Feminism in new technologies
By: Elizabeth Vargas López
With the current wave of feminist messages, which are often criticized in social networks, it is important to recognize the relationships that the feminist message has had with the cyberspace for several years, and why these new ways of relating to each other and to communicate messages, has been used as a means of important dissemination by women.
Cyberfeminism is understood as a "set of feminist theories and practices of technology that emerge from the 90s" (Sunden and Sveningsson: 2007), its birth is fostered by new technologies and the influence of the third feminist wave.
It is important to mention that for feminists these new technologies represent the change of masculine identity and a great opportunity for society and technology to modify gender roles. This is how women can challenge these power relations between men and women for the first time in an area determined by algorithms and binary codes.
Sadie Plant says that the diffuse, horizontal and flexible networks that are typical of cyberspace were more akin to certain female values and ways of acting. Therefore, an intimate relationship between these and digital technologies is established.
According to Rosi Braidotti in A Different Cyberfeminism, "the most effective strategy for women is to use technology to free our collective imagination of the phallus and its accessory values such as money, exclusion, domination, iconic femininity and systematized violence. Donna Haraway (1991) states that it is not about going against science and technology but about codifying again the intelligence and the communication to subvert the commendation and the control ".
The cyberfeminist artistic practice finds in cyberspace a form of exhibition and diffusion, as a set of (in) material and technical resources for the development of its artistic practices. Through interconnection, collaboration, permeabilization, experimentation and the trend towards transformation, they question gender identities and established culture. (Salas, 2008).
However, despite all these manifestos of desire for gender equality and gender gaps, the reality is that in this as in several areas, women are still lagging, having little access to Information Technology. and Communication.
In the field of activism, its practice is related mainly to empowerment, the creation of networks and spaces for women with the intention of connecting them and making them visible from different fields. [Flanagan and Both, 2002].
An example of this area is the activism that has been recognized in recent days by the Institute of Women in Mexico City, to the initiative that Wikimedia Mexico has had to strengthen women through technology, through Editatona: "An editatona is a type of editaton for women only, where they have the space to edit Wikipedia articles that are relevant to them. The themes of these editatonas are varied and include science, technology, history, human rights, etc. Initiated in 2015, the editatonas have been successful in Mexico and is a model that has grown and has been replicated in Brazil, Ecuador and Uruguay, among others. If you are a woman, you coordinate a group of women or you integrate an organization that works for the rights of women, editatona is an alternative for you to counter this reality. "A project against the invisibility of women, against violence, They have decided to encourage more women to approach these spaces dominated by men, making them participate in edition marathons, focused on recognizing the role of women in various fields, taking into account that Wikipedia is one of the most visited sites worldwide. , and that the participation of women in the creation of these encyclopaedic articles is very low. Another example is #somostormenta, Storm: feminist dialogues for liberties and self-care, a space that involves women, to create safe spaces on the web and digital self-care. Participants are invited to share experiences about the use of the internet.
I believe that new technologies help make this serious problem of gender inequality visible and that little by little, awareness of this and more initiatives emerge that give women hope, participation and to create bonds that strengthen the feminist struggle, each from her trench.
"When you want democracy, you want feminism" Celia Amorós. 1944
Haraway, Donna (1991): Simians, Cyborgs and Women: The Reinvention of Nature.
Raidotti, Rossi (2002): Un ciberfeminismo diferente, Debats, 76. https://blog.torproject.org/events/tormenta-dialogos-feministas-para-las-libertades-y-autocuidados