50.50

2017 in feminist protests: in pictures

Women around the world led protests in 2017 for our rights and against threats from everyday sexism to femicide.

Bérengère Sim
28 December 2017

Ni Una Menos (or “Not one [woman] less”) demonstrations in Argentina against machismo and femicides.

Ni Una Menos (or “Not one [woman] less”) demonstrations in Argentina against machismo and femicides. Photo: Gabby De Cicco.

In 2017, women all over the world led protests against threats to our rights from gender inequality and domestic violence, to everyday sexism and femicide.

Here are images – of huge, coordinated demonstrations, and small, local actions – from Germany to Argentina, Malaysia to Tunisia.


Women's March in Washington DC.

Women's March in Washington DC. Photo: Tracy Lee/Flickr. Creative Commons (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0). Some rights reserved.

In January, the largest coordinated protest in US history took place – organised by women. Five million women and men across the world, including 3.5 million in the US, joined the Women’s March the day after President Donald Trump’s inauguration.


Women's March in Berlin.

Women's March in Berlin. Photo: Sema Karaman/AWID.

Women's March protestors demonstrated against the misogyny and racism that had marked Trump's electoral campaign. In Berlin, one of several European cities to see demonstrations, women gathered in front of the Brandenburg Gate.


Women at an 8 March demonstration in Oakland, California.

Women at an 8 March demonstration in Oakland, California. Photo: Peg Hunter/Flickr. Creative Commons (CC BY-NC 2.0). Some rights reserved.

8 March is International Women's Day, marked annually by women’s demonstrations. It emerged from labour movements at the turn of the 20th century in North America and Europe, and is now recognised around the world.


Chouftouhonna festival.

Chouftouhonna festival. Photo: Narjes Chebbi.

Chouftouhonna is a unique feminist arts festival, launched in 2015 as a grassroots initiative in post-revolutionary Tunisia. The 2017 event, in September, challenged gender roles, patriarchy – and class privileges.


#MeToo protest against gender-based and sexual violence in Paris, October 2017.

#MeToo protest against gender-based and sexual violence in Paris, October 2017. Photo: Somer/ABACA/ABACA/PA Images. All rights reserved.

The #MeToo hashtag coined by US activist Tarana Burke in 1997 made a comeback in October amid sexual abuse allegations against Hollywood film producer Harvey Weinstein. Social media users shared solidarity and their own stories with this hashtag.


"We want to live!"

"We want to live!" Photo: Gabby De Cicco.

The Ni Una Menos (“Not one [woman] less”) feminist movement has spread across Latin America with demonstrations against machismo and violence against women.

In Argentina, where a femicide is believed to occur every 30 hours, on average, women held posters saying "they're killing us." On the cheek of one protester in Buenos Aires was painted: "Vivas nos queremos!” (“We want to live!”).

What can a world in crisis learn from grassroots movements?

For many communities, this is not the first crisis they’ve faced. The lockdown feels familiar to those who have years of experience living and organising in the face of scarce resources and state violence.

So it’s not surprising that grassroots and community activists mobilised quickly in response to COVID-19, from expanding mutual aid groups and launching creative campaigns to getting information out to women at risk of domestic violence.

What can the world learn from these movements to get us through this crisis – and help us rebuild a better world?

Join us on Thursday 2 July at 5pm UK time/12pm EDT for a live discussion on these urgent questions.

Hear from:

Mona Eltahawy Feminist author, commentator and disruptor of patriarchy. Her latest book ‘The Seven Necessary Sins For Women and Girls’ took her disruption worldwide.

Crystal Lameman Member of the Beaver Lake Cree Nation and campaigns against the exploitation of her people and of their land, holding the government of Canada accountable for violations of their treaty rights.

Elif Sarican Activist in the Kurdish Women's Movement, host and producer of Pomegranate Podcast.

Chair: Mary Fitzgerald Editor-in-chief, openDemocracy.

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