Activism of the Pen

Godess Bvukutwa
Posted July 25, 2014 from Zimbabwe

Women's rights activism comes in many forms and shapes. Some activists march in streets and demonstrate, some speak at public gatherings, some write academic, well researched papers on subject matters that relate to women, some advocate and fight for the rights of women by repealing certain legal instruments and introducing new laws that are more women friendly.

And then there are some are like me, who use the pen to fight for the emancipation and empowerment of fellow women. I write reflection pieces on the position and condition of women, meaning my pen becomes the voice of the many underserved and underprivileged women that I represent in my country. Here is one of my articles, http://thisisafrica.me/gender-equality-western-notion/ I am also a writer of literary fiction and I unapologetically create strong female characters just to deconstruct the literary images painted by most male authors of the woman either as a witch, prostitute, a shouting, screaming woman, or fitting the traditional motherly, wifely role. I have been awarded with the Zimbabwe Women Writers Norma Kitson Short Story Award in 2012 by the Premio Mondiale Poesia Nosside 2013 for my poem titled, 'Diary of a Little African Girl.'

However for activism of the pen to be effective, one needs an audience; an audience as wide as possible, and the Internet has served me well by giving me a wide audience than I could never have dreamed of. When my article, "Gender Equality is not a Western Notion" was first published on This is Africa website, I was excited by the number of times it was tweeted about and liked and shared on Facebook. But this wasn't to end there. I started to get people from all over the world asking me to write on their various platforms. My next article is to appear on Hysteria a radical feminist platform and yet another one is to be featured in the virtual International Museum of Women under the Imagining Equality banner. I have also used social media like Facebook, which is more accessible to people here in Zimbabwe, to write and start conversations on gender issues and although we may not always agree with some people, the important thing is that lines of dialogue would have been opened on such issues which are deemed contentious and such discussions reach hundreds of people on social media.

Lastly, in our organization's website, http://mambakwedzawomen.weebly.com I have started a blog, Women of Mambakwedza Blog, to use as media to constantly write about the issues facing rural women and girls that we work with. The blog complements our Facebook page, www.facebook.com/mambakwedzawomen. As said earlier, in activism of the pen, the goal is to reach out to as wide an audience as possible. And what better way to do this than the Internet?

@GodessRumbi

WWW: Women Weave the Web

Comments 5

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Shaheen S Dhanji
Jul 28, 2014
Jul 28, 2014

Godess Rumbi,

Long live your post ! This is very meaningful and I certainly appreciate your views manifested. Keep penning - a voice that shall reign in many hearts and mind !

erincriley
Jul 30, 2014
Jul 30, 2014

Hi Godess,

Thank you for writing your journal entry. You give so much empowerment and hope through your writings. Keep up the great work!

Godess Bvukutwa
Jul 31, 2014
Jul 31, 2014

Thanks Shaheen and Erin!

amymorros
Aug 05, 2014
Aug 05, 2014

So true! People used have to go through more traditional media to have their work read by others and many voices were not heard, especially women. Now, they have more control and are able to reach a wide audience through the Internet. I like your article on gender equality.

There is a lot going on in Washington, DC with the U.S. Africa Leaders Summit. Unfortunately, our media covers Africa very little and now seems obsessed with the Ebola outbreak.

Keep up the good work and thank you so much for your activism. I know you will continue to enjoy success.

Godess Bvukutwa
Aug 05, 2014
Aug 05, 2014

Thanks Amy!

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