Saturday, November 12th 2016
9:00am - Doors Open
The Founder and Director of The Museum of Woman, Ava Park, will deliver the opening and closing remarks to our Conference, sharing insights on the relationships among women, men, animals and Mother Earth garnered over thirty years of research, activism and leadership. In addition to being the spark for the concept of a feminist museum, a space dedicated to educating the public about the hidden history of Woman as leader of humanity since the Paleolithic Era, Ava is also the Founder and Board Member of Orange County People for Animals, Orange County’s largest animal rights group, and Founder and Presiding Priestess of The Goddess Temple of Orange County, a spiritual organization for the “empowerment of women leading the world to goodness.” ©
10:00am - 10:45am
Roots and Blossoms of Ecofeminism
by Charlotte Cressey
Ecofeminism is a philosophy and action which seeks to understand the root cause of violence, oppression, and destruction in the world as well as provide solutions. This presentation will illuminate the ways women, nature, and animals are simultaneously linked and degraded in the language, psyche, and behavior of modern patriarchal humanity. We will explore the myriad manifestations of this dominator paradigm and how it limits us all as individuals. Ecofeminism offers solutions of personal, political, and collective empowerment to address the urgent needs of modern humanity, the billions of animals humans use-abuse, and nature. The moment is ripe with potential. Ecofeminism provides us insights and beautiful blossoms that support the full flourishing of all life.
10:45am – 11:30am
by Jeannette Kiel
As an ecofeminist-activist artist, I consider one’s art and activism as integral to one another. Not only does one’s work come from a deep place, but it has the possibility to inspire others to go deeper and help create positive ecosocial change. In this presentation I first discuss what ecofeminist-activist-art is and why it is so vital to the ecofeminist movement. I then present the stories and the work of six women spiritual-ecofeminist-activist-artists, whose work address issues of climate change and interconnections of animals and nature within their activist art work. These stories were obtained through interviews I completed as a part of my doctoral research. The presentation of these stories are intended to provide one with examples of ways women are doing creative ecofeminist activism and to inspire others to become active agents of change.
11:30am – 12:30pm
The Frightful Goddess: Birds, Snakes and Witches
by Miriam Robbins Dexter
In the European Neolithic and Bronze ages, from around 6000 BCE until around 3000 BCE, female figurines with bird and snake attributes proliferated. Excavated female figurines from these millennia outnumber male figurines about 10 to 1. Bird and snake iconography imbued historical Classical-Age cultures as well, but in the early historic age, there was a change in the valuation of these female figures.
This presentation traces the bird and snake iconography from prehistory through some early historic cultures, demonstrating the gradual metamorphosis of some avian-viperine “goddess”-figures into monsters and witches. Those female figures who supported life and the values of their patriarchal cultures continued to be worshipped as beneficent goddesses. By the time of the Greco-Roman Classical age, and subsequent ages, life and death in Europe became polarities instead of the great round of birth, death, and regeneration, and because of a fear of death, many former goddesses who represented death lost their veneration and were transformed into witches and monsters. Through this re-visioning of the bird and snake goddesses, both beneficent and monstrous, I hope to re-empower our images of the ancient goddesses as well as re-empowering prehistoric visions of wholeness.
12:30 – 1:30pm – Lunch
* Miriam Robbins Dexter and Starr Goode will be signing their book, "Foremothers of the Women's Spirituality Movement: Elders and Visionaries" during the lunch hour
1:30 – 2:15pm
Censored Landscapes: An Ecofeminist Perspective
by Isabella La Rocca
A presentation of photographs intended to inspire ideas and discussion regarding ecofeminist and social justice issues.
A Perspective from Space: Why it’s More Important than Ever to Understand Our Home
By Karen Yuen
Despite the conflicting and confusing messages that we may hear or read, climate change is an integral and natural part of our dynamic and amazing planet. From the unique vantage point of Space, we have been quietly and steadily collecting data for decades. This data is like the vital signs of Earth, and we have been monitoring the overall health of the planet. In recent times, we have seen and felt disturbing trends in the Earth’s health, but what is exactly going on? We will talk about some of these vital signs, what we are seeing and what would be creating these changes. Furthermore, as inhabitants and stewards of this planet, we play an active role in these changes, and we cannot rely on past trends as an indicator of what may or may not happen. It is important to know what the facts are and what to be mindful of when information is presented publicly. Knowledge is power and empowering women to understand climate change through science may just change our world.
3:15 – 3: 25pm – Break
3:25pm – 4:20pm
The Burning Truth: The Surprise Cause of Global Warming and What We Can Do About It
by Jaya Bhumitra
Climate change, pollution, resource depletion, and biodiversity loss are alarming environmental issues with stark repercussions for societies worldwide. While many governments, the media, and even eco-nonprofits place the majority of the blame on the transportation sector, we are being distracted from the primary culprit: industrialized animal agriculture. In this discussion, we’ll review the latest scientific literature connecting the meat and dairy industries to the globe’s rising temperatures and other environmental concerns, examine the business interests that deter regulatory agencies from intervening, and identify how we can, as individuals, halt the damage using the power of consumer choice.
4:20pm – 5:05pm
Women's Resistance to Climate Change
Indigenous Peoples, particularly women and children are the most impacted by the climate crisis and are also in the lead of the global resistance against it. Sharon Lungo, of the Ruckus Society, discusses Indigenous women's initiatives locally and internationally to combat the climate change and its root causes. She will also discuss women's role and leadership in non-violent direct action.
5:05pm – 5:50pm
Combating Climate Change: Ecofeminist Solutions and Experiences from India
This presentation focuses on solutions to climate change developed and implemented in India by Vandana Shiva and the Navdanya movement for Earth democracy. The Navdanya ecofeminist movement has promoted democracy and sovereignty in acquiring and preservation of knowledge, scientific research on biodiversity, agro-ecology and climate change. The Navdanya members highlight the contribution of diverse species to agricultural production and food security.
Navdanya's work on climate change demonstrates the importance of biodiversity of plants and animals, and the role of sustainable organic agriculture that assume seed preservation and seed sovereignty. They mitigate climate change, contribute to adaptation and restoration of natural environments, climate and ecological justice.
While these ecofeminist experiences and indigenous practices have originated in India, their impact is far reaching. Their work is especially recognized in the Himalayan region where a participatory process was designed for Himalayan communities to engage in crafting solutions to climate change. The Himalayan people also found opportunities to address issues of climate justice, adaptation, and disaster preparedness.
Ecofeminists in the U. S. have a lot to learn from this movement in order to consider best practices and resist U. S. government’s devaluing attitude towards so called Global South— where the impacts of climate change have been felt more than in any other inhabited part of the world.
5:50pm – 6:00pm
Ava Park Closing Ceremony and Remarks
6:00 - 6:30pm
Social in the Foyer
6:30pm – End of Day