Challenges of Change: Religion, Secularism, & Rights

Women's Learning Partnership (WLP) presents

Challenges of Change:
Religion, Secularism & Rights

in cooperation with Cultural Conversations of the Paul H. Nitze School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS), Johns Hopkins University

September 21, 2010 | 9:30 am – 5:30 pm
Kenney Auditorium, SAIS, Johns Hopkins University
1740 Massachusetts Ave NW, Washington DC

Symposium Proceedings

Photos on Flickr | Videos on YouTube

Speakers | Draft Program (pdf) | Flyer (pdf) | Directions

Seats are limited. Register online.

In a world plagued by ethnic and religious clashes, where some strive to impose their beliefs and lifestyles on all, women leaders from Africa, the Americas, Asia, and the Middle East will speak to the challenges of accommodating diversity while striving for human rights.

Speakers will discuss the impact of a decade of "clash of civilizations" rhetoric on the intellectual as well as pragmatic work of those who struggle for gender justice and seek to transform cultures of violence into cultures of peace. They discuss the interrelation between violence against women in the home and violence in the community, nation, and internationally. They will share strategies for mobilizing communities to bring about non-violent, positive change.

Where, after all, do universal rights begin? In small places, close to home—so close and so small that they cannot be seen on any maps of the world....Without concerned citizen action to uphold them close to home, we shall look in vain for progress in the larger world.
- Eleanor Roosevelt

Human rights is a universal standard. It is a component of every religion and every civilization.
- Shirin Ebadi

Peace is not merely a distant goal that we seek, but a means by which we arrive at that goal.
- Martin Luther King, Jr.

Registration
Registration: $15 (includes light lunch, coffee and refreshments)
Students: Free (ID required, optional lunch $10)
Seats are limited. Register online.

Speakers:

  • Mahboubeh Abbasgholizadeh (Iran), Former Editor-in-Chief, Farzaneh Women’s Studies Journal
  • Mahnaz Afkhami (Iran/USA), Founder and President, Women’s Learning Partnership
  • Zainah Anwar (Malaysia), Founder, Sisters In Islam
  • Karima Bennoune (Algeria/USA), Professor of Law, Rutgers University
  • Marian Wright Edelman (USA), Founder and President, Children’s Defense Fund
  • Yakin Ertürk (Turkey), former United Nations Special Rapporteur on Violence Against Women
  • Anne Gahongayire (Rwanda), Secretary General, Supreme Court of Rwanda
  • Pregs Govender (South Africa), Deputy Chairperson, South Africa Human Rights Commission
  • Asma Khader (Jordan), Secretary General, Jordanian National Commission for Women
  • Azar Nafisi (Iran/USA), Executive Director, Cultural Conversations, SAIS, Johns Hopkins University
  • Thoraya Ahmed Obaid (Saudi Arabia), Executive Director, United Nations Population Fund
  • Jacqueline Pitanguy (Brazil), Co-Founder and Director, Cidadania, Estudo, Pesquisa, Informação e Ação (Cepia)
  • Eleanor Smeal (USA), Founder and President, Feminist Majority Foundation

Chairs:

  • LaShawn Jefferson (USA), Women's Human Rights Program Officer, Ford Foundation
  • Frances Kissling (USA), Visiting Scholar, Center for Bioethics, University of Pennsylvania
  • Carolyn Long (USA), Director of Global Partnerships, InterAction
  • Regan Ralph (USA), Executive Director, The Fund for Global Human Rights

For more information: +1-301-654-2774 | wlp@learningpartnership.org | www.learningpartnership.org

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Related Stories
November 11, 2010 | Human Rights, religion, eNews 27, 2010 Events
Challenges of Change: Religion, Secularism & Rights Panel 1: Chaired by Frances Kissling, Speakers Thoraya Obaid and Yakin Ertürk When a society is structured only according to shared values, the result is social continuity and a culture of domination by one group over another, said Yakin Ertürk, former United Nations Special Rapporteur on Violence Against Women. When values are in competition – as between parents and children, citizens and the state, men and women, and the state versus the international community – they create openings for change and a culture of protest. "The human rights framework provides tools for the women's movement that we have not fully utilized," she said.
November 11, 2010 | Human Rights, religion, eNews 27, 2010 Events
Challenges of Change: Religion, Secularism & Rights Panel 3: Chaired by Regan Ralph, Speakers Jacqueline Pitanguy, Asma Khader, and Eleanor Smeal Fighting for women’s human rights is fighting to save the planet and humanity itself, said Eleanor Smeal, founder and president of the Feminist Majority Foundation and former president of the National Organization for Women. Moneyed interests are the real opposition to women’s rights, “because if you give full rights to half the population you have to pay them better.”
November 11, 2010 | Human Rights, religion, eNews 27, 2010 Events
Challenges of Change: Religion, Secularism & Rights Panel 4: Chaired by Carolyn Long, Speakers Pregs Govender (video), Marian Wright Edelman, and Mahnaz Afkhami
November 11, 2010 | eNews 27, 2010 Events
Challenges of Change: Religion, Secularism & Rights Panel 1: Chaired by Frances Kissling, Speakers Thoraya Obaid and Yakin Ertürk When a society is structured only according to shared values, the result is social continuity and a culture of domination by one group over another, said Yakin Ertürk, former United Nations Special Rapporteur on Violence Against Women. When values are in competition – as between parents and children, citizens and the state, men and women, and the state versus the international community – they create openings for change and a culture of protest. "The human rights framework provides tools for the women's movement that we have not fully utilized," she said.
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