Today is the first of 16 days of blogging and reporting about gender-based violence around the world. The 16 Days Blogathon is an annual event hosted by genderED at the University of Edinburgh, the Australian Human Rights Institute at the University of New South Wales and Ambedkhar University in Delhi. The first blog comes from 2011 IASH-Traverse Creative Fellow Jo Clifford, on art as resistance in the face of hate:
I wrote that play: "The Gospel According to Jesus Queen of Heaven". And I still perform it.
It imagines Jesus coming back to earth in the present day as a transwoman.
What she says now is the basically the same as what he said then: that trans people, like all human beings, have a right to dignity and to respect.
That like all human beings we deserve to be celebrated and to be loved.
The hatred it inspired, and the protests from devout Christians that continue to this day, reflect the hatred and the prejudices of the society in which we live.
That same hatred was there in the abuse and the mockery and the threats I received when I first began to live openly as a woman; and I internalised it so that it prevented me doing so until I was in my fifties.
It is deeply connected to the misogyny and to the prejudice and to the hatred that causes all women on this planet to suffer everywhere.
Art helps us resist; and it matters that we resist together.
To read the full blog, please visit https://16daysblogathon.blog/2020/11/25/day-one-the-gospel-according-to-jesus-queen-of-heaven/.