LESSONS FROM ROMA FEMINISM IN EUROPE Digital Storytelling Projects with Roma Women Activists from Romania, Spain and Sweden
Sammanfattning: This multi-sited ethnographic research explores Roma feminism through the stories of Roma women activists participating in Digital Storytelling projects in Romania, Spain and Sweden. Drawing from relevant feminist theory and debates (intersectionality and Roma feminist theory, transnational feminism, liberal and cultural/different-centered feminist thought), these stories are understood in dialogue with different theoretical perspectives that both reproduce patterns of conflicts in feminist thought and create new ways of understanding feminism and solidarity based on a transnational context. The Digital Storytelling method was mainly supported by Feminist Participatory Action Research (FPAR) and feminist theories on knowledge production, which helped the research participants discuss feminist theory grounded in their activist experiences, beyond and as a critique to the academia. The projects conveyed the nuances of everyday life for Roma women activists: the perceived conflict between ‘community’ and ‘feminism’, ‘picking one’s battles,’ the self in a collective, the personal and political, family and expectations, compromises, mental health and the stress of everyday life, education and employment, oppressive notions of strength and weakness within the activist community, self-expression and the struggle with sexuality. Interestingly, this project also enhanced fruitful contradictions in discussions on identity. Understanding these stories as theories, Roma feminism was explored in the connections between theory and practice.
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