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Veteran women’s rights campaigner in Cardiff

Campaigner calls for an end to capitalism to bring about equality for women


Selma James, with Global Women’s Strike, is looking for valuing women’s work

Despite the growing number of campaigns against sexual harassment women still face a raft of inequalities that need to be addressed, according to veteran women’s rights campaigner.

Selma James was speaking to an audience at the Trinity centre last night and pushed them to end discrimination against women on the labour market.

“Women must organise themselves respecting the work they have done and they continue to do. They ask help and support,” said Selma James.

The campaigner, born in Brooklyn in 1930, stood against gender and racial inequalities for several years, by launching campaigns and spreading it across the world.

Selma James, talking about how women should work together to improve the society they wish for their children.

Selma James, who campaigned for International wages for housework in 1972, believes that capitalism relies on the unsalaried domestic work that women do.

She has criticized capitalism for focusing on profit over people .Her campaign used Marxist frameworks to show that labour practices against women are exploitative.

She argues that how women spend their lives has no interest for them. Children are only seen as future workers and soldiers who are going to serve capitalist’s interests. “That what capitalism is. But we want a society of careers, all of us women, men, children, older, younger, every race, every religion, everywhere. We want to build a society for our children,” she said

“Caring civilized women and when the men don’t do it, they are not exactly civilized, in the sense that they do not live for others.”

However, Selma James said that women are living “in a world with a lot of promises, especially since there is a great movement growing, which has been called out by Jeremy Corbyn and John Mcdonnell.”

Her movement Global Women’s strike, raised issues among women on different topics including the labour market. The acknowledgement of rape as a crime has been one of her fights. The speaker said, “rape was a very particular form of de-exploitation and discipline of women before we were able to make it a crime. But it has always been a crime.”

“The movement is our way of painting the world, there is no great leader who is going to save us.”

“What you believe is what you do, you can give me a wonderful phrase but you do nothing,” said the latter.

Informal talk after the conference