Manifesto for South Feminist Organizing

We group of South feminists who came together at the 62nd Commission on the Status of Women (CSW62), in New York, March 12-23, 2018, at a space hosted by RESURJ and DIVA for Equality Fiji and who believe that sexual and reproductive justice enables social, economic, political, and ecological decision-making. While we do not represent the Global South in its entirety and complexities, this manifesto is an attempt at mapping our political imaginings and aspirations for South feminist organizing across generations, movements and struggles. 

Our feminist organizing will adhere to the values of: 

Power sharing and accountability. We practice our feminist accountability by experimenting with and questioning existing power dynamics and by imagining new forms of powers that share knowledge, praxis, access, and resources. 

Collectivity and interlinkages. We are committed to protect and celebrate ourselves and each other in our organizing towards the liberation of our bodies, territories, other species, and the planet. 

Intersectionality. There is no such thing as a single issue; we have to deal with intersecting forms of oppression on a daily basis. Therefore, we will not deprive our activisms and organizing from their intersectionality. 

Sexual sovereignty. Sexual autonomy and pleasure are integral to our organizing and extend beyond universal identity politics. Recognizing that discourse around sexuality takes its roots in feminist politics and the way sexuality spills over other areas of life, we work towards demystifying feminist knowledge, and for political, economic, ecological, and social transformation. 

Taking sides. We will take a stance against sexism, racism, classism, ableism, xenophobia, misogyny, homophobia, and other forms of discrimination wherever we find them, including within our own movements and communities.

Disruption, not destruction. We consider it our duty to dismantle all sites of oppressive power. When we face them in our movements, we will deal with them in a disruptive way, but we will not be destructive towards each other. Instead, we will bring to light our histories, our differences, and our multitudes. 

Accomplices not allies. We will not tokenize each other and we will not be tokenized by our allies. Instead, we will foster a culture of accomplices across South feminist movements and generations away from the ally industrial complex. Unlearning and learning as a constant, ongoing process, in order to build and break. 

Clarity and honesty. We are committed to working through discomforts by being willing to engage in difficult conversations, even when we are called out. We will be honest, authentic, assertive, caring, and loving with ourselves, one another, and the movements we are part of. 

Deliberation. Our feminist organizing is intentionally care-filled, purposeful, and nimble. We will hold each other; we will call each other out for us, for our movements to be safer and to grow. We will believe in our feminism and grow with the feminisms of others.