The Feminism of Uncertainty: A Gender Diary
Ann Snitow is Associate Professor of Literature and Gender Studies at Lang College, The New School, in New York City. A longtime activist, Snitow has cofounded The Network of East-West Women, No More Nice Girls, and New York Radical Feminists. She has written for The Village Voice, The Nation, The Women’s Review of Books, Dissent, and many other publications, and is coeditor of Powers of Desire: The Politics of Sexuality and The Feminist Memoir Project: Voices from Women's Liberation.
Feminism Travels: Cautionary Tales
Snitow was a founder of a non-governmental organization (NGO), the Network of East-West Women, which had the intention to link feminists in US women’s movements to feminists trying to create independent women’s movements in East Central Europe post-1989. In an earlier piece she listed the various resistances such organizing encountered. In this second take, Snitow makes a new list, this time of the weaknesses of NGOs in general, and, particularly in the region. The list includes: various kinds of ignorance; the stress placed on community by unequal resources; common linguistic and social misunderstandings; distortions introduced by some kinds of outside “help”; false trails towards empowerment; cynical manipulations of new discourses towards neo-liberal ends. The goal was to put up warnings signs, not to discourage the urgent impetus to create structures in which international feminism can struggle to define shared goals and create solidarity among activists all over the world.