Eastern Europe, global division of reproductive work and transnational solidarity

Debate with the participation of Olena Lyubchenko (York University), representatives of Essential Autonomous Struggles Transnational: Ana Vilenica and Sopiko Japaridze, Julia Kubisa

The meeting will be held on Zoom. Registration required (open until 3.02.2021) via the application form on our website. We will e-mail the link to the meeting to registered participants. We are planning live streaming of Facebook. The meeting will be recorded and archived on our YouTube channel and in Resources on Biennale website. To protect your image, we ask you to keep your cameras and microphones off during the entire event. But we do encourage you to join the discussion and send us questions on the chat. The moderators will ask them on your behalf.

Honouring the long tradition of International Women’s Day, we are dedicating our March event to discussing the task of cross-border feminist and labour solidarity: in particular transnational activism in Eastern Europe. Because of the region’s position in the global division of reproductive labour, women from Eastern Europe have long been forced to provide low-paid reproductive and care work for the residents of the more affluent part of the continent. However, it is important to remember that this area is not uniform – relations of exploitation often run along national borders, reflecting an economic rivalry based on the logic of “a race to the bottom” in terms of labour cost reduction. Seen from this perspective, the categories of nationality, class, and race serve the purpose of pacifying local care work movements, which – if limited to a single country – often have little opportunity to exchange ideas or mobilize collectively. We invited researchers and activists from Poland, Serbia, Georgia and Ukraine who explore strategies meant to counter these processes, or who engage with grass-roots networks of solidarity built by female reproductive workers from across Eastern Europe (and globally). Together, we will consider how to forge alliances against the divisions imposed on us by the logic of capital and the nation-state order.

Debate will be held in English, without interpreting.