On Thursday and Friday night (Nov 24th-25th) the Insomnia collective conducted a series of actions across Paris, France to highlight patriarchal murders.
Male violence is the leading cause of death for women aged 16 to 44 worldwide. Acts of violence against women are very diverse in nature, ranging from verbal harassment and other forms of psychological abuse to daily physical or sexual violence. At the far end of this continuum of violence is its most extreme form: femicide, that is to say, the murder of a woman because she is a woman.
In France, a woman is killed by her partner or ex every two-and-a- half days on average. They are called Lea G, Fabienne S, Maryvonne G. They were 18, 56, 73 years old. Like them, 100 women were killed this year by a spouse, former spouse or companion.
On November 24th Insomnia conducted a symbolic action putting 100 posters in bus shelter advertising spaces along the main boulevards of Paris. Each displayed the identity of a woman killed by a companion, a husband, a brother, a father … They rendered a name, an identity, put the word “femicide” into the murder of which they were victims.
With this massive display of action, INSOMNIA has two claims:
- Because combating femicide must begin with the name, we are campaigning for the recognition of femicide in France and its inclusion in the Criminal Code, as is already the case in Italy, Spain and seven Latin American countries. Feminicides are neither general crimes nor simply a private business. We support the bill “Equality and Citizenship,” currently in new reading in the National Assembly, which creates an aggravating circumstance for murders committed because of the victim’s gender. We ask that the law, once entered into force, be truly enforced by the courts.
- These crimes are neither “miscellaneous” or “family dramas” and even less “crimes of passion.” Through lack of clarity, not naming murderers and victims, the media demonstrate their ignorance of the system of male domination and encourage its trivialisation. A proper media treatment of feminicide is required.
On November 25 International Day against violence against women, we rose and with all women victims of male violence say: Stop the femicide.
This article is translated from Paris Luttes.
In Britain, Women’s Aid estimates that over the last 10 years an average of two women are killed every week by male partners or former partners. These are often pre-meditated and follow a pattern of abuse.
*Disclaimer: This article was edited from a machine translation, inaccuracies may arise — let us know if you spot any.