I summon my seventies sisters.
The ones who wreaked havoc on government stairwells,
who descended upon Wall Street with broomsticks in hand and hexed those capitalist bastards.
Mothers of the millennials who waged war on a capitalist patriarchy,
dressed in garments black,
donning pointy hats shouting
“The revolution is where it’s at!”
The ones who rejoiced with chalices overflowing with menstruation blood,
and perished underwear in flames of fury.
They echoed the voices of our ancestors,
persecuted for their gender-
publicly shamed and burned at the stake for being empowered,
for having knowledge,
for becoming a threat…
But what have we really learned since these events?
Teenagers girls are groomed to perform a certain strand of sexuality online.
A brand which denies them any pleasure, but markets them as commodities.
Easily disposable in a world of quick comment warfare and the helter skelter of ‘likes’ deciding your worth.
Boys are taught to perform a harmful shade of masculinity.
One which adds a violence to their encounters,
promotes aggression and oppression of their counterparts.
This lesson from youth tarnishes identity forever.
Everyone’s on the brink of depression, as they have lost all sense of who they are…
Who they truly are.
Instead of this circus of performance we need a radical intervention.
We need a séance to call upon the voices of our sisters.
Our seventies sisters from above who will guide us beyond belief.
These are the women who will inspire us to carry on that dynasty
What happened to the collective?
A coven of connection as we made magic happen and obliterated phallocentrism.
Descendants of abolitionists, they never feared to call out injustices.
What happened to the bold statements of the outcasts?
Those statements of rejection,
Ownership of our ‘otherness’ as we expose the witch trials that still haunt us and celebrate our Salem sisters-
as we reclaim ourselves as NASTY WOMEN.
Savagely ravaging the relics of our past,
as we watch the efforts of our ancestors deteriorate into the dark.
What happened to the men who stood alongside us shouting for an era of change?
We need our brothers to fight in arms with us,
the move to equality must reject the shackles of binary.
All self-identifying women are welcome to this party,
we are a coven of inclusivity, and together we will combat the patriarchy.
Where has the sisterhood gone?
It’s right here in this room.
Shannon Mulvey is a performer and workshop facilitator. Alongside her collaborators, she formed the feminist performance collective Sisters of Eden.
After the success of their first show Volume I: Blood, Shannon became interested in notions of radical collectivism for self-identifying women. With a zealous passion for this area of research, she is now undertaking a research degree into feminist collaborative performance practice in relation to activism.
Her practice began to gravitate to spoken word due to her obsession with the DIY aesthetic adopted by third wave feminists, particularly in the Riot Grrrl movement.
The attraction towards creating her owns texts, was rooted in the allure of emancipation from authoritarian organisations in the arts and a sense of liberation and power to determine your own success.
The poem Where has the Sisterhood Gone? is a reflection upon our generations journey through cyber activism and the prospect of isolation that this form of cyber community presents. Live, communal based activism and collective actions are beginning to have a revival, and it is where the next wave of feminism is finding its foundations.
To follow Shannon’s career click on this FB link