And the winners are. . .
It was a fantastic evening at Parliament last night — despite the “weather bomb.” There was a full room of dedicated and inspiring people who are working to challenge a culture that normalises violence against women.
The event was opened by Alison Johnstone, MSP who shared her thoughts about why this award was important and the role government has in challenging Violence against Women. Particularly entertaining was her sharing of a recent piece in Business Women Media, titled “Internationally acclaimed barrister Amal Alamuddin marries an actor”
In their remarks, the presenting judges Vonnie Sandlan, Talat Yaqoob and Annie Donaldson did a superb job of highlighting the need to recognise great writing, particularly in a media climate that is often hostile to women.
To give more context to that climate, we were delighted to welcome Professor Karen Boyle, Director of Stirling University’s Centre for Gender and Feminist Studies and the only Professor of Feminist Media Studies in the UK. Professor Boyle’s insightful remarks drove home that changes in representation can change and challenge the ways we think about these issues, helping us to move away from a victim-blaming culture that focuses on the behaviour of survivors to one that focuses on the behaviours of perpetrators. A particular highlight was her point about the importance of making men visible when we talk about men’s violence and rape.
Professor Boyle also presented the Wooden Spoon “award” which “recognised” an especially egregious piece of writing, which in addition to being unconscionably victim-blaming, also contained a ludicrous panda reference.
Judging for the event was an incredibly difficult task, as the quality of writing was so high (except for the Wooden Spoon, of course!). All of the shortlisted pieces deserve high praise, but without further ado, the winners are (with links to the original publications). . .
Best Student Article
Wooden Spoon “Winner”
Here’s a small selection of photos from the event. Watch this space. There’s more to come. . .
(All photos credited to Chris Scott)