Feminism FOR REAL Vancouver Book Launch
By Angela Marie MacDougall

On Thursday, April 14, 2011, Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives CCPA Site Here hosted the Vancouver book launch of Feminism FOR REAL: Deconstructing the Academic Industrial Complex of Feminism edited by Jessica Yee.  The anthology asks and in a profound way answers the question, “Has capital ‘F’ Feminism become its own form of oppression?”

Feminsm ForREal Standing room only at Rhizome Cafe – Photo courtesy of Fernanda Selayzin D Souza

The anthology confronts many uncomfortable truths about the birth and evolution of mainstream and academic feminism.  Held within the pages are the writings of women and men sharing their voice and making visible the experiences of many feminists who heroically fight every day for space, justice, for rights, yet who are rendered invisible and voiceless within mainstream and academic feminism. Table of Contents

The book launch was held at Rhizome Café located at 317 East Broadway, in Vancouver.  Rhizome is a wonderful neighbourhood café serving healthy, fresh food while hosting events in collaboration with community groups that are working toward a more just, sustainable world for all.  http://www.rhizomecafe.ca

After an opening address by Hlamomsim Anon aka Bambie Tait, Wilps Luus, Gitxsan Nation and two hand drum songs from Terry Azak, Nisga’a Nation, Jessica Yee read the introductory chapter of the book Introduction then played a recording of “The Grand-Mother’s Spirit,” a political tale she performed, at ReBELLEs conference a few years back.

BWSS2FeminismFORREAL (l to r )Natalie Clark, Angela Marie MacDougall, Farah Larki & Andrea Canales – Photo courtesy of Fernanda Selayzin D Souza

Fran Smith from Battered Women’s Support Services Fran Smithspoke about her experiences doing front line work to end violence against women.  There was a special appearance by Beverley Jacobs, Beverley Jacobs HOC Addressformer president of Native Women’s Association of Canada who spoke about the power of women and men working together in all our communities to heal our communities and to end violence against women.  Gloria Larocque, from KETA Society, KETA Society spoke about her work to bring the voices of Indigenous women to the centre of the discourse and the action within academia, community and feminism.

From Battered Women’s Support Services numerous volunteers, staff and women who are accessing our support services were present.  We took this opportunity to reflect on our feminism and our feminist action to end violence against women in our individual lives and in our work.  Reflecting on how it has mattered to us to ensure the voices of marginalized women are at the centre of all we do.  We each left the event feeling a sense of empowerment and renewed determination to continue gathering our strength, grounding our vision, to continue taking action and continuing to move forward.


BWSSFeminsmForReal Battered Women’s Support Services Team (l to r ) Jaclyn Sauer, Fran Smith, Samantha Kearney, Marjaneh Aghamohseni, and Athena Affan – Photo courtesy of Fernanda Selayzin D Souza

Battered Women’s Support Services had the privilege of being selected, by Jessica, as the recipient from book sales that evening.  We are so committed to the vision of the book we are in discussion with Canadian Centre of Policy Alternatives to have copies of Feminism FOR REAL for purchase in Vancouver.  If you wish to purchase the book please email us at endingviolence@bwss.org


The mainstream and academic feminists circles have yet to take notice of this important reflection on feminism.

Feminist Mothers with their sons

Mary&IssacFeminism Rosa&EstebanFeminism



On the left – Mary Childs, lawyer with Issac and on the right – Rosa Elena Arteaga BWSS Manager with Esteban







Photos courtesy of Fernanda Selayzin D Souza



A special moment we will never forget, a young one taking a look at Jessica Yee reciting “The Grand-Mother’s Spirit” – Photo courtesy of Fernanda Selayzin D Souza

Fernanda&Angela1The talented Fernanda Selayzin D Souza our photographer for the evening with Angela Marie MacDougall