RAISING OUR VOICES

Part 3 of the Call yourself a Feminist? series

Feminists, suffragettes and many protest groups before and since have recognised that if you want to be heard, you must raise your voice.

But raising our voices with uncontrolled anger or sadness, to whinge or to nag is alienating, irritating and ineffective – be it directed to our friends, children, spouses or governments. First we must honour the NEED to communicate, rather than swallow our voices. Secondly we must learn to express ourselves effectively, in a way that our message can be heard by those listening. Otherwise both speaker and message can be easily dismissed.

The gift of great movers on a global stage, with a powerful message is integrity and control and insistence, passionate insistence, and self knowledge and reflection: think the Dalai Lama, Nelson Mandela, Aung San Suu Kyi, Gandhi…

What is needed is that we find our voices, physically and emotionally. Men and women. Our “authentic” voices. Then we speak with integrity and passion on what matters deeply to us, to those we care about, those who need our voices, our communities, our world. Be this painting a picture, writing a blog, an article, a song, going on a protest, gathering a petition. No more will we be silenced. No more will we silence ourselves.

For me the blogosphere is a very exciting worldwide unleashing of voices, disparate voices, connecting, communicating, voicing what is closest to their hearts, without having to justify their thoughts to editors who ride the waves of the markets, whose hands are tied by advertisers. On the internet, we get to say what is important to us, what really matters.

To that end, tomorrow will be a round up of really exciting websites and blogs which raise their voices for the greater good. So get your thinking caps on and add them in the comments section tomorrow.

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