Making Spaces: is a research project exploring feminist responses and survival strategies in the Covid-19 pandemic
In ‘Making Spaces’ (started May 2020 ) we use creativity, arts activism and collaboration to tell our stories about life during the COVID-19 pandemic. Research from around the world has shown that women – especially women of colour, women in poverty, women with caring responsibilities and women working as key workers – are disproportionately affected by this pandemic and the lockdowns it has brought about.
We are 10 feminists living in the North of England using our writing, art, poetry, recipes and other creative methods to explore four key questions about ourselves and some of the women† we know in different places across the globe:
1. How do we experience life in spaces confined by Covid-19?
2. What are the precarities – things that make life harder – for us during the pandemic?
3. What strategies and resources do we use for survival/coping during the Covid-19 pandemic? How are these being shared? How can they be better shared? What resources are needed to cope?
4. What do we all want the world, and our spaces, to become when we emerge from the pandemic?
In exploring these questions, we aim to collaborativelyand individually extend knowledge of women’s lives, strategies, resilience and aspirations during a pandemic. There is much to be learned from our stories and strategies for coping and survival and much remains to be done to identify how societies need to change to better provide resources and support to women, and understand their lives, in crises.
† We use the term ‘women’ to refer to those who identify as women, trans or non-binary.
The stranger at home by Kani Kamil
During the lockdown, I came across many posts, jokes and comics on social media. I realised that women have become the subject of sniggers and ridicule during the pandemic, whilst this pandemic has also been used as another method to discriminate and abuse women.
A Making Spaces workshop: The Sisterhood Salon
The Sisterhood Salon hosted a writing workshop in collaboration with Feminist Spaces (UK) and Yalla Feminists (US & Lebanon). This was specifically for feminists in lockdown. We welcomed women and non-binary individuals to a guided poetry session exploring pandemic.