(Turkey, 1986) completed her high-school education at Izmir American Collegiate Institute, including a year as an exchange student in Rochester, New York. After completing her BA in psychology at Yeditepe University in Istanbul, she worked as a psychologist for five years. From 2013 to 2014 she published articles in the Turkish newspaper Radikal on topics such as feminism, social movements and minority rights. In 2015, she founded Turkey's first internet platform to combat sexism, erktolia. She left the organization in 2017. In the meantime, she has been involved with various activist projects in Turkey and France and organized crowdfunding campaigns. Since 2014, Gürcü has written about feminism on Turkey's first independent internet journal, T24. In March 2019, she published her first nonfiction book: It's No Longer Between Us. The book emphasizes that for women, the personal must become political. She has lived in Paris since 2013, where she works in the internet technologies industry.(WN 2021)
Archive available for: Dilâra Gürcü
Watch here the keynote speech Love Politics by the German writer, journalist and cultural scientist Nithu Sanyal.
It's up to us. This is what women in Poland and Turkey are demanding in their protests for gender equality and for better protection against violence. The ruling right-wing nationalist politicians in their countries want to withdraw from the so-called Istanbul Convention. This human rights convention of the Council of Europe is the world's first binding instrument to prevent and tackle violence against women. Some governments doubt the "moral implications" of this important milestone and even believe that it could be "harmful" to their societies.
In The Female Convention, we analyzed the demonstrations and gave a voice to authors. In short: we employed literature to make the convention tangible and to breathe new life into it. This program featuring strong women and political current affairs was hosted by journalist Nicole le Fever and has been made by programme maker and writer Meltem Halaceli. Those interested could take part actively by joining the chat session, hosted by theatre maker and stand-up philosopher Laura van Dolron.
Nicole le Fever and Turkish writer, psychologist and feminist Dilâra Gürcü zoomed in on the protests in Turkey, but also on the means of protest and the role of writers and artists in this matter. Gürcü provided an impressive testimony of her life, which has changed dramatically since 2013.
The Hungarian writer and literary critic Zsófia Bán told us how she claims women's rights with the sharpness and imagination of language.
Egyptian-American journalist, writer and feminist Mona Eltahawy made it crystal clear by means of a video message that the convention does not do sufficient justice to refugees and women without residence permits, or who depend on their partners for their residence status.
We also spoke to Kaouthar Darmoni, CEO of Atria, Institute on gender equality and women's history in Amsterdam, and to actor and writer Nazmiye Oral about the role they can and want to play in this debate. How do they voice their activism and feminism from their positions?
Next, we zoomed out to a "politics of love" with the German writer, journalist and cultural scientist Mithu Sanyal. Her books Vulva (2009) and Rape: From Lucretia to #MeToo (2019) explore how our society has dealt with sexual violence for centuries, and what that says about our beliefs on sex, sexuality and gender. Her video-essay is an inspiring and confrontational report by a driven researcher about her investigation into love as a political force.
Watch here the video-essay Love Politics by Mithu Sanyal.
Read here the contribution by Mithu Sanyal written for this programme on request of the Winternachten international literature festival The Hague.
(Find the Dutch-language version here/Lees hier de Nederlandstalige versie)
Read and watch on here:
Laura van Dolron
website: FEMINIST GIANT newsletter
Video: Mona Eltahawys video-essays, among which FEMINIST GIANT.