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Join Danish Debate & Dialogue Festival on Feminism

Talk Town is a feminist debate festival taking place May 20th-22nd, online combined with on ground events at Union in Copenhagen. Among others, you can meet Turkish-British Author Elif Shafak, Iranian reporter Masih Alinejad, Author Chris Kraus, Textile workers from Myanmar and women´s and human rights activits from e.g. Poland, Turkey, Lebanon, Tunesia, Uganda, Nigeria and Ghana. Debates, talks and workshops are for free.

Download the full programme here(link) or read about events in English below

Gender Equality in Denmark’s foreign and development policy (May 20 at 12 AM )

Hosts: Women’s Council Denmark, MSActionAid, Globalt Fokus, Sex & Samfund

Feminist foreign policy is gaining ground as countries like Sweden, Canada and Mexico adopt the concept. But what about Denmark? Will we have feminist principles guiding our external policies, and how? Experts and politicians debate this in relation to Denmark’s strategy for development cooperation.

Debunking the myth of the trafficked woman (May 20 at 1 PM)

Hosts: The Red Van

Over the past few decades, Western countries have cultivated a specific, rigid image around sex trafficking. In this panel discussion, The Red Van will dig into the myth of ‘the trafficked woman’ and separate fact from fiction with the help of two researchers. At the event, pur panelists (TBA) and moderator Polina Bachlakova will illuminate how the myth of ‘the trafficked woman’ functions as a potent tool to justify a wide variety of state policies. Last but not least, we’ll discuss the nuances that exist in migrant sex work and trafficking – and discuss the difference between the two.

Activist strategies countering digital violence (May 20 at 3 PM)

Hosts: Kvinfo, OXFAM Ibis, EuroMedRights

Presenters from Denmark, Palestine, Lebanon and Morocco will be part of this event. The goal is to present different activist approaches against digital violence as well as creating a basis of knowledge through a report on the subject. Suggestions on solutions to this increasing problem will be posed with a discussion at the end of the event.

Elif Şafak – a talk on literature and women’s rights (May 20 at 3 PM)

Host: Women’s Council Denmark

Elif Şafak is an award-winning British-Turkish novelist. She writes in both Turkish and English and has published 18 books, 11 of which are novels. Her work has been translated into 55 languages. Her latest novel 10 Minutes 38 Seconds in This Strange World was shortlisted for the Booker Prize, the RSL Ondaatje Prize and chosen as Blackwell’s Book of the Year. Her previous novel, The Forty Rules of Love was chosen by BBC among 100 Novels that Shaped Our World. Şafak holds a PhD in political science, and she has taught at various universities in Turkey, the US and the UK, including St Anne’s College and Oxford University where she is an honorary fellow. Yıldız Akdoğan, Columnist, MA Political Science and former MP will be interviewing.

The Debt Pandemic: Women, Debt and Inequality (May 20 at 4 PM)

host: DIIS

Debt is an often overlooked feminist issue. This talk sheds light on local and global dynamics that cause women in poverty to end up in debt to credit institutions, family members, loan sharks and criminals. How might we begin to see debt not as an individual, but as a structural problem?

A Feminist Vision for Peace (May 20 at 4:30 PM)

Host: OXFAM Ibis

Mainstream approaches to peace and security are masculinised and militarised and take place in exclusionary spaces which continue to block women’s meaningful engagement. This event wants to challenge the dominant frame of militarisation through the lens of feminist peace and explores why peace and security should be an important part of feminist work.

Women and queers in the frontline of protest movements (May 20 at 6 PM)

Host: Nyt Europa, Women’s Council Denmark, LGBT+ DK, Globalt Fokus

Women and LGBTQI+ advocates are often at the forefront of global protests for socio-economic and democratic rights. Listen to a conversation between feminist advocates from protest movements in Poland, Tunisia and USA/Mexico on why gender and feminism are pivotal in the fight for change.

Women’s rights in global hotspots (May 21 at 10:30 AM)

Host: DanChurchAid, Maternity Foundation, Sex & Samfund

Women’s rights activists from Palestine and Uganda talk about their struggle to end gender-based violence and promote women’s rights amid crisis and conflict. Doctor Haifaa Awad, Danish NGO-leaders and Minister for Development Flemming Møller Mortensen reflect on how to ally from Denmark.

Realities, struggles and inclusion of queer migrants in Denmark (May 21 at 11.30 AM)

Host: LGBT+ Danmark

How can we, LGBTQIA+ migrants, be meaningfully included in social, legal and activist environments? Join the discussion! After the panel discussion, join our roundtables to share your experience, explore how queer migrants’ lives can be improved in Denmark and connect with other LGBTQIA+ migrants.

10 Years with the Istanbul Convention: Why the Controversy? (May 21 at 12 AM)

Host: Women’s Council Denmark, Amnesty International

Turkey marks the 10-year of the Istanbul Convention – a landmark treaty to combat violence against women – by pulling out. And others might follow due to critique of it interfering with “family values”. The talk engages Turkish activists on this set-back on women’s rights and how to counter it.

Masih Alinjead: Women´s rights and the role of Media ( May 21 at 5 PM)

Host: International Media Support, Women’s Council Denmark

Meet Masih Alinjead, a prominent Iranian women’s rights activist and journalist, who will discuss women’s rights and media’s role, responsibility and challenges in promoting gender equality in a conversation with Andreas Reventlow, Deputy Director at media development organisation IMS (International Media Support). Masih Alinjead has extensive both personal and professional experiences within the field, which include imprisonment for critical writings, fleeing her home country and founding the My Stealthy Freedom campaign that advocates against compulsory hijab.

Blood og Politics in East Africa (May 22 at 11:30 AM)

Host: SheForShe

Lack of access to menstrual products is a human rights issue.” – WHO, 2014. Hvorfor kan menstruation være livsfarligt i 2020, og hvornår bliver blod politisk? I denne paneldebat vil Mary Namagambe og Marianne Olsen give et internationalt perspektiv på ligestilling og livet med menstruation. Mary Consolata Namagambe (SheForShe) og Marianne Stæhr Olsen (FordiDetNytter) er begge forkvinder for organisationer, der arbejder i hhv. Uganda og Kenya for kvinders ligestilling, skolegang og sundhed.

The value of women – unpaid and underpaid care work(May 22 at 12 AM)

Host: OXFAM Ibis

The work efforts of women all around the world is systematically undervalued. There is no place on earth where women earn the same as men despite the fact that women consistently work more hours than men when counting house work.
Society simply does not value childcare, nursing, health services and other forms of care work as much as engineering or construction. We just assume that women will do it, whether or not they get paid.
During this event, we look at how gender inequality within the care economy effects women in different parts of the world. How can we influence society to stop viewing care work as a burden and an expense that needs to be kept low, instead of valuing and acknowledging this extremely important work?
During the event, we will have a conversation among activists in Denmark and in the Middle East. We look at differences and commonalities in women’s struggle for equal pay and acknowledgment of care work in these two very different contexts. And we seek to explore what we can learn from each other as feminist activists.
Oxfam IBIS works for women’s rights all over the world. In collaboration with the Danish Arab Partnership Programme, we work for economic independence and inclusion of marginalised groups in the Middle East and North Africa. For this event, we have invited some of our strong feminist partners from the region, to share their experiences, tools and knowledge in the struggle to acknowledge and value care work within care sectors and households.
The event will be in English.

Women in the forefront against the military in Myanmar (May 22 at 1:30 PM)

Host: Ulandssekretariatet

Meet Khaing Zar who is a key person in the trade union movement in Myanmar and has worked to improve working conditions for textile workers. She is also part of the Civil Disobedience Movement which has challenged the military after their recent coup. Khaing Zar will talk about the trade unions role in promoting democracy and equality in Myanmar.

Feminist strategies, movements and best practises from west Africa (May 22 at 6 PM)

Host: Amnesty International

Feminist movements, organisations and activists have been in the forefront pushing for change and equality in West Africa and globally, for example during the recent #EndSars protests in Nigeria. During the corona pandemic we have seen a surge in violence against women both globally and in West Africa. In this debate, we will hear about the strategies and best practises from feminist activists and organisations from Nigeria and Ghana as well as Amnesty’s offices there. We will also get input on how we can show solidarity without reproducing colonial stereotypes.

Chris Kraus og Emma Holten (May 22 at 6 PM)

Hosts: Talk Town, Ovo Press

Conversation between Chris Krauss and Emma Holten about her newest novel, Aliens and Anorexia and much more.


About Talk Town
Talk Town is a Danish debate festival focusing on equality, gender and feminism. It is a democratic forum for debate, networking and learning. Every year we invite organisations, activists, policymakers, artists and individuals from Denmark and internationally to join in on the creation of meaningful conversations about equality, gender and feminism. Everybody is welcome, as long as they live up to our code of conduct.

Follow us on Instagram: @talktown // #talktown // #talktown2021

For further details on the international programme, kindly contact Anna Villumsen: / +4560568087