Category Archives: activism

‘I shall try to do what is right’

Just a little post prompted by a quote: Cry, the Beloved Country is one of my favourite and most formative books. I read this quote from it today at the beginning of a collection of photographs and stories, Displaced Reflections, by Oddny Gumaer, cofounder of Partners Relief & Development. You can see more on this book here, her second […]

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Two Ideas for Post-Election Action

On Saturday night (or afternoon, Thai time), the New Zealand general election results rolled in, faster than ever before, and they led to the first outright majority government in the twenty years we’ve had MMP, our proportional representational voting system. And it’s the centre-right National government who has been voted in for a third term with […]

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On Being a Social Entrepreneur and a Parent (at the same time) [Guest]

Jess Berentson-Shaw lives in on the side of a windswept Wellington hill. Jess has two kids, is a part time researcher and scientist, and runs (and blogs about) her social enterprise called muka kids (mukakids.com). Muka kids is her plan to bring about a sustainability revolution in the world of kids’ clothing production. She has […]

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My Feminist Parenting Humiliation

Oh, the shame! I love the days when my 2.5 year old son gets mistaken for a girl (Yus! No arbitrary gendered fashion advice for us, thanks!), when he plays with a tea-set, or when he says his favourite colour is pink (just the once, and I’ve seen no actual evidence of this, but it’s […]

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Ten Books, Four Words Each: Most Influential

The latest booklovers’ chain-letter going around Facebook seems to be a challenge to list (without too much agonising) your ten most ‘influential’ books. Heavens. To stay in the spirit of the challenge I’ve tried to write this in one sitting, presumably missing a lot of worthy contenders, but hopefully capturing some kind of truth. And […]

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Don’t Get Raped: Wear Running Shoes

It’s not that this ‘health and safety’ advice from Wellington’s Massey University isn’t sensible, it’s just that it is absolutely insane that we live in a world where the solution to rape is female university students being advised to carry a whistle and wear running shoes. University spokesman James Gardiner said … “If students don’t wish […]

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Muka Kids: Changing the World by Changing How We Buy Children’s Clothes

A warm welcome to a special guest!   Jess Berentson-Shaw lives in on the side of a windswept Wellington hill. Jess has two kids, is a part time researcher and scientist, and runs (and blogs about) her social enterprise called muka kids. Muka kids is her plan to bring about a sustainability revolution in the […]

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Women in Ministry: The Church’s Missing Workforce

At the moment in my corner of the church world (I’m a Kiwi Baptist), the number of our 250-odd churches in New Zealand led by a woman (as the sole or senior pastor) is in single figures. Low single figures. It seems likely that by the end of the year there will be only two such churches […]

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Everyday Misogyny: What Air New Zealand Doesn’t Understand

The story starts here, if you want to read the three posts in order. Here’s the thing: we’re not saying no one should ever wear a bikini, nor that my toddler should never see anyone in one. We’re saying that using women wearing bikinis and prancing (I checked the dictionary definition to be sure that was […]

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