Apr 22 2013

Empowering Women Through Secularism

The poster alone should convince you to go (Hi, Taslima!). See you in Dublin, 29-30 June!



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  1. 1

    Ní saoirse go saoirse na mban.

  2. 2

    I see Smurthwaite is still listed. Is there a speaker invited who might speak about how sex work is being marginalized even within supposedly women-supportive spaces? cuz if not, this unfortunately has a look of “empowering women (except sex workers) through secularism”.

    To quote myself from another comment thread on this topic:

    here are better links about her connection to and support for anti-sex-work stuff

    from her own blog:

    and she’s a member of the London Feminist Network (according to her guardian profile), which is the group that created the “Feminist Coalition Against Prostitution” campaign.

    and she also participated in another anti-sex-work project called Object.

    so yeah. that would be a bit of a blemish on the whole thing, to have the anti-sex-work side represented (esp. given that Taslima herself holds anti-sex-work positions), but no sex-worker’s rights advocates :-/

    sooo…. please tell me there’s at least one sex worker’s rights advocate speaking…? just one…?

  3. 3

    blockquote fail. the second blockquote was supposed to actually be non-quoted :-p

  4. 4
    Minnie The Finn, Fluffy Pink Bearer of Loose Morals

    Due to *circumstances* and shit, I may have to cancel attending Stockholm, but I’m seriously looking into Dublin as a more reasonable alternative.

    Who else is coming? I mean, we all KNOW that Taslima Nasrin and Maryam Namazie and Rebecca Watson are coming. Plus a multitude of other brilliant speakers – and apparently some bearded guy from Minnesota. But are any ‘real’ people coming? =)

  5. 5
    PZ Myers

    Jadehawk: Write to Mick Nugent. He’s the man organizing it all. (I hope there are also women involved!)

  6. 6

    Hmmm. Might just be doable, assuming no late exams.

    Of course, that still leaves the money issue.

  7. 7

    why does Atheist Ireland not have an e-mail address anywhere? *grump*

    anyway, e-mail sent. I can be such a dolt sometimes, that it didn’t occur to me to sent that e-mail the first time ’round I mentioned my concerns.

  8. 8
    Minnie The Finn, Fluffy Pink Bearer of Loose Morals

    Sili: I’ve put out feelers with friends & relatives in Dublin. If I find out about something manageable price-wise or even free-ish (like maybe my ex-SILs’ sofa or something), I’ll let you know.

  9. 9


    Not sure I count as real but I’ll be there.

  10. 10

    Women’s rights are human rights… and looking at the poster I have to ask,does that include sex workers?

    The hypocrisy, it burns.

  11. 11


    I disagree with some things Taslima says too. But I’m not afraid to ask her questions about it at conferences and I don’t dismiss entire conferences because her face is on the poster. She also says some great things: it’s not like Rupert fucking Shelldrake is on the poster and the conference will be about how to masturbate yourself to sheer oblivion. It’s not as though the speakers – including Taslima – won’t be receptive to questions and very likely sitting around in the bar afterwards to discuss things like this.

    I find Taslima’s views on some things troubling, but it just makes me want to ask her about them, not to dismiss entire conferences as bad because she’s there. Whatever my disagreements with her, she’s a brilliant speaker and if you haven’t seen her perform then you’re missing out.

    I disagree with some things Richard Dawkins says too, especially lately, but I’d still go and listen to him talk because he still has a lot of good things to say. If he said something I disagreed with, I’d pick him up about it or at least blog sternly about it afterwards. A couple of weeks ago I went to a talk on my academic subject specifically *because* I disagreed with the speaker. I made a nuisance of myself in the Q&A and had a rewarding chat with the speaker over a few drinks afterward. There’s a good chance we might even collaborate on a paper because the reason we disagree is very interesting.

    I’m generally a big fan of Michael Nugent, but I really don’t understand some of the things he’s been doing recently. So you know what? Rather than not go to the conference I’m going to go and ask him about it. I might come away understanding him or liking him a little less, who knows? BUT THAT IS WHAT THESE GATHERINGS ARE FOR.

  12. 12

    Fuck, I’m angry about this now. Do you know why the charges that FtB is some kind of echo chamber are stupid? Because the bloggers tend to listen and respond to criticism. And when they don’t, the criticism is still out there, not deleted and we get to whip ourselves up into a frenzy about that. Everyone wins.

    Who the fuck wants to sit in a conference for 2 days where everyone says bland things they know everyone will agree with? Personally, I want to go to conferences with speakers like me: people I generally agree with but who sometimes say stupid shit I can argue with.

  13. 13

    I’m generally a big fan of Michael Nugent, but I really don’t understand some of the things he’s been doing recently. So you know what? Rather than not go to the conference I’m going to go and ask him about it.

    Same here. Should be fun.

  14. 14


    See you there. You’ll be the one with the carnation, trenchcoat, hat, mask and murderous intent. You’ll recognise me because I don’t wear a hat.

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