“Feminisms: A Global History” Playlist
In Feminisms: A Global History, historian Lucy Delap looks to the global past to give us a usable history of the movement against gender injustice—one that can help clarify questions of feminist strategy, priority, and focus in the contemporary moment. Rooted in recent innovative histories, the book incorporates alternative starting points and new thinkers, challenging the presumed priority of European feminists and ranging across a global terrain of revolutions, religions, empires, and anti-colonial struggles. The book’s final chapter explores the rich but often muted history of feminist music-making, shining a light on the chants, songs, and musical innovations that helped foster solidarity and subvert the status quo. Delap asks:
“What is it like to hear feminism? Historical distance and the intangible nature of sound mean that there are limits to the aural archive. But by reading historical documents against the grain, it is possible to ‘hear feminism’ even at the distance of several centuries. The traces of its rich soundtrack of oratory, songs, chants, and keening gives us a final entry point into understanding the useable past of feminisms.”
To help us tune into the aural dimensions of feminism, Delap created a playlist of global feminist songs, including some discussed in the book. Listen below or at Spotify:
Readers who want to suggest new content can tweet the author at @suff66.
Lucy Delap is reader and deputy chair of the Faculty of History at the University of Cambridge. She is the author of The Feminist Avant-Garde: Transatlantic Encounters of the Early Twentieth Century and Knowing Their Place: Domestic Service in Twentieth-Century Britain.