tv Rachel Vogelstein and Meighan Stone Awakening - Me Too and the Global... CSPAN August 21, 2021 7:02pm-8:03pm EDT
movement and to explore how it caught fire in countries with different histories, cultures, political climates and records on women's rights. through the eyes and experiences of women advocates on the ground and hot spots, awakening concerns that women seeking recourse for sexual harassment and assault and the unfairness is of justice, underrepresentation in politicss and grotesque attacks on their identity using tools and technology to galvanize a worldwide movement. while optimistic the book also contains a warning about the backlash against women's progress now country after country and what can be done to protect, preserve and advance women's rights so fundamental to any fair and unjust society. and i want to say that as a measure of this books importance it's worth noting that the community organizer who helped spark the me to movement wrote the introduction. i said at the outset it's always a pleasure to promote a book as worthy as this one and even greater pleasure and honor when one of the authors happens to be
a former colleague and dear friend. rachel is a scholar, teacher and lifelong advocate for women's rights and is currently a senior fellow and director of foreign policies and with truth and advertising i had the good fortune to sit across from rachel in the headquarters of the hillary for president campaign in 2008, where we convened on a daily basis staring our dream and hoping to elect the first nations woman president. although the dream was dispersed, rachel went to the campaign to serve in the office of the global women's issues at the state department under secretary clinton. she was also a member of the white house council on women and girls and working with rachel and both of the campaign and at state, i saw how she applied her intellect, creativity, humanity and dedication to every project she undertook and it is for all of these reasons and so many more that it gives me total
sheer joy to see her hard work now in book form. we are also thrilled that rachel's wonderful co-author, meighan stone, is with us tonight. a force of nature when it comes to fighting for the rights of women and girls. she's a fellow at the council on foreign relations and for three years was president of the mall allah fund, one of one of the world's most influential nonprofits working to ensure girls can go to school and do so safely. as an advocate she served on the board of john lewis' bipartisan faith and politics institute and lead projects for the one campaign, united nations, the economic forum and other organizations and was named one of the most influential people and was on l magazine's 2017 women in washington power list. from any and every platform, meighan has helped women fight for their rights, challenge he outdated norms into the global cause of women's dignity and freedom. now meighan, you can add to being co-author to this
wonderful book to your life's work. last definitely never released, we are thrilled that the moderator for tonight's conversation is an expert on women's rights and an icon herself, gina. for those fluent in all things barack and michelle obama, you know she served as the chief of staff in the obama administration as assistant to the president and director for the white house council on women and girls. now of course she's president and ceo of times out, the leading organization working to change laws and cultures so that all women are treated fairly, with dignity and with respect to their safety and workplaces. she's also featured in rachel and meighan's book that has been emulated in countries around the world. honestly it is such a thrill and honor to have such an incredible lineup of champions for women in one screen tonight for the next hour. we are really happy about this event and so delighted to have all of you here, and i hope the audience will joined me in
welcoming all three of you. the floor is yours. >> thank you, lissa muscatine. it's my honor and privilege to be able to do this with rachel and meighan. it is a pleasure and we will get to the book in a moment. but just a wonderful occasion today. on morning joe this morning and now closing out my day by doing this event for politics and prose, which was my favorite bookstore when i was in dc for nine years. and i remain one of those leading independent bookstores in the country so thank you, so much. rachel and meighan are both to twowomen that i have had the pleasure of working with for many years. rachel, as we get all of our work in the obama administration, all of the global issues, international issues, white house counsel and then i also have to say we have been very fortunate in times up
to have rachel as an advisor. internationally rachel has been working on the military sexual assault and independent review commission work that was appointed by president biden and secretary alston. meighan and i got to know each other also when i was in the white house, when she was doing amazing work with malala. she and i organized a very complicated [inaudible] malala and her father in the white house in 2017. it was really concentrated on the fact that those of you that are from dc and know your dc history, you will remember october, 2017, we were in a government shutdown for the failure to pass the 2018 budget -- from 2014.
and malala and her father came to the white house. there were only few essential staff there. people like me were left to their who didn't know how to do all of the ways and enter. so there was the gate with in pouring rain. there was the first lady and the president and malia, the only event that she was asked to attend to be at that meeting with malala. it was amazing. that meeting was the inspiration for our work with missus obama on let's let girls learn to promote adolescent girls education, a project she continues and the girls opportunity alliance. so this is a pleasure. and then a word about the book. the book is amazing. first of all, as someone who was involved in the start of times up in 2017 in those moments into
seeing what we were doing here in the united states, the opportunity to see that reflected around the globe and through the eyes of the stories, the women that you bring to life in the book, it was incredible and i'm not sure that it changed the scope of what was happening until i read the book. and you know, you do it in such a way that tells the individual story and connects those to the history and those to a global movement in a seamless and incredibly elegant way. it is just beautifully written. i went through it all at once because it was just so gripping as a read and timeless. so, one of the things i love about the book and i will ask you to start there, is because it is a serious story about women and their experiences, each of you tell your story of that particular moment for each of you that brought you to the
book. i wonder if you would sort of share briefly that part of the book to set the stage for how you came into this issue and talk about it. rachel, maybe if you could start. >> i want to start first by saying thank you. for the opportunity to write this book. it was a labor of love and my absolute favorite bookstore in the world, politics and prose, it is a dream come true. you have been a legend on these issues for more years than i can count. i admire your work and it's an honor to have you with us. thank you for being with us. in the book we write about what brought us to this story and for me i had been working on the 2016 presidential campaign trying to live out the dream of electing a woman president in the united states and was really
surprised in the aftermath of the women's activism not only here in the united states but around the world if you think back to the 2017 women's march which is not only here in dc that was on every continent and was organized transnationally and digitally because of this rise in activism and at the council of foreign relations the program gained some track and we started to see not only an increase in the number of women raising their voices starting with that women's march moving to them me to movement, which goes global starting in october, 2017 and ultimately to an incredible rise in the women's political participation in a broad range of countries from afghanistan to brazil to places in the middle east that would
surprise you. we were struck by this incredible wave and had the opportunity to host activists and survivors of sexual slavery at the hands of isis at the council where she was advocating against discrimination and sexual abuse against women. we met with many activists and began trading stories. the stories were not being told in the american media and so lucky for me, meighan agreed to join together to write this together and we took this journey around the world and that's how we get to the awakening. >> meighan, how about you? >> first of all, thank you for being so decent in your praise. someone like you and i have to say as an advocate, so lucky if
tina is sitting across the table from you when you try to advocate for girls and women. it's not the case and a lot of the countries you go to these meetings for someone that cares deeply about serving it was just such an extraordinary opportunity to work together so glad to see you tonight. thank you. i would say this issue started to become real for me in terms of working with human rights activists and defenders. too many times you will sit with a woman who's been working on women's rights issues in her country and it won't be the first conversation or the second. it's after you really get to know each other and spend time together and after they know that you are in solidarity with them. after a big moment we start talking just as women and i was just really struck by how many times i had those conversations
with women's rights defenders when they disclose they've been sexually harassed or assaulted. sometimes it's at the hands of their own family members when they were a girl trying to stand up for their rights are sometimes deliberately used as a tool in the community to silence them for the work that they are doing and other times just an act of violence and retribution either from the government officers or officials and it's something that really wasn't talked about. women are not excited to get up and say that this has happened to them. it's a personal trauma and something that i found again and again. when the opportunity came to write this book, it was really rachel's idea to write this book
to go on this journey together. >> i was struck by this in the book. why october 17 with the times up and me to. you remember the 2016 moment with the videotape that was out there and it didn't spark this same wave and i've often said it was celebrity as we all thought we knew and whose faces we could recognize but importantly it was the role of social media instead of just telling it to ten people in your circle to be part of thousands for all these women
around the globe, multiple industries, low income, high wage and you pick that up. i see that throughout each country how social media made something that couldn't have happened perhaps in previous eras. can you talk about that and how you solve that thread and how it plays out in the books? >> in valuable to this movement we saw that here in the united states and also globally one of the great affects of this democratize his access to the movement and creates the space for women of all backgrounds and ethnicities, race, religion, socioeconomic status to have a fighting chance of being heard and to organize so we saw this all over the world and it's not a mistake i think that a lot of the leaders in the countries i
wrote about, places like nigeria, pakistan, egypt, tunisia are women in their early 20s to late 20s so many times in the foreign policy we think you have to have multiples agree. these women are not those women. they are young women that just understand the power of social media. it's also not a tool it doesn't mean there's not danger and we can't receive threats in that way. just because it goes viral doesn't mean you can translate it into power in the real world in real time. the most organizing i saw is when it was digital and real time so i think women organizing then going to protest in person in front of their local parliaments and statehouses to try to fight to the law as well is what was most successful most elite, much like we see here in the united states where organizing the rubber meets the road. >> i really agree. to contrast this moment helps
explain why we are seeing such rapid change in the such a short period of time. in the earlier era victories were one after lifetimes of organizing. it took more than a century for women globally to win the right to vote and it took decades to enshrine these rights into international law and today thanks to advances in technology we can mobilize millions across the country lines in a matter of weeks or days and the diversity of the movement has offered to change because of these 21st century tools. anyone with access to an internet connection can participate and many have participated and that is how women find strength in numbers in some respects the internet has become a 21st century public flair for women especially in places where their freedom is circumscribed and they can together safely in public but they can post online anonymously
and as a result the global women's movement that's not only more powerful but also more diverse than any other point in history. >> i want to remind the folks listening we are going to do an audience q-and-a before we finish the program. you can use the q and a function at the bottom of your screen and put your questions in and we will save some time before the hour is up to get to those. one of the things i was struck by is the courage of so many of these women and courage in ways that those of us in the united states as hard as it is as a survivor to speak out and how much courage that takes. we are not often being risked arrest or having our homes rated or being killed in some circumstances. those stories of courage stuck with me and it's powerful to bring that to life. i wonder if each of you might share because i want folks
listening to get a flavor of that power that is in the book. tell us a bit about a particular woman who stood out for you in the book in the work that you've done. rachel, let's start with you. >> there are so many but i will start with the courageous women we write about in brazil. in brazil the hashtag me to do is long predated by a campaign that is also digital and online. there is a hashtag from years before that translates into my first harassment. it was created by an innovative activist who used digital technology not only to a mass women but also visualize electronically the harassment and assault creating an online platform so women could post to the locations of assaults in real time thereby dispelling the notion that it's only a problem in certain places or
neighborhoods and what was remarkable is the women in brazil began to turn campaigns against sexual harassment into campaigns for political power and that gives rise to the remarkable election in rio de janeiro. as a woman there is a black human rights activist from the urban areas no one expects to win political power in a country largely controlled by wealthy white men but then in 2016 she is elected in a landslide and in the end paid the ultimate price for her advocacy. assassinated by those who opposed her commitment to end harassment and discrimination but as the chief of staff said following her assassination they thought that by killing her they buried her but instead they planted a seed and we see a record number of women and women of color in particular inspired
by her that have decided to run for office and ultimately who tried to silence her they are louder than ever with political representation in the 2018 federal election jumping from ten to 15%. but there's still a very long road ahead particularly under brazil's current president who has fought against women's rights tooth and nail but they now assume the position of power. these are women that are putting their lives and their bodies on the line.
whether it was covid who i worked for previously and we will deal with the results of those for the rest of our lives, it isn't an uncommon story and i think of a lawyer in egypt, in cairo on travel ban from the regime so of course the government of egypt, authoritarian at least 40,000 she wants to be of service.
she started to trying to represent people and help them as victims. what happened is they've now designated enemy of the state and she was charged in the court of law through the irresponsible liberation of women. this is a charge in the court documents and in retaliation because the regime worked around sexual harassment in this regime anybody that's good at being a critic becomes a threat and so she's considered a serious state threat and now has her assets frozen and she's had her organization shut down and she can't leave the country. she said she wouldn't change her decision even today. egypt announced the last few weeks public execution.
this isn't a theoretical difference. these are women that pursue the mission no matter the cost. >> the other story as the mother of a young woman i think of that. i don't know which one of you wants to tell -- >> i can tell that one because i wrote about the nigeria chapter. in the organizing it collectively came together and the movement started in the
north in northern nigeria where the women's rights are tremendous obstacles and a woman in the south saw this and started interacting in the north who first posted about her experience and then it spread to a university that is like the harvard of nigeria. this is where you dream of sending your daughter if she's going to make her way in the world. they work so hard to pursue their education to have a career and agency. they get to school and there is sexual harassment and abuse at the university. unless you sleep with your professor you will be failed. a lot of women feel like they are going to let down their family.
this is their opportunity for breakthrough and it's a power differential. everybody knew about it, they start organizing. there is a freelance journalist who convinces the power that be to give the time to investigate this for a year so she gets these under the age of 18 students to wear microphones and go undercover and record their professors, so all of the complaints were taken on but once they are finished it's hard to dispute so these professors were removed and then it led to nigeria passing explicit laws to say that there should be a prohibition and there was a huge scandal in nigeria and it left a concrete change so again it was a group using media digital organizing, creativity it still
sometimes amazes me you still have story after story and we don't have sufficient systems in place as you've graphically illustrated for us a couple weeks ago. but i think laying out we are typically all talking about scandinavians and having the sort of gender rights in some ways and yet the patriarchy of hanging on in places like that i think we see and what you write
about. >> it speaks to the importance of the social norm change. it's a place that has some of the strongest in promoting an advanced gender inequality and they had an enormous need to movement. the country was really shocked. there was an awakening to the scope of the problem there and they were incredibly creative in their organizing and decided rather than outing individual men that they would focus on this issue of the discrimination instead of the way that it's often portrayed and has been in this country in the case of a few individual bad apples. they organize across 65 different industries to show that it is truly pervasive in all parts of the society.
they used clever hashtags so that restaurant workers boiling with rage and the healthcare workers translated to now it will really hurt and under the not negotiable it really helps it take off that we tell the story of a woman who is posting about her own experience with assault and named her a legit attacker in part because she had gone to the police. after seeing the meat to movement go viral in the united states, she decides to post and ultimately many other women come forward with disturbingly accurate accusations against the man she accused and she is sued
by the attacker for defamation and ultimately she was sentenced to pay him damages. this is a tactic that we see and it shows how the justice system cries out for reform. >> trying to silence melanie by threatening her with defamation in the wake of the reporting in the hashtag need to and it could shut the whole thing down because that is a predator's playbook. it's there around the world. not just playbooks, but backslash, the backlash theme
and the courage theme there is backlash we touched upon a little bit in some of these stories and there's the resulting backlash that come away with things we could do about that in this moment. meighan, let's start with you. >> i have a quote above my desk that power is nothing without a fight and whenever i feel discouraged in trying to do human rights work because it isn't going to be an easy road, i can't tell you how many times many of my colleagues have said that to me and there's so much backlash. the movement can't be successful. i would say it's interesting can you tell me the movement to which there was no backlash. there's no answer. there is no movement.
they know exactly what is coming in response to them and it takes the reform from i think of one of the first women of egypt to bring forth the sexual harassment case and she was not only removed from her role and fired but threatened with you will never get a job in media again because she worked with a state-supported media company. all the way to the women in pakistan that experienced incredible backlash and the women that organized because they are in deep relationships with all these women and a lot of us have had to go into hiding because of the suits that were filed. after the march, one local parliament tried to support the legislation to ban women together in the streets but a
lot of them went into hiding. they marched with transgender pakistani women so it's incredible work that's happening as of the backlash is real. it's happening in terms of the racial inequities and of course there's going to be backlash that doesn't mean that the work is not successful. it means it is making progress and that's why there's so much pushback. >> not only do we recognize the backlash but to ensure the progress we have seen over three years continues and this is an agenda informed by the women leaders on the front line and we kind of refer to it as the side and they are addressed for the reform and the law and
representation for women resources for implementation are often overlooked and calibration of the social norms. we maintain this agenda will not only help speak up to demand their rights but also help ensure they have the power to actually implement them and at the top of the agenda of every activist that we interviewed around the world is this idea of the redress of justice for the survivors of sexual harassment and i know that is what you are working on day in and day out and there is a universal demand for that and for centuries in every part of the world people accused of sexual abuse especially those of power have had the legal system in their favor while the integrity of the survivors have been put on trial and this injustice helped explain why before this online movement offered both anonymity
and strength in numbers that so few women were willing to come forward and name what was happening all around us, so delivering justice for survivors is a cornerstone of this agenda and it requires a functioning balance system that protects the rights of the accused but also protects the rights of survivors free from discrimination and stereotypes about women. >> an amazing statistic that i will say i only just learned 50 countries around the world still do not have any laws prohibiting sexual harassment or addressing sexual harassment in the workplace and that 58% of the country actually don't have any of that outlaw marital rape. so, those have that going on but i would say over and over again even what we think of here in
the united states so far to go on these issues. we've got another question and i want to turn to a couple of these so that we have time. sarah has asked we saw high-profile cases calling out the behavior and i'm wondering if in the developing world were the women calling out more economically vulnerable how are the women of privilege being analyzed which i think is a great question because it is something we see here in the united states and that's been one of the strengths is reaching out across the industries and across the economic lines. did you see that happening elsewhere? >> i think we saw this and many other countries that we write about and i will mention an anecdote from brazil. there was at the height of the
protest sexual harassment there was an unbelievable phenomenon where the industry that was dominated in many other parts of the world suddenly the editors in brazil were interested in what the women are protesting about and so the editors that refused to print articles about the harassment in their papers suddenly want to know more and one of the activists that we interviewed i remember laughing with her in a café because she said men kept calling her from the newspapers saying women are trying to say something. how can we hear them and then she would open the paper and she would be mailed by violence.
so to take over the journalism industry she goes with her colleague, who is also a privileged woman that is connected and they went from journalist to journalist and convinced them to let women take over the column and had this unbelievable wave but when they did it, they insisted that in place of the men would be a diverse group in fact the woman i talked about earlier that offered the human rights activist they insisted on not doing that. they could see the strength of the movement by taking inclusive and diverse approach to their work. for those of you that follow
soccer that story offered the most prominent and created an opportunity after the final match of the world cup for women to talk about what had happened to them so all of these men were not expecting to find a post game and analysis that included sharing experiences that she had never been public about before. but that diversity really helped to characterize the movement in brazil right from the get-go. >> it also tells a story not just us women of privilege which was the question but also the male allies and how they can step up. but meighan had another example reaching out to be allies across the various lines.
a. >> i wanted to shout out to you. it's such a gift to get to work with women in so many different contexts and to be inspired by each other. we talk about this transnational nature from country to country and when a woman feels like in her mission she's trying to feel defeated or deferred she's looking to others in other countries to take lessons or inspiration or tactics and this is what the co-organizing is all about. but i think about in pakistan it started a similar thing. they made allegations against another famous actor and she started doing things like going and marching to speak to the everyday women that gathered from all walks of life.
women came to the march and it was important to the march organizers who were a lot of them lawyers, journalists, but that benefited from a lot of privilege in terms of education and resources and it was important to them that the march was incredibly welcoming and they were recruiting from all backgrounds to come together because obviously the socioeconomic disparities in that community is wide so that happened and then one of the lawyers starts her version of times up and many simply can't afford a lawyer. from all the women represented in the defense fund it's a huge barrier. it's insurmountable when a system doesn't function. you could have a case for years
and years and years, that happens here in the u.s. by the way but it's a model that's pioneered and to say i see this connected it's so real and undeniable. >> it's incredible and what is so great about this book. another question is from katie. women disproportionately lost their job due to the pandemic. as the economy starts to bounce back you anticipate they are exploiting the need for work and we will see a surgeon the workplace harassment. >> covid has revealed as we live through showing through women have power in the workplace and
women are already battled with caregiving and saw the responsibilities multiplied around the world in child care centers closed with an average of three times more unpaid work than men, intimate partner violence skyrocketed as they were forced to shelter at home and we saw the female dominated industries that were especially vulnerable from the labor force in the u.s. and women of color lost their jobs in the labor force participation that had 33 year lows and globally although the women comprised only 39% of the workers in the former labor force, they suffered the majority of job losses during the pandemic. so, we know that there is a power imbalance and this
pandemic has put that in stark relief. anecdotally, we did a little work on this we were hearing and increase about the rise in online harassment and one important is that new convention from the international labor organization that addresses the world of work and includes online harassment and there's a lot that can be done as the countries begin to ratify and start to include online harassment as a form that needs to be addressed. but i would also add we found at the height of the pandemic women can choose to come out in record numbers on these issues. women who began protesting against gender-based violence under the hashtag meaning not one left. they had facemasks and
ultimately leveraged their newfound political power into a successful push to legalize abortion, a victory that has ripple effects across latin america today and at the same time, we saw one of the most oppressive places in the world they rose up to join around the world to also say me too and had allegations of sexual abuse against a prominent iranian man who is now known as the harvey weinstein of ron and that led to criminalize sexual assault and harassment. it hasn't silenced women's voices and as we begin to get the pandemic under control and reopen the economy and the market, we should expect to see those voices continue to rise.
>> i will add a little bit of af you plug myself because that's exactly where we are seeing this moment. we know that harassment didn't go away. women are not part of the recovery right now even as we see the recovery happening the unemployment rate continues. i came to dc today to be a part of a day of action to call for the enactment of the build back a better plan by the biden administration that really lays out a comprehensive caregiving infrastructure and tomorrow on times up we are doing an event
with the department of commerce and over 300 businesses that have joined to support the caregiving to do more as employers because the way to combat harassment and make sure we go to the workplaces where it doesn't happen is down the power structures that currently exist that means breaking down the structures that keep women and disabled and people of color out of the workplace rising to the levels of power that they are able and right now caregiving is at a crisis and we see that in the figures rachel just laid out. this is the moment right now to make sure that you use your voice to let people know including elected officials that caregiving is important to you and red states are suffering as well as blue states these are
all interconnected and it really shows that. another person that i see just came in and many of us were elated to see i know both of you had experience in this nothing completely crushed by the disbursement of what's going on in afghanistan and it's weighing on many of us as we see the u.s. withdraw in afghanistan. either one of you may be jumping to address that. >> i am happy to jump in. it is critical that the biden administration advocate for the meaningful participation in
every process in afghanistan. the situation on the ground from the headlines is incredibly fraught with attacks happening around the country. and of course it is dangerous for the women that have been under assault that i would note just as the movement has changed the social norms in so many places in just a few short years, afghanistan today is a different place than it was 20 or 30 years ago. it has a constitution. girls have returned to school. women are in the workplace. that is the afghanistan of today's over the country to be in good standing and international communities the fundamental rights cannot and should not be taken away. my understanding is that the biden administration is focused on a safety and security in the transition that quite frankly they need to be, they needed to ensure financial support to the organizations on the ground. they need to provide safety for
the women that are fighting against the taliban and that includes the conflict resolution but because it is the smart and strategic thing to do to advance the long-term stability of that nation. >> i wish the telly and cared about good standing internationally. this gets to the heart of where the women's issues are geopolitically. they basically gave way and there was little good diplomacy that went into starting this and we can look back and see how this began but it left us unable to advocate or try to set any terms in terms of how we would disengage or what was
guaranteed. this is one of the challenges i know a lot of us are close friends and colleagues and activists have come to washington, d.c. and worked together at the malala fund. one of the last programs i worked on and i'm proud to contribute to the relationships to support to make sure we were giving direct funding not to the large organizations but to the local leaders and to the women in the communities and that work was really promising but a woman afghanistan that was educated and part of the media, it is just literally to have a target on you. and just yet again to see what women continue to do to fight for themselves, to fight for their communities. i wish more policymakers would
spend time on this because they would talk about the policy very differently. [inaudible] the moderator called on every man in the room before they call on her. when they called on her, she crushed it and had the knowledge deeply of what her community needed. but i think sometimes geopolitically and when we talk about security or conflict, women's issues are pushed aside as collateral damage. like they are not considered and we need to change that. >> i echo everything that you said about these men and women that we've met in afghanistan over the last couple of decades. you mentioned backlash. why do you think it is difficult for the society to stand with those that are victims of sexual
harassment? >> i'm so glad that you got to latricia. i think that it's just a hard issue. it's hard to talk about. sometimes the men who perpetrated these actions are men that we know and love and work with. how many times have we seen some of the stories that have come out in the movement that they are allies and we thought that they were men on our side. these are powerful men with financial interests. i mean, harvey weinstein. why was everyone surprised for so long? they wanted to make sure that the work would continue. he could to destroy careers and companies. he could destroy so much by simply taking a stance and having a grudge. so the power dynamic always. but it is a shame we still continue to put on women for daring to speak up and say i was
assaulted. why do we see if someone is attacked and beaten to a pulp somehow i feel like people are more easily able to interact with them they unable to understand a female who could be assaulted. i will say personally as i disclose in the book i myself am a survivor and we had to do media training and the trainer was kind of looking out for us like what's going to happen if someone asks you if you were a victim of sexual assault and i would say i'm grateful i got counseling and recovery and the tools that we advocate for the agenda. i would simply say that's part of my experience. so other women feel safe to come forward and fight. we need to say a lot of women, all kinds of women experience this. >> we are coming up in the last few minutes. one final question to each of you. what can we do and especially women in the united states.
a quick recommendation each of you have for what we can do to address globally sexual harassment and sexual assault. i will start with you and end with rachel. >> number one, if you go in the book in the back there's a list of all the organizations of those we interviewed and the leaders in the country and globally organizations like the un, the fund for women and if you are inspired don't just be inspired. that would be a failure of the book. we want you to partner with these women. you can support them directly your self. secondly, we are in dc. speak to your leaders and say you want to prioritize. the women led organizations and then hey let's think twice about how we fund aid and give military assistance to those like egypt and saudi arabia on the human rights and women's
rights. you can take action directly today and also make your voices heard with elected leaders. >> that is a great list to start with and i would add one more to do item on the agenda, which relates to the fifth in the agenda and that is the social norms. a challenge harmful and discriminatory norms that you hear about family and friends and stereotypes about the veracity of the women that come forward about sexual abuse and challenge them if you hear people questioning the relatability of women speaking to positions of power, challenge them. the shifting attitudes about sexual abuse and women's power in the leadership is so critical to addressing this broad power imbalance. >> thank you. it's a pleasure and opportunity
and i recommend the book to anybody listening and watching this. >> what an amazing hour of conversation. we are so grateful and inspired to have the three of you. we are among the world's leading experts and you and your dedication and your own courage and humanity on the issue and your persistence and strength is so inspiring to so many people, certainly me. what a joy to have you. you were so good at moderating. you better move far if you don't want to do this again. you did such a wonderful job. again congratulations on the book it is just absolutely fabulous. it's so important. everybody needs to read it and it's not that long. it doesn't take a long time to read it. and it has amazing stories. as tina said earlier. also, it's got the best cover.
i love this cover and if you haven't picked up the book yet, when you do, you can find the link on the chat here on the website. you will see all these different hashtags around the world that have been used as a part of the movement. it's a beautiful cover and it speaks to the kind of essence of the book. i did also want to say which i should have said at the outset in the evening that huge thanks to our partners and friends at the republic that cosponsored the event. we are so grateful to have that partnership for the event and anyway, everybody buy this book for every person you know, not just women. it's fabulous. congratulations. we will do our utmost. in the world, out in the world and again, thank you all, thank you to the audience for joining in to hear the conversation. we appreciate it that you are
discusses her point of view and the freestate project . >> carla gericke is the author of this book "the ecstatic pessimist: stories of hope (mostly)". i want to ask you a question i have never asked an author before . what was i reading west and mark what was ireading ? >> you were reading a collection of my essays and short stories over time. it was an amalgamation of the work i did when i did my mfa in city college in new york.