Eryn Wise, with her niece. Courtesy photo
“We are caretakers,” says Eryn Wise. “We are life givers. We are keepers and protectors of the sacred. I think women more than most people understand the connection to water. Simply because we are born from it and we carry it inside of us to give life to others.”
Women have stood at the center of the Standing Rock water protectors since the beginning. The water protectors began their first encampment, Sacred Stone Camp, on April 1, 2016, near Cannon Ball, North Dakota, on the Standing Rock Indian Reservation. They insist that the pipeline violates indigenous and treaty rights, as well as endangers the drinking water of people who live on the reservation and millions more downstream. Continue reading
Sarah Deer’s powerful new book, The Beginning and End of Rape focuses on sexual violence in Native America. The beginning goes back to the European invasion, with rape used as a tool of genocide and conquest. Now, as then, when European American men rape Native women, U.S. legal systems help them escape punishment. In an eminently readable book, law professor and MacArthur genius grant winner Sarah Deer describes the historical trajectory of rape and rape laws, beginning with the historical connection between rape and conquest / genocide / white patriarchy and legal systems. Continue reading
Dr. Edwige Mubonzi. Photograph courtesy of Dr. Mubonzi.
Death threats drove Dr. Edwige Mubonzi from her home and work in the Democratic Republic of Congo about two and a half years ago. Her work – surgically repairing the physical damage of rapes – brought the death threats. Rape as a weapon of war, in the ongoing struggle for control of the country’s rich mineral resources, has made DR Congo the rape capital of the world. Continue reading