30 episodes

Your host, Meghan Murphy, explores feminist perspectives on everything from pop culture to politics, from hot-off-the-press news stories to cultural trends. If it's happening to women, we're talking about it. Through interviews and discussion, Meghan brings you fresh, powerful, radical voices from the global feminist movement that leave listeners feeling inspired and bold, ready to take on the (patriarchal) world.

Feminist Current Meghan Murphy

    • Society & Culture

Your host, Meghan Murphy, explores feminist perspectives on everything from pop culture to politics, from hot-off-the-press news stories to cultural trends. If it's happening to women, we're talking about it. Through interviews and discussion, Meghan brings you fresh, powerful, radical voices from the global feminist movement that leave listeners feeling inspired and bold, ready to take on the (patriarchal) world.

    PODCAST: Stella Perrett on why free speech and satire should matter to feminists

    PODCAST: Stella Perrett on why free speech and satire should matter to feminists

    Credit: Stella Perrett
    Stella Perrett was a political cartoonist for the UK’s only socialist daily newspaper, The Morning Star, from 2015 to 2020. She had published cartoons criticizing capitalism, the police, Brexit, the American president, and more. It wasn’t until Stella drew a cartoon called “Endgame,” commenting on the impact of potential changes to the Gender Recognition Act on women’s rights, that she ran into trouble. After complaints from trans activists and leftists like Owen Jones online, who said the cartoon was “transphobic,” The Morning Star pulled the cartoon.
    I spoke with Stella on May 11th about her career, her views on censorship, the value of satire, the Charlie Hebdo massacre, why feminists and the left need to stand up for free speech and free expression, and more.

    • 1 hr 1 min
    PODCAST: Women as ‘breeders’ — Renate Klein on the harms of surrogacy

    PODCAST: Women as ‘breeders’ — Renate Klein on the harms of surrogacy

    Renate Klein, author of “Surrogacy: A Human Rights Violation”
    We hear about surrogacy routinely in the media, almost consistently in a celebratory way — a baby is gifted to a loving and deserving family. Celebrities announce they are “having a baby” via a surrogate and face almost no criticism. But what’s really behind the practice? Why are we so accepting of a clearly unethical and exploitative industry?
    In this episode, I speak with Renate Klein to learn more about the multitude of harms caused by this practice around the world. Renate is a feminist health activist, an original signatory to Stop Surrogacy Now,  a founder of FINRRAGE (Feminist International Network of Resistance to Reproductive and Genetic Engineering), co-founder of Spinifex Press, and author of Surrogacy: A Human Rights Violation.

    • 1 hr 4 min
    PODCAST: A global feminist perspective on the COVID-19 pandemic is needed

    PODCAST: A global feminist perspective on the COVID-19 pandemic is needed

    The COVID-19 pandemic has been hard on everyone. But imagine if you were impoverished, a migrant, or living in close quarters with no way to socially isolate. What if you were a prostituted woman? A domestic worker? What if you were trapped in an abusive relationship, with nowhere to go? How have the pandemic and the lockdowns impacted the most marginalized among us? And how have exploitative industries — like the porn industry — profited? How have women, in particular, been impacted? How could we better support these women? Can we really continue to pretend as though sex is a social construct, rather than a material reality, considering the different ways males and females are impacted by coronavirus?
    This week, I talk to Anna Zobnina, coordinator of the European Network of Migrant Women, a migrant-women led platform of NGOs that works, in the spirit of intersectional feminism, for the rights of migrant women in Europe; a member of the executive committee of the European Women’s Lobby; a former research analyst with the Mediterranean Institute of Gender Studies; and a selected expert with the European Institute for Gender Equality.
    Read her article, “Global Feminist Perspective on the Pandemic: What ‘normal’ do we expect when the crisis is over?” at migrantwomennetwork.org

    • 52 min
    PODCAST: Michelle Mara on the truth about the decriminalized sex trade in New Zealand

    PODCAST: Michelle Mara on the truth about the decriminalized sex trade in New Zealand

    Michelle Mara is a British-born survivor of the sex trade in New Zealand. She is a single mother of four who writes and speaks about her experiences in prostitution in New Zealand, including as a madam, during prohibition as well as after the trade was fully decriminalized. Michelle has been a refugee support worker for Somali women in Wellington, a foster parent for Native American (Lakota) children in South Dakota, a mental health and disability advocate, social support advisor for young families during the aftermath of 9/11 in the U.S Military, and has voluntarily housed numerous at risk teens. She advocates for the Equality/Nordic model and co-founded Wahine Toa Rising NZ, a survivor-led organization supporting sexually exploited women and girls, currently working towards establishing exit supports and services, as well as a refuge/safe house for vulnerable women wanting to exit prostitution.

    I spoke with her from her home in New Zealand on March 25th, 2020.

    PODCAST: Indian filmmaker Vaishnavi Sundar made a film about sexual harassment, then got cancelled by liberal feminists

    PODCAST: Indian filmmaker Vaishnavi Sundar made a film about sexual harassment, then got cancelled by liberal feminists

    Vaishnavi Sundar
    Last month, a scheduled screening of Vaishnavi Sundar’s film, But What Was She Wearing? was abruptly cancelled. Vaishnavi was told, a week before the screening, that the event was cancelled because of her “transphobic” views. This was in reference, she discovered, to some tweets she had posted about gender identity politics online, including questioning whether males who identify as transgender should be allowed to complete against and with women in sport, be transferred to female prisons, or use women’s change rooms. Vaishnavi had spent three years on the film, interviewing women in India about their experiences of sexual harassment and assault in the workplace. She published an article about the ordeal in Spiked earlier this month, titled, “I was cancelled for my tweets on transgenderism.”
    In it, she writes:
    “I grew up in Avadi in the south of India. I have spent most of my life working with marginalised women. But I was simply not the right flavour of woke for the postmodern, queer-theory espousing desis of Manhattan.
    I have since confronted the editors of the publications that blacklisted me. It appears that Indian trans-rights activists googled my name and wrote to every outlet I had ever been published in, telling them about my ‘TERFy’ tweets.
    By being outcast, I was essentially being told that the feminism I live by — the feminism of Mary Wollstonecraft, Emmeline Pankhurst and Andrea Dworkin — was exclusionary because it rejected males in female safe spaces. My intersectionality wasn’t expansive enough to accommodate men. My feminism did not embrace the ‘choice’ of carrying water for patriarchy. Advocating for women’s safety was ‘anti-trans’, the meaning of which I am still struggling to understand. I am not ‘anti’ anything except the endless derivative forms of misogyny.”
    Vaishnavi Sundar is an independent filmmaker, feminist, writer, and women’s rights activist from Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India. She is the founder of Women Making Films and Lime Soda Films, and is currently conducting research for a new film about the effect of microfinance on women.
    I spoke with her over the phone this week.
    To watch But what was she wearing, visit: https://gumroad.com/vaishax

    • 48 min
    PODCAST: Authorities ignored the girls being exploited by grooming gangs in Northern England; Julie Bindel didn’t

    PODCAST: Authorities ignored the girls being exploited by grooming gangs in Northern England; Julie Bindel didn’t

    Over a decade ago, Julie Bindel was the first to report on the so-called “grooming gangs” exploiting working class girls in a number of towns in Northern England. Thousands of victims were sexually abused and sold to adult men, yet the police and the media didn’t want to address it. Because the gangs were made up of Pakistani men, media and the authorities claimed they didn’t want to touch the issue for fear of being accused of racism. Two recently released reports revealed social workers and the police in South Yorkshire and Greater Manchester knew girls were being abused, yet failed to take action. How and why did this fly under the radar for so long?
    In this episode, I speak with Julie Bindel, a journalist, prolific author, and feminist campaigner, from her home in London, to learn more about the issues surrounding the scandal.

    • 39 min

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