Fab Five: Feminism at WORD Christchurch 2021

Can't decide what WORD sessions to go to? We give you 5 hot tips on a hot topic.
Interested in women's rights? Here are some WORD sessions for you:

Remembering Helen Kelly

Unionist Helen Kelly's biographer Rebecca Macfie (Tragedy at Pike River Mine) speaks with journalist turned lecturer Jo Malcolm about the life, times and legacy of a woman who ‘never shirked a fight’, whether it was with the Ports of Auckland or with hobbits, and who earned the humour and respect even of those she so vehemently opposed.

Thursday 11 November 12pm to 1pm

Sue Kedgley: Fifty Years a Feminist

Ever since 1971, when she and other students carried a coffin through Albert Park to lament the state of women’s rights, Sue Kedgley’s name has been synonymous with Second Wave feminism in this country. An activist was born that day, and her new memoir, Fifty Years a Feminist, tracks a dynamic life through journalism and politics, fobbing off men along the way, because ‘if we succumbed or capitulated to sex, that could ruin our marriage prospects’. How far does she think the women’s movement has come? Are men still standing in the way? She swaps stories from the frontlines and discusses the state of feminism with Christchurch Mayor Lianne Dalziel.

Friday 12 November 10am to 11am

Helen Clark: The Big Issues

Helen Clark‘s work has brought her close to the two most urgent issues of our time: climate change and the coronavirus pandemic. Last year, Clark took on the task of co-chairing the Independent Panel for Pandemic Preparedness and Response, an impartial and comprehensive review of the internationally co-ordinated response to COVID-19. As editor of the new anthology Climate Aotearoa Clark brings together New Zealand experts to examine the climate situation as it is now, as it will be in the years to come, and what we can do about it. In this essential hour, she discusses the findings of the COVID report, published in May, and the book, and what needs to happen to avert future catastrophe for both the planet and its occupants. In conversation with the University of Canterbury’s Bronwyn Hayward.

Friday 12 November 5.30pm to 6.30pm

Adventurous Women

Once again, WORD takes you on an adventurous night of storytelling with five incredible women who take risks in their personal and professional lives, hosted by journalism teacher and compulsive reader Jo Malcolm. Kyle Mewburn’s memoir Faking It is an account of growing up and outwardly becoming the woman she always was; Julie Zarifeh countered unimaginable tragedy with travel and an adventurous spirit; Anjum Rahman stands up for the voices of Muslim women to be heard; Emily Writes is a bold voice for mothers and children online and in books; and Dr Hinemoa Elder’s bestselling book Aroha shows us how we can live with love, compassion and empathy. Book early for a night like no other! Please note: Hinemoa Elder and Anjum Rahman will now be appearing via video link, and the event will now be hosted by Jo Malcolm.

Friday 12 November 8pm to 9.30pm

Helen Garner at The Faraway Near

‘I may be an old woman,’ she wrote in the Guardian last year, ‘but I’m not done for yet.’ At 79, Helen Garner has been a formidable voice in Australian literature for decades, with novels including Monkey Grip and The Spare Room, and hard-hitting non-fiction such as This House of Grief and 1995’s controversial The First Stone, about a sexual-harassment scandal in a university college. Now she has started breaking open her diaries – including the latest volume, How to End a Story – which vividly record a life of hard work and tumultuous relationships, and which explore professional and personal earthquakes. She discusses her life and work, live from her home in Melbourne, with broadcaster and former festival director Morrin Rout.

Saturday 13 November 6.30pm to 7.30pm

Recommended reading

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