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The following articles have appeared in 50.50's free monthly newsletter.

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Life with a dissident in China: searching for ‘horizontal freedom’

The role of women in house churches in China reminds us of both the social malleability of religion and the complexity of female agency.

South Africa: white fear, black anger and student protests

Student protests across South Africa have heralded a new generation of political activists. ‘Born free’ into democracy, they are frustrated at the slow pace of transformation in higher education.

Mitrovica’s symbol: reconciliation amidst inevitability, history, and violence in Kosovo

Mitrovica’s bridge as ‘symbol’ helps obscure the forces of elite manipulation and institutions of power in constructing Balkan nationalisms, and falsely presents inter-communal tensions in Kosovo as inevitable. 

The promise of gender parity: Turkey’s People’s Democratic Party (HDP)

The Turkish HDP's egalitarian gender ideology played a key role in the election of a record number of women to parliament in June's election. Can these gains be sustained in the political turmoil ahead? 

Men and Lads: Playboy nods to the cultural revolution

Lad mag circulations have been diving and several have closed. The debate about sexual objectification of women isn’t just a joust between men and women, it is an argument between men.

Has Ukraine's 'Revolution of Dignity' left women behind?

Ukraine’s Euromaidan revolution called for dignity and justice, but almost two years later gender equality is not a priority on the Ukrainian political agenda – not even for female lawmakers.

Preventing violent extremism: a noose that is both too tight and too loose

The British government's programme to counter violent extremism hands religious fundamentalists the gift of a narrative of victimhood, narrowing the political space for secular feminists and others to challenge fundamentalism.

Kosovo's 'real men'

The Be a Man project by the Kosovan NGO Peer Educators Network uses workshops and art to provide young Kosovans with an alternative understanding of masculinity.

Fierce Attachments: feminist memoir and female relationships

The re-issue of Vivian Gornick’s memoir ‘Fierce Attachments’ highlights the rich tradition in feminist writing of taking the complexities of female relationships seriously.

Spain's traditional parties: past their sell by date?

This week's TV debate between the young leaders of the new parties made clear that a fresh political scenario is being thrashed out between the left and the right, the past and the future.

Ireland: policing domestic violence in times of austerity

The difficulties presented by the under-resourced Gardaí in policing domestic violence, and the resulting lamentable status of domestic violence policies in Ireland were highlighted by last week's tragedy. 

Defending ourselves: defining the rights of girls

Exploited in the media, sanctioned by the state, and controlled by religious fundamentalism, decisions about the bodies of young women and girls seem to be everyone's business but their own.

Lifting the ban on women’s shelters in Iraq: promoting change in conflict

There is a crisis-level need for shelter in Iraq, so why does the Iraqi government maintain a policy that stymies critically needed temporary housing and threatens the safety of those willing to provide it?

On the frontline: women building peace

Gender is a matter of international peace and security. The anniversary of SCR 1325 provides a platform to reclaim the actions and power of women to shape global peace and security in new ways.

Implementing Resolution 1325: the role of National Action Plans

Much has been gained by the women who secured SCR 1325. Seven resolutions on, these resolutions and their intent now sit firmly within global policy on peace and security.

Missed opportunities: gender and the UN's peacebuilding reports

The Open Debate this week on the 15th anniversary of SCR 1325 on Women, Peace and Security is the UN's chance to answer the key question: why has implementation been so half-hearted? 

Girls speaking truth to power at the UN: the global 2030 Agenda

"Invest in adolescents. We’re not only the future, we’re the present, and we deserve to be happy."  Twelve year old Stephanie  Mendez Asturias, from Guatemala, speaking at the UN ahead of International Day of the Girl Child.

Refugee or economic migrant? Join the dots Theresa May

The compartmentalisation of individuals into the categories of economic migrants or refugees obscures the fundamental ways in which these two groups are intimately related through remittance economies. 

The hopes of the pro-Kurdish HDP in Turkey in spite of turmoil and violence

Is Turkey poised on the brink of the violent conflict of the 90s? Or does the entry of the pro-Kurdish People's Democratic Party (HDP) into Parliament offer shoots of hope for an alternative path?

Documenting women’s lives: mothers' names on marriage certificates

In England and Wales in the twenty-first century we continue to perpetuate a system that writes women out of our collective history, and we are all poorer for it.

More Frontex is not the answer to the refugee crisis

Rather than investing millions more in fences, patrols, and an EU Border Guard, we need the courage to accept that the policies of exclusion have failed.

Energy democracy: building a solar dream in a tar sands nightmare

Refusing to be victims in this game of fossil fuel roulette, communities like Little Buffalo in Alberta are leading the way towards energy independence. They are turning their gaze to the sun.

"Men get more freedom": women and memoir writing

Juliet Jacques spoke to Dawn Foster about her new book, Trans: A Memoir, and the struggles of gender typecasting in the media

Why doesn’t patriarchy die?

The prevailing common sense that things can only get better, that men and women are equal – virtually – is confronted by the vigour of patriarchal divisions of labour and sexism in popular culture. 

Faultlines, refugees, and the law

The refugee crisis in Europe has challenged many accepted truths, and shown that the solution lies in applying international human rights law to override political manoeuvring.

Mapping women's resistance to social and ecological degradation

Women coming together to cross pollinate ideas and build understanding about differing burdens, responsibilities, and solutions is an essential part of worldwide efforts to restore the health of the planet.

The UN: are development and peace empty words?

As governments adopt the UN's 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, their roles in producing and selling weapons that undermine development, peace and security are coming under scrutiny.

Adam and Eve still leading Religious Studies in Spain

As the autumn political agenda gets off the ground in Spain with this weekend's vote on Catalunyan independence and the forthcoming General Election, will the antiquated education system get a look in?

Corbyn and housing justice in Britain

The election of the new Labour leader is a time for guarded hope but not for a change of tactics. Local campaigns must unite in a national movement.

Freedom to speak? No-go areas and unsafe spaces

At the heart of the debate on free speech and censorship are contested understandings of where power resides. Where should the line be drawn?

The overlooked history of women against feminism

Anti-feminists do not hold an obvious place within feminist history, but the tradition dates back to the late-18th century.

Israel: refugees not welcome

While other countries in the region are hosting millions of refugees fleeing Syria, Israel is hosting none and is forcing out the several thousands of African asylum seekers already in the country.

The refugee crisis: demilitarising masculinities

Photos emerging from the borders of Europe weave a new narrative around what it means to be vulnerable, to be a man, to say no to war and to be a refugee.

Philosophies of migration

Migration raises more fundamental questions than 'should these people be here': it probes into the very essence of what it means to be human, as well as how we define our communities.

Jeremy Corbyn and women: a matter of policy not appointment

Media responses have pointed to the lack of women in the new shadow cabinet, but the policy response to austerity will have more impact on women's lives in the UK.

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