Meet Feminist Dialogue!
Feminist Dialogue is one of my favorite feminist organizations ever! They provide me the feminist philosophy class I never had in their feminist salon a la brunch 'The Hive'. The Hive is an extraordinary event full of warm baked goods and respectful discourse on feminist topics and thoughts. I feel so thankful to have this feminist afternoon getaway in my life I just had to share this amazing organization with all of you! Check out our exclusive interview with Feminist Dialogue and if you live in NYC or DC you HAVE to go to one of their events. You will not be sorry, I bet my beaver on it!
Feminist Dialogue is such an awesome feminist community. How did it come into existence?
Feminist Dialogue (FD) was built on the backbone of Jillian Foster's, our founder, three great passions — feminism, tweeting, and brunching. Our feminist salon a la brunch series, The Hive (formerly Bitches Who Brunch), began as causal brunches in Jillian's home. Simultaneously our Twitter presence expanded. In 2014, our team joined forces to formalize the organization and produce even more events, including monthly Hive brunches, forthcoming panels, workshops, feminist-speed-chats, and in 2015, a fancy feminist conference called Feminism in New York City.
What was Jillian's brainchild is now a movement powered by the tireless energies of the entire FD team. Truly a collaborative process, our organization has grown out of our mutual passion for a more diverse, supportive, and inclusive feminism; a movement that inspires the world to move ideals into actions. We understand that diversity of thought, experience, and voice are necessary to progress.
The Hive is one of my favorite events in the city, I always leave feeling so amazing. Can you tell us what your secret is to hosting an awesome event with open dialogue?
One part good people, two parts energizing topics and discussions, and one part delicious food. We build our events on the belief that one need not prepare for brunch; rather, each person is already the expert on their life and encouraged to share their opinions, feelings, thoughts, and experiences.
The real secret is the IRL (in real life) human connection that our events curate. Sharing with, learning from, and building together is how Feminist Dialogue has grown into the organization it is today. The Hive owes its success to this model and our basic need for human connection.
You have also had so many cool topics and themes for The Hive- can you tell us about an event or one story that was really moving or inspiring at one of your brunches?
I (Jillian) often leave The Hive energized to start a feminist revolution. It's really the stories of others' experiences that inspire my learning and activism. Probably the most difficult yet transformative discussions have occurred during our annual rape culture conversation. Rape culture elicits strong emotions and with those emotions comes intimacy. What is a safe space at The Hive turns into a sacred space as we share stories of pain, survival, and triumph.
On a lighter note, I always leave The Hive ready to take on the world after we discuss professional development, or what I call “protips.” The professional world was largely built by and for men, particularly white men. Anyone that does not fit that mold is left to navigate what feels like an incredibly opaque system of privilege and conditional access. Sharing protips is how I've learned to overcome challenges, understand the mysterious system of nepotism, and move toward my goals with guilt-free ambition.
Feminist Dialogue appears to be growing before our eyes. Can you tell us what some of your plans are for future meetups or events?
We just launched in Washington, DC with The Hive DC brunch series produced by Claire Gould. In 2015, we'll be launching a big, huge, exciting, and fancy-yet-accessible Feminism in New York City conference. We're also exploring ideas around live storytelling events, workshops, panel discussions, and feminist-speed-chats (think speed dating but better). Lots of great ideas in the works and most depend on our capacity as we move toward crowdfunding.
Any additional plugs or social media links you want our readers to know about?
Please join us at The Hive if you're in NY or DC, info here: http://www.eventbrite.com/o/feminist-dialogue-4898860649 Join our mailing list to follow the growth of Feminist Dialogue http://www.feministdialogue.org Tell us what you think on Twitter at @feministdialog and in the FD Facebook group https://www.facebook.com/groups/feministdialog/
Listen to our interview with Feminist Dialogue founder Jillian Foster on BeaverTalk here!