon in Chicago and learned from him the importance of equal rights for all.
Reason #15 for Supporting Hillary:In 1965 she brought black classmates to her until-then all-white church.
Reason #16 to Support Hillary:Since 1995 has criticized China's human rights abuses.
Reason #17 to Support Hillary:IN 1988 Instituted gender diversity Report Card within the American Bar Association, which sets standards for lawyers in the U.S.
Reason #18 to Support Hillary:In 1972 worked as a lawyer suing white-only schools, working with Marian Wright Edelman on enforcing school desegregation in the South.
Reason #19 to Support Hillary:In October, 2000 she said it's not enough for America just to apologize for slavery and move on; we need to concentrate on civil rights now.
Reason #20 to Support Hillary:Has been pushing for a "Privacy Bill of Rights" for all Americans since 2000.
Reason #21 to support Hillary:Will end don't ask, don't tell in the military, "Gay soldiers need to shoot straight, not be straight." November 2003.
Reason #22 to Support Hillary:Supports civil unions, with full equality of federal benefits.
Reason #23 to Support Hillary:Voted YES on adding violent crimes based on victim's sexual orientation to definition of hate crimes.
Reason #24 to support Hillary:Rated 96% by the NAACP, indicating a pro-affirmative-action stance.
Reason #25 to support Hillary:Freedom of Speech: Voted NO on recommending Constitutional ban on flag desecration.
Reason #26 to Support Hillary: [A.K.A "Whoopi Goldberg's reason to support Hillary"]Voted YES on repealing tax subsidy for companies which move US jobs offshore. (Mar 2005)
Reason #27 to Support Hillary:Voted more funding and stricter sentencing for prosecution of hate crimes. (Apr 2001)
Reason #28 to Support Hillary:Voted to Require DNA testing for all federal executions. (Mar 2001)
Reason #29 to Support Hillary:Although she was in college during the height of the drug culture in the late 1960s, she was devoted to work on civil rights instead of partying and taking drugs.
Reason #30 to Support Hillary:She is fighting for Universal pre-kindergarten.
Reason #31 to Support Hillary:Wants to establish an education "Bill of Rights" - Establish right to education from pre-school thru college.
Reason #32 to Support Hillary:Since 1998 has fought publicly to keep art and music programs in public schools. "Arts education is needed in our schools."
Reason #33 to Support Hillary:'Government should pay off all student loans for teachers who go to urban schools." March, 2000
Reason #34 to Support Hillary:Wants a complete re-write, a Total change in No Child Left Behind. (August, 2007)
Reason #35 to Support Hillary:Rated 82% by the NEA, indicating pro-public education votes.
Reason #36 to Support HillaryVoted YES on spending $448B on education & debt reduction instead of Bush's tax cut for the rich. (Apr 2001)
Reason #37 to Support Hillary:Wants to "Remove energy dependence on countries who would harm us." (Jun 2006)
Reason #38 to Support Hillary:Wants to build a "$50B strategic energy research fund from taxing oil companies." (Oct 2006)
Reason #39 to Support Hillary:Wants to Invest in alternative energy; jobs that won't be outsourced.
Reason #40 to Support Hillary:Called on U.S. to Ratify Kyoto; and fund more mass transit. (Sep 2000)
Reason #41 to Support Hillary:Rated 100% by the CAF, indicating support for energy independence. (Dec 2006)
Reason #42 to Support Hillary:Voted NO on drilling for oil in the Alaska National Wildlife Reserve on national security grounds. (Apr 2002)
Reason #43 to Support Hillary:Voted YES on targeting 100,000 hydrogen-powered vehicles by 2010. (Jun 2003)
Reason #44 to Support Hillary:Voted NO on Bush Administration Energy Policy. (Jul 2003)Reason #45 to Support Hillary:Voted YES on banning drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. (Mar 2005)
Reason #46 to Support Hillary: (listen up Louisiana!)Voted YES on $3.1B for emergency oil assistance for hurricane-hit areas. (Oct 2005)
Reason #47 to Support Hillary:Voted YES on factoring global warming into federal project planning. (May 2007)
Reason #48 to Support Hillary:Voted YES on making oil-producing and exporting cartels illegal. (Jun 2007)
Reason #49 to Support Hillary:Rated 89% by the LCV, indicating pro-environment votes.
Reason #50 to Support Hillary:Voted NO on confirming Gale Norton as Secretary of Interior. (Jan 2001)
Reason #51 to Support Hillary:Called on Bush to "Put someone in charge of Katrina recovery who actually cares." (Aug 2007)
Reason #52 to Support Hillary:Her Support for green-collar job training
Reason #53 to Support Hillary:Introduced bill to Better track kids' products for exposures to toxic materials coming from China.
Reason #54 to support Hillary:Calls for the government to treat kids as "child citizens" not "minors" under the law. (Since Dec 1999)
Reason #55 to Support Hillary:Rated 0% by the Christian Coalition
Reason #56 to Support Hillary:Voted YES on enlarging NATO to include poor Eastern Europe nations. (May 2002
Reason #57 to Support Hillary:"Smartest strategic choice is peace." (Nov 1999)
Reason #58 to Support Hillary:Calling for a NATO-enforced no-fly zone to end Darfur genocide. (June, 2007)
Reason #59 to Support Hillary:IN the 1970s worked to pass Constitutional Amendment to allow young people aged 18, 19, 20 to vote.
Reason #60 to Support Hillary:Voted NO on allowing lobbyist gifts to Congress.
Reason #61 to Support Hillary:Pledges to support $50B for AIDS relief in US and world
Reason #62 to Support Hillary:Rated 100% by APHA, indicating a pro-public health record.
Reason #63 to Support Hillary:Voted NO on funding GOP version of Medicare prescription drug benefit. (Apr 2001)
Reason #64 to Support Hillary:Voted YES on allowing patients to sue HMOs & collect punitive damages. (Jun 2001)
Reason #65 to Support Hillary:Says, "Torture cannot be American policy, period." (Sep 2007)Reason #66 to Support Hillary:She would never say anything as creepy and cult-like as "We are the ones we have been waiting for."
Reason #67 to Support Hillary:Rated 100% by SANE, indicating a pro-peace voting record.
Reason # 68 to Support Hillary:Voted NO on extending the PATRIOT Act's wiretap provision. (Dec 2005)
Reason #69 to Support Hillary:Voted YES on requiring CIA reports on detainees & interrogation methods. (Sep 2006)
Reason #70 to Support Hillary:Voted YES on preserving habeas corpus for Guantanamo detainees. (Sep 2006)
Reason #71 to Support Hillary:Voted YES on limiting soldiers' deployment to 12 months. (Jul 2007)
Reason #72 to Support Hillary:Voted YES on giving Guest Workers a path to citizenship. (May 2006)
Reason #73 to Support Hillary:Voted YES on comprehensive immigration reform. (Jun 2007)Reason #74 to Support Hillary:Voted: No salary increase for Congress until minimum wage increased.
Reason #75 to Support Hillary:Would accept minimum wage as president. (Jul 2007)
Reason #76 to Support Hillary:Rated 85% by the AFL-CIO, indicating a pro-union voting record.
Reason #77 to Support Hillary:Voted NO on repealing Clinton's ergonomic rules on repetitive stress. (Mar 2001)
Reason #78 to Support Hillary:Voted YES on increasing minimum wage to $7.25.
Reason #79 to Support Hillary:Voted YES on restricting employer interference in union organizing
Reason #80 to Support Hillary:Admits she made mistake in believing in WMDs in Iraq after being mislead by the Bush Administration.
Reason #81 to Support Hillary:Reaches out to conservatives but voting record is progressive.
Reason #82 to Support Hillary:"Karl Rove is obsessed with me because I take Republicans on & beat them." (Aug 2007)
Reason #83 to Support Hillary:Served as a Staff attorney on Watergate/Nixon impeachment investigation.
Reason #84 to Support Hillary:1976: Organized Indiana for Carter-Mondale campaign. She knows what it is like to work on a democrat campaign in RED STATES!
Reason #85 to Support Hillary:Rated 100% by the AU, indicating support of church-state separation.
Reason #86 to Support Hillary:Voted NO on confirming John Roberts for Chief Justice of the Supreme Court.
Reason #87 to Support Hillary:Voted NO on confirming Samuel Alito as Supreme Court Justice.
Reason #88 to Support Hillary:Rated 100% by the ARA, indicating a pro-senior voting record.
Reason #89 to Support Hillary:Voted YES on increasing tax deductions for college tuition.
Reason #90 to Support Hillary:At Wellesley in 1968, steered college anti-war movement.
Reason #91 to Support Hillary:Recommended by EMILY's List of pro-choice women.
Reason #92 to Support Hillary:Voted YES on shifting $11B from corporate tax loopholes to education. (Mar 2005)
Reason # 93 to Support Hillary:1980s: Led her church to found the largest daycare in Arkansas.
Reason #94 to Support Hillary:1978: chaired Legal Services Corp. in President Carter's Administration - allowing Poor Families access to legal aid
Reason #95 to Support Hillary:Voted YES on implementing the 9/11 Commission report to get us out of Iraq in a fast, safe manner.
Reason #96 to Support Hillary:Voted YES on restoring $565M for states' and ports' first responders eliminated by the Bush Administration.
Reason #97 to Support Hillary:Worked with Evan Bayh, Al Gore, Bill Clinton and others in the 1980s to rejuvenate the Democratic Party from within.
Reason #98 to Support Hillary:In 1969, she entered law school as "vehicle for social change."
Reason #99 to Support Hillary:Calls to Increase spending for libraries.
Reason #100 to Support Hillary:In October, 2006 - called for "Phased redeployment out of Iraq, beginning immediately."

Monday, 3 March 2008

In love memory...

Nata Betty Naomi Goldstein, in Peonia, Illinois, nel 1920, il 4 febbraio; si è spenta nello stesso giorno, all’età di 85 anni, Betty Friedan, una delle madri del così detto “femminismo della seconda ondata”.
Scandalizzò l’America puritana e ben pensante con i suoi lavori sulla condizione delle donne americane, denunciandone l’insoddisfazione e la frustrazione mascherate da una esteriore facciata di brave madri e mogli.
Nata da un esule ebreo russo e da una madre russa che la iniziò alla carriera giornalistica, si dimostrò subito geniale nelle sue attività scolastiche. Si diplomò con il massimo dei voti nel 1942; vinse una borsa di studio per l’università di Berkley, in California, dove si laureò in Psicologia, e ne vinse una ancora più importante per il dottorato che rifiutò acconsentendo alle richieste del suo compagno di allora spaventato dal di lei successo. Un errore che ricorderà spesso nelle sue interviste.
L’opera che la rese famosa fu “The Femminine Mystique” ossia “L’Illusione della femminilità”, un lavoro di ricerca che era nato come studio per la sua maturità ma che successivamente fu ampliato da una serie di ricerche rivolte a confermare il suo operato ad un livello più ampio. Il risultato fu sconcertante per la stessa autrice, infatti, queste ricerche misero in luce quanto le donne, nonostante un’apparente facciata di perbenismo e serenità, fossero insoddisfatte delle loro vite, un male che lei definì: “Il problema senza nome”.
Inizialmente Betty cercò di far pubblicare il suo studio, sotto forma di articolo, su diverse testate femminili, ma i loro editori maschi, uno ad uno, lo rigettarono dicendo che si trattava di una donna malata, insoddisfatta della sua vita. La Friedan però non si arrese e trasformò quell’articolo, nel 1963, in un libro che venne pubblicato durante lo sciopero di un quotidiano e che successivamente fu ripreso anche da altri giornali. In questo libro la Friedan mette in evidenza come per le donne, anche quelle della buona borghesia con una cultura media- avanzata, l’unico modello disponibile fosse quello di madre e moglie.
Non soddisfatta dell’attenzione e dello shock provocato nella società americana, fondò nel 1966 insieme ad altre colleghe, il NOW, National Organization for Women, che con dimostrazioni e cortei, il più visibile fu lo sciopero per l’uguaglianza tenuto nell’agosto del 1970, ottenne importanti risultati che a noi oggi sembrano scontati come la presenza delle donne in politica, nelle forze armate, nelle scienze, nonché la legge per l’aborto. (Stiamo parlando degli USA!).
In realtà non fu mai molto amata dalle femministe per il suo carattere abbastanza rude e fu accusata di essere la portavoce di quelle donne dei ceti medi, bianche e benestanti e di non prestare invece attenzione alle minoranze, ai poveri e alle lesbiche. Nonostante questo però la Friedan è comunque considerata universalmente un’importante figura del femminismo contemporaneo, premiata con awards e lauree onorarie, ha passato gli ultimi anni della sua vita tenendo lezioni ed incontri nelle università americane, portando avanti instancabilmente il suo messaggio che potremmo così sintetizzare: “Some people think I'm saying, 'Women of the world unite — you have nothing to lose but your men. It's not true. You have nothing to lose but your vacuum cleaners." (Alcune persone pensano che io stia dicendo: ' Donne di tutto il mondo unitevi - non avete nulla da perdere, se non i vostri uomini. Non è vero. Non avete nulla da perdere, se non il vostro aspirapolvere ".

¨ The Femminine Mystique", New York: W.W. Norton,1963
¨ It Changed My Life", New York: Random House, 1976
¨ The Second Stage", Summit, 1981
¨ The Fountain of Age", Simon & Schuster, 1993
¨ Life So Far", Simon& Schuster, 2000 (la sua biografia)

Betty Naomi Goldstein, was born in Peonia, Illinois, on the 4th February and on the same day, in 2006 at the age of 85 died.
Betty Friedan, one of the mother of the so called “second wave feminism”.

She shocked the puritan USA with her works about American women condition, show out their frustrations under their well appearance of good manner wives and housewives .
She was the daughter of an exile Russian Jew and from a Russian mother who started her to the journalism, she make early clear her qualities of genius during her scholar career. She graduated with the best results on 1942, won a scholarship for Berkley University, in California, where she degree in Psychology and won the doctorate which she refused to accomplished her husband. An error she would remark throughout all her life.
Her major work that give her popularity was The feminine Mystique, a work born during her scholar period which was enlarged . The result of this study was shocking even for her author, Betty herself, because this research showed how, women although the surface of wellness and happiness , were unsatisfied of their lives, an illness she defined: “The problem with no name”.
At the beginning Betty tried to publish this work as an article on women’s magazines but with no success, male’s directors say she was just a sick, frustrated woman.
But during a strike she could publish her work on paper so media noticed at list her study, on 1963. She so could put in light that for women even those of good family the only model were those of mother and wife.
She wasn’t satisfied about the attention she could have on this issue and on 1966 she found NOW, National Organization for Women, which with strikes, one the most important was that one on 1970 for the equality, could reach important scores such as the presence of women in policy, in the us force, in sciences, and the abortion right.
We have also to say that she wasn’t loved by all feminists for her rude behavior and because she was accused to represent only the wait good family women and to don’t talk for the minorities, the poor and the lesbians.
Although this, she is universally considered a very important feminist, who received awards and degrees; she has passed her next lifetime having lessons and meetings in Universities around US, to keeping forward her message that one can summarized with this words: “Some people think I'm saying, 'Women of the world unite — you have nothing to lose but your men. It's not true. You have nothing to lose but your vacuum cleaners."

"The Femminine Mystique", New York: W.W. Norton,1963;
¨ It Changed My Life", New York: Random House, 1976;
¨ The Second Stage", Summit, 1981;
¨ The Fountain of Age", Simon & Schuster, 1993;
¨ Life So Far", Simon& Schuster, 2000

Saturday, 9 February 2008

Once Again...we can do it!

The “Say NO to Violence against Women” campaign counts on each of us to speak out by signing up. Now, the United Nations Foundation is counting too. It has issued a challenge: for each of the first 100,000 signatures to the campaign, the UN Foundation will donate $1 to the UN Trust Fund to End Violence against Women. We need everyone’s help to get 100,000 people to sign on to the UNIFEM campaign so that $100,000 will be contributed to the Trust Fund for local initiatives working to prevent human trafficking, assisting survivors of domestic violence or helping implement laws against rape.

We know gathering 100,000 names is definitely a challenge, but we know that together we can do it. So please join me once again. Let’s renew our efforts to reach out to our organizations, colleagues, friends and family and encourage them to sign on at: http://www.saynotoviolence.org/.

Let’s show the world that there is an ever-growing movement of people who say “NO” to violence against women. Click and be counted.
Thank you.

Nicole Kidman

UNIFEM Goodwill Ambassador

Tuesday, 5 February 2008

Today you can change the world...so don't miss history

Dear Friend,

I need your help today. Twenty-two states are voting in the Democratic presidential primary. I went to vote this morning in New York, and I need all of you who can vote today to go to the polls as well. You can find information on voting locations at www.hillaryclinton.com. Make your voice heard today -- vote and be counted. Be sure to tell your family, friends, and neighbors to get out and vote!

Thank you for your help,


Tuesday, 29 January 2008

Attention all Woman

Massachusetts Sen. Ted Kennedy is under heavy fire from a state chapter of the National Organization for Women for his decision to back Barack Obama over Hillary Clinton.In a sharply critical statement, the New York state chapter of NOW took aim at Kennedy Monday for what it called an "ultimate betrayal," and suggested the Massachusetts Democrat "can't or won't" handle the idea of Clinton becoming President of the United States."Sen. Kennedy’s endorsement of Hillary Clinton’s opponent in the Democratic presidential primary campaign has really hit women hard," said the statement. "Women have forgiven Kennedy, stuck up for him, stood by him, hushed the fact that he was late in his support of Title IX, the ERA, the Family Leave and Medical Act to name a few.""And now the greatest betrayal! We are repaid with his abandonment!" the statement continues. "He’s picked the new guy over us. He’s joined the list of progressive white men who can’t or won’t handle the prospect of a woman president who is Hillary Clinton."After months on the sidelines, Kennedy formally endorsed Obama Monday during a speech at American University, despite reported pleas from the Clinton campaign that he remain neutral. He hailed the Illinois senator for his potential to be a “president who appeals to the hopes of those who still believe in the American dream."Kennedy also praised Clinton and John Edwards in his speech, saying that “whoever is our nominee will have my enthusiastic support."But the NOW state chapter suggested Monday Kennedy's decision was a larger representation of society’s ongoing disrespect for women's rights."This latest move by Kennedy is so telling about the status of and respect for women’s rights, women’s voices, women’s equality, women’s authority and our ability – indeed, our obligation — to promote and earn and deserve and elect, unabashedly, a president that is the first woman after centuries of men who ‘know what’s best for us.’”Meanwhile, the national chapter of NOW sought to distance itself from the state chapter’s comments, issuing a statement Monday evening that praised Kennedy's record with respect to women's rights."Though the National Organization for Women Political Action Committee has proudly endorsed Sen. Hillary Clinton for president, we respect Sen. Kennedy's endorsement," NOW President Kim Gandy said. "We continue to encourage women everywhere to express their opinions and exercise their right to vote."Kennedy's office has not returned CNN's request for comment.


To the extent the media is all but ignoring the fact that millions of Florida Democrats are casting ballots today as well as the GOP, the DNC has failed us all by allowing once again the spotlight to be on the Republicans NOT the Democrats. Michigan of course faced the same fate just last week. Senator Clinton took 57% of Michigan's Democratic vote. Did you hear of that "Land slide" victory? NO. The media once again has been unfair to the Clinton campaign. Having said that, if you live in Florida, PLEASE VOTE TODAY!!!

Monday, 28 January 2008

Last but not least...

The law 493/99 rules domestic work with an assurance for all Housewives whom work is recognized by article 6 of the Chapter III: " Lo Stato riconosce e tutela il lavoro svolto in ambito domestico, affermandone il valore sociale ed economico connesso agli indiscutibili vantaggi che da tale attività trae l'intera collettività. A tale fine, il presente capo introduce misure finalizzate alla tutela dal rischio infortunistico per invalidità permanente derivante dal lavoro svolto in ambito domestico" ; "the italian state recognize and protect domestic work, saying it is of a high social and economic value for the entire society. Therefore with this law is introduced an obbligatory assurance for all housewives [...]".
But it is of today the news, but we italian women known this well, that the labour market is not easy, we are on the 29 place in the european women in labour ranking, this is the considerations of the Director of the Censis (Centro Studi Investimenti Sociali- Italian Investment Research Center) who proposes some recipes as more services to families as Kindergartens or assistance to old people, but not to women only!, more collaboration in families between men and women and to do so no economic reliefs to families because it will be detriment for women who will be not stimulate to work.
Good words I say but the reality is that just few days ago I couldn't get a work because I'm a women and I may stay pregnant, It's a reality that in factories don't exist kindergardens, that a woman have to work twice from morning to night and It's good to increase the collaboration between men and women but it's not increasing the age for the pension as the same level of men that we create equality; I think that improvements must be done thinking to the differences and recognizing them not amalgamating all always under a male point of view.
And, last but not least, I want to remind to this guy who afferm: "Finchè questo non avverrà l'Italia rimarrà un paese da terzo mondo"; "Untill this (all the points viewed upon) will be not create Italy will rest as an african state", taht in Africa there are more women in parlament than in our democratic and healthy (?) Italy.

Monday, 21 January 2008

Gaspara Stampa

Gaspara Stampa was born in Padua in 1525, in a middle class family. At the death of her father, Bartolomeo, her family moved to Venice in 1531. There, she got in touch with some academical societies which bring her few important knowledge of that time; joined Petrarc current wrote some poems and rhymes considered the most well done and sensual writings of the italian women letterature.

Few times after the moving in Venice her brother Baldassarre, a good intellectual too, died and this event impressed  her  and her sister Cassandra, who attended the most important authorities of the venetian society too, very much.

Her personal life, or better her personal way of life, definied "libertine" has always divide the historical to consider her or not as a courtesan, inscribed in the venetian catalogue in which courtesans of high and raffinate education were inscribed with the relative prize but there weren't such tests, as for example Veronica Franco, an other italian writer of that same period.

Her sentimental life was of inspiration, she felt in love with an important aristocratic called Collaltino di Collalto who reciprocated her love in a very surface way after his abandonment, her heart become shaken and choose to think about a new flame: Bartolomeo Zen.

Her artistic expression is tracked in "The Rhymes" (Rime) a huge volume of her works (311 compositions) but she was also a good singer and musician.

She died  in Venice in 1554 for an intestinal fever, and her work "The Rhymes" was published by her sister Cassandra.

This poem is an example of her talent:

S'avien ch'un giorno Amor a me mi renda,e mi ritolga a questo empio signore;di che paventa e non vorrebbe, il core,tal gioia del penar suo par che prenda;voi chiamerete invan la mia stupendafede, e l'immenso e smisurato amore,di vostra crudeltà, di vostro erroretardi pentite, ove non è chi intenda.Ed io cantando la mia libertade,da così duri lacci e crudi sciolta,passerò lieta a la futura etade.E, se giusto pregar in ciel s'ascolta,vedrò forse anco in man di crudeltadela vita vostra a mia vendetta involta.

"Rime d'amore" ,IX, Gaspara Stampa

Her malaise for her lover duke Collaltino di Collalto, who had never time for her, probably inspired this poem full of passion and pain:

Se voi non foste a maggior cose vòlto,onde 'l vostro splendor, Venier, sormonte,avendo sì gran stil, rime sì pronte,e de' lacci d'Amore essendo sciolto,vi pregherei che 'l valor e 'l bel voltoe l'altre grazie del mio chiaro contea la futura età faceste cònte,poi che 'l poterlo fare a me è tolto;e faceste ancor cònto il foco mioe la mia fede oltra ogni fede ardente,degna d'eterna vita, e non d'oblio.Ma, poi degno rispetto nol consente,vedrò, tal qual io sono, adombrarn'iouna minima parte solamente.

Rime, CCLII, Gaspara Stampa

Thursday, 10 January 2008

Gabriela Mistral

Today, in 1957, died in New York a great poet, first latin american woman to win the Nobel Prize for Litterature in 1945, she was Gabriela Mistral, born Lucila de María del Perpetuo Socorro Godoy Alcayaga in Vicuña, Chile, in 1889.

Her works show a very intimate themes of sorrow, maternity, death and love, themes that she knew trough her life when her first love lost life, when her beloved mother died, when her nephew also had suicide. She had a great life in satisfactions but also in misfortunes.
In her life she was a teacher and in her job among her students had, as a pupil, Pablo Neruda who encouraged to write.

She is known to be a poet, a teacher and a feminist, here is a little poem from Tala (Destruction) , her first book dedicated to her mother died in the meanwhile she wrote this work and from Desolaciòn.


"En la tierra seremos reinas,
y de verídico reinar, y siendo grandes nuestros
reinos, llegaremeos todas al mar

from "Tala";


La mujer que no mece un hijo en el regazo,(cuyo calor y aroma alcance a sus entrañas),tiene una laxitud de mundo entre los brazos;todo su corazón congoja inmensa baña.

El lirio le recuerda unas sienes de infante;el Angelus le pide otra boca con ruego;e interroga la fuente de seno de diamantepor qué su labio quiebra el cristal en sosiego.

Y al contemplar sus ojos se acuerda de la azada;piensa que en los de un hijo no mirará extasiada,al vaciarse sus ojos, los follajes de octubre.

Con doble temblor oye el viento en los cipreses.¡Y una mendiga grávida, cuyo seno florececual la parva de enero, de vergüenza la cubre!

from "Desolación" .

Monday, 7 January 2008

The Befana day

In Italy, on 6th January is the "Befana day", Befana is the name of a witch which brings sweet and candy to good children and coal (made of sugar) to bad ones in a socks on the fireplace. Originally this was a pagan rite which in some forms is still found nowadays in local and traditional manifestations held in some regions of Italy in which a witch puppet is burned to represent the archaic pagan meaning of the old that rebirth; the old woman in fact is the old past year and gifts are a well wishes for the new year coming.

The legend says that the old woman met the Re Magi "Three Kings" which invited her to joint the trip to Betlem to adore Jesus but she refused and the morning after she would reach them but can't found the Little Baby Jesus, so from that time she brings gifts to children all over the world hoping one of them could be Jesus and so to be forgive.

Catholicism just in III century a.C. commemorate the divine Jesus manifestations, such as miracles, on the 6th of January with the greek word of Epifania, meaning "divine manifestation" which is the alternative name of the "Befana day" also nowadays.
Emperor Costantino in IV century wanted to eradicate the pagan Sun holiday, on the 25th december, so decided to move the holiday for the birth of Jesus anticipating that day from the 6th Jannuary to 25th December, and on 6th January putted the visit of the Three Kings adoring Baby Jesus.

The Befana represent for me an alternative to Santa Claus, who needs reindeers and elfs, because she is indipendent, she is very active, and give an alternative use of the broom! ;) a good example for all also for Santa and his waist!.
There is a Befana/witch in every woman, so I don't complain when on 6th January people say to me: "Good Befana!"... Perhaps because of the italian feminist slogan of the 60's: "tremble tremble, witches are back!!!"