Monday, March 06, 2006

Thanks to sima's latest post, I now know the details of at least two events happening in Tehran in commemoration of International women's day. From 10-12 on Wednesday, there will be a film screening and roundtable discussion at the University of Tehran on the issue of violence against women. From 4-5 later that day, there will be a general gathering at a public park in tehran (park-e daneshjoo).

Right-wingish U.S. groups, newspapers, blogs, pundits, etc. will most likely try their best to co-opt the messages of these gatherings towards an agenda that pushes war and violence against the people of Iran. Expect the heavy circulation of photos from these events, and expect a lot of patronizing, patriarchical talk from a bunch of people who claim to want to free Iranian women from the claws of Iranian patriarchy.

Left-wingish U.S. groups, newspapers, blogs, pundits, etc. will most likely ignore these events because their message is not easily distilled into the hackneyed slogans that have been recycled for at least the last three decades. Don't expect to hear any of the women involved in these events on your local community radio, and don't expect to see them as international invitees to the demonstrations organized by supposedly progressive NGOs.

As for iranians currently or permanently abroad, i guess we too have a long way to go in learning how to support such gatherings without meddling in and/or manipulating their messages.